When starting Brooklyn Nets forward Gerald Wallace went down Wednesday night with a foot injury, the man that came in to replace him wasn’t who you would expect. Instead of Marshon Brooks, the Nets turned to 38-year old veteran Jerry Stackhouse to play the bulk of the minutes.
Brooks would have appeared to be the logical choice to pick up more playing time in Wallace’s absence. He’s just 24 and in his second season, but Brooks is also 6’5″ and can score from anywhere on the court. But the Nets don’t really need much offensive help, now that Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez have that part of the game covered.
What the Nets do need is someone to play solid position defense and knock down the open shot when called upon, both areas that Stackhouse has been able to perform well as a reserve throughout the latter stages of his career. Stackhouse’s career three-point percentage may only be .308 and is only .321 this season, but his veteran know-how and understanding of the game seem to be the better option for head coach P.J. Carlesimo as the Nets approach the playoffs.
Brooklyn won’t be able to totally replace the defense and hustle, but if Stackhouse and Brooks can combine to contribute a little of both when each is on the floor the Nets should be fine until Wallace returns. Both Brooks and Stackhouse are natural shooting guards, but Joe Johnson at 6’7″ can play some wing forward on defense if needed.
The Nets have played better over the second have of the season, and with a veteran like Stackhouse and a young talent like Brooks they have enough depth to withstand Wallace’s injury.