The Golden State Warriors announced today the call-up of
Hilton Armstrong from its D-League affiliate in Santa Cruz.
In six games with the D-League team, Armstrong averaged 15.3 points and 7.3 rebounds. A first-round NBA draft-pick in 2006 (12th overall) by the New Orleans Hornets, Armstrong was a member of Indiana Pacers training camp before being released shortly before the regular season began.
Armstrong joins a Golden State team in need of help off the bench as injuries have plagued the NBA team in the early part of the season. The list of inactive players, Andre Iguodala, Festus Ezeli, Toney Douglas, Ognjen Kuzmic and most recently Jermaine O'Neal.
The Golden State Warriors initially called-up Dewayne Dedmon from their D-League affiliate Nov. 18th. Dedmon appeared in four games for the Oakland team totaling six-minutes of playing time. He was waived by Golden State a week ago and was re-signed by Santa Cruz, who still own his D-League rights, yesterday.
Oakland is going in a different direction with their call-ups, and it's the right one. While Dedmon has more upside than Armstrong, Hilton is a ready-made player who can contribute immediately. Dedmon thrives in the run-and-gun scheme of the D-League, whereas Armstrong can contribute in both the uptempo style and the half-court play the NBA is accustomed to.
This is the benefit of the D-League; Armstrong is familiar with the Warriors system and is able to contribute immediately knowing what to expect from coach Mark Jackson and co. having prepared in Santa Cruz for several weeks now.
The Warriors add Armstrong as the signing of free-agent Marreese Speights in the offseason has not panned out the way the team hoped. In 22 games this season, Speights is averaging 4 points to go with 3.4 rebounds in just over 11 minutes played per game. Speights is shooting a mere 33 percent from the floor in those games.
With a team marred by injuries this season, the Golden State team is attempting to address the issues of their bench play (or lack thereof) by trying out different fits. Dedmon wasn't the answer (at least no immediately) so now they turn to a different player in Armstrong.
Hilton makes his debut with Golden State the same night Monta Ellis returns to the Bay Area, the first time in a Dallas Mavericks uniform. Ellis leads the Mavericks in scoring, averaging 21.5 points per game.