There was a time when Michael Redd was one of the more feared players in the NBA because of his lights-out shooting and scoring ability. Although those days are long gone and he has struggled with injuries over the past few seasons, he can still be a good NBA player and a legitimate starter on some teams.
The New Orleans Hornets could be one of those teams.
With Chris Paul rumored to be wanting a trade and his contract expiring after next season, the team needs to find the pieces to put around him to make them championship contenders. Redd could be that first piece.
While it's true he hasn't been the same since the 2008-09 season, he is still one of the best three-point shooters in the league and, when healthy, is still an above-average scorer. Marco Belinelli didn't exactly light things up last season and Chris Paul is not staying in New Orleans to throw passes to him. Redd could step in as the starting shooting guard and fill one of the holes this Hornets team has.
While many think Redd is through with his 20 PPG scoring days, playing with Chris Paul could get him increased opportunities to score the basketball. He was averaging 27 PPG during the 2006-07 season without an elite point guard getting him the ball.
If his knees have fully recovered from the multiple ACL surgeries, he could still create shots for himself and, with his shooting ability, be a lethal option shooting behind screens. With Chris Paul's passing ability, Redd should have plenty of open looks during the game and, despite his injuries, he can still knock down the open three-pointer.
Redd's presence will also open things up for Paul and Ariza to penetrate into the paint and get easy looks at the basket. It would also open up the post game for Okafor, West and Landry as teams will be reluctant to double-team them and risk leaving Redd wide open for a three-pointer.
Imagine this team:
- C: Okafor
- PF: West
- SF: Ariza
- SG: Redd
- PG: CP3
- Bench: Gray, Jack, Green, Belinelli, Landry
That roster coupled with a few tweaks here and there might be enough to convince Paul that the Hornets are serious about winning and will continue to improve their roster in coming seasons.