By the standards of today’s NBA draft, Josh Childress is an old geezer on the backside of his career.
Childress, who is expected to be taken in the top 10 in Wednesday’s draft, has played — get this — three years of college basketball!
And this may be a reason why his stock has risen lately. In a draft based more and more on potential than past performance, anybody who drafts Childress won’t be taking nearly as much of a chance as they would with a high school player.
With Childress, who worked out for the Suns on Wednesday morning, "We can see what we’d get," said Suns coach Mike D’Antoni.
His draft value also is going up because he’s played well in various pre-draft workouts.
He is seen as a versatile, athletic player who has the quickness and long arms to defend players on the perimeter. He also is considered a good rebounder and shot-blocker, and he can hit both the mid-range and 3-point shot.
And he might be better suited to the pro game than to the highly structured system he played in at Stanford the past three years.
In the past few weeks, "I’ve shown I can play in a fastbreak system," Childress said. "I can bang with guys and do all the things that were considered my weaknesses."
In considering the 6-foot-8, 205-pound Childress, "He’s somebody you would take on talent," D’Antoni said. "He can play."
It doesn’t hurt that Childress is well spoken and appears squeaky clean.
"Everybody likes him," D’Antoni said.
The downside: The Suns are loaded at off-guard and small forward, the spots he would play.
"This team is stacked with wings," Childress said. "That’s one of the things I’m thinking about."
Childress figures he could be traded if the Suns draft him.
The Suns have said they might trade the pick and get out of the draft entirely to save salary-cap space.
Such a decision could be made at the last minute, D’Antoni suggested, if all the pIayers the Suns have targeted are gone by the time they draft at No. 7.
But as of now, he said, "I’d be surprised if we don’t use the pick."
BONUS SHOT: Childress might not be around at No. 7. The expansion Charlotte Bobcats, who draft No. 4, are scheduled to take a second look at him in the next few days.