The Clippers signed Doug Christie to a 10 day contract today. Thanks to Citizen mp for the head's up in the Diaries. He will apparently be in uniform for the Bulls game tonight. (Christie - not mp.)
When the LA Times reported this morning that the Clippers were considering "signing an experienced wing player" who "probably would be someone who has not been on a roster this season" I immediately thought about Lamond Murray and got worried. I went to the Hoops Hype Free Agency page, and glanced through the lists of threes and fours. When I saw Christie's name, I paused a moment. (To be fair, I also paused at Penny and Spree - these are some big names.)
Full disclosure: I went to Pepperdine. I saw Christie play his first collegiate game - it must have been November 1989. He took the opening tip straight in for a jam. He was clearly the most talented player I'd ever seen at Pepperdine, and I saw Dennis Johnson.
Four LA area college players were drafted in the first round in 1992: Harold Miner (12), Christie (17), Tracy Murray (18) and Don MacLean (19). I told anyone that would listen that Christie would be the best pro of the four. They didn't tend to believe me. Come to think of it, it will be interesting to see what Westphal (Pepperdine coach, though long after Christie's time) and MacLean have to say before the game on Prime Ticket tonight.
Most people have forgotten, but when Christie first joined the NBA with the Lakers, he was a high-flyer. After disappointing stays with the Lakers and Knicks, he found a home with the Raptors, where he averaged 16.5 points in 97-98. Then, similar to Ron Harper after he left the Clippers, he re-invented himself as a defensive stopper and all-around player during four great years in Sacramento. He was the 'glue guy' for those Kings teams, though he barely averaged double figures over his Kings career.
He's smart, he's a good defender, he's a career 35.5% shooter on threes, and he says he's in the best shape of his life. His last couple years in the NBA the first time around he was hampered by plantar fasciitis, a condition ClipsNation is now more familiar with.
It's only a 10 day contract, right? Besides, he's young (6 whole months younger than Sam Cassell).
I can't wait to see what the Sports Guy has to say about this. He LOVES the Christie's.