BOSTON- The Boston Celtics made a lot of noise when the team drafted what many consider a steal in rookie forward Jared Sullinger with the 21st pick of this year’s NBA draft. Sullinger is the gifted scorer and rebounder that the Boston Celtics have lacked for some time. However, Boston may have made an even more important pick with the next pick with the selection of rookie center Fab Melo.
Melo’s development can be argued will determine the Celtics future success. The fact is the road to the NBA title is now has a few teams with monsters patrolling the middle. These monsters are also very young and that fact means that they will be around a lot longer than Kevin Garnett will be in Boston.
In fact Boston’s division just got one of these young monsters as the Philadelphia 76ers acquired Andrew Bynum from the Los Angeles Lakers. Those same Lakers got their own monster center in the middle in Dwight Howard in that same trade that involved Bynum.
In order for Boston to match up with these teams down the road, Fab Melo will have to become a monster himself. Boston will need Melo to become a defensive force in the middle that is capable of defending these other guys. Melo will also have to develop an offensive game that will make these guys be honest in covering him on the other end and tire them out from banging with them down low. If Melo fails to be able to provide this kind of game at the center position for the Celtics, Boston can kiss any hopes of a title good bye.
The good news for Boston is Melo is poised to become a solid NBA center at worst. Head coach Doc Rivers is one of the best at coaching up his players to get the most out of their talent. Guys like Kendrick Perkins, Greg Stiemsma, and even Ryan Hollins all performed above their skill levels under Rivers. Melo has more natural talent and athleticism than these guys did so if Doc coaches this kid up then one can plan on Melo being better than advertised. If anyone can get Melo to become a polished low post scorer, it is Doc Rivers and his staff.
Melo also has one of the best to learn from in KG. KG can take the ultra talented, but raw defensive Melo and help him become a defensive stalwart like he did Perkins. KG can teach Melo the complex Boston defense. KG can take Melo and teach him the fine art of positioning on the help defense that Boston is so famous for executing.
The offensive end has Rajon Rondo pointing the way for the rookie. As long as Melo moves without the ball, Rondo will find him in the paint. Melo is athletic enough to play above the rim and that should make Melo effective before he learns the post game form the Celtics coaches.
The bottom line is the Celtics need Fab Melo to become a monster in the middle. There are just too many teams with centers that stand in the Celtics path of a title with their own monster in the paint. If Melo is not up to challenge then Boston will be in a lot of trouble for years to come. The good news is I believe he will become the monster Boston needs. Remember Go Green Or Go Home!!!!!!