The Golden State Warriors depth received a tremendous boost with the signing of Carl Landry and the re-signing of Brandon Rush. Landry will become the primary backup to starting power forward David Lee and Rush will have competition between Richard Jefferson and first round draft pick Harrison Barnes for the starting small forward spot.
It’s the second acquisition of a New Orleans Hornets player this offseason as point guard Jarrett Jack came via trade. Landry is a solid scorer coming off the bench and will be effective on the offensive glass. Last season he averaged 12.5 points and 5.2 rebounds in 41 games and his best season came in 2009-2010 when he averaged 16.8 points and 5.9 rebounds in 80 games including 29 starts. He also is a very good free throw shooter at 77.7 percent for his career.
Lee benefits the most from the signing because he will no longer have to play heavy minutes and can get more rest during games. Also, will allow for second round pick Draymond Green to develop during practice or get minutes in the National Basketball Developmental League.
After trading Dorell Wright re-signing Rush became a priority who had a career season with the Warriors. In 65 games he averaged 9.8 points, 3.9 rebounds, 1.4 assists, on 50.1 percent shooting, 45.2 percent from three and 79.3 percent from the free throw line. His three-point percentage ranked sixth in the league and he is very good defensively.
Based on his experience and his ability to play defense it wouldn’t be surprising that coach Mark Jackson names Rush the starting small forward with Barnes being the primary backup. The move would allow Barnes to develop at his own pace and get used to the pace of NBA action and gives the bench an additional scorer alongside Jack and Landry.
With the added depth a weakness has now become a strength and the Warriors will be one of the more surprising teams in 2012-2013.