Fab Melo tonight.

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by sam on Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:13 pm

112288,

Is that the same Doc who has played Sully in every game this season and has even had him starting—and not because of any injuries? Is that the same Doc who helped develop Steamer into a valued commodity last season?

Just asking. I guess old myths die hard.

We have some promising players in Maine. Which of them would you say has demonstrated enough potential on a consistent basis to warrant his joining the parent team other than to sit on the bench? In the videos I've seen, there have been some nice moves, but I haven't seen the kind of consistency that I thought was worthy of what would probably be a callup for practice, bench duty, and garbage time minutes when repetitions (even at the D League level) are more valuable. I liked some things I saw in the pg Mack, but there's still some lot of development needed there.

I believe it was today that the entire Maine team was brought in to show their stuff to the Celtics brass. I assume Doc was on board with that move.

Sam

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by NYCelt on Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:13 am

Doc has indicated Melo is not ready...

Chris Forsberg: Doc Rivers seems to shoot down Fab Melo as potential big man addition: “I haven’t talked to anyone that thinks he’s ready to come up yet.” Twitter @ESPNForsberg

.. and, unfortunately, Shelvin Mack was signed by Washington.

Back to the drawing board.

Bradley's apparently back soon though!

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by worcester on Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:56 am

What if we could somehow get Varejao? Then we could field a team of three Bazilian's on the floor - Varejao, Barbosa, and Melo. The Brazilian flag is mostly green. Think about it!

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by 112288 on Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:19 am

Sam,

Bradley was the last option available to Doc when Rondo got hurt....or do you forget. The same thing for Stemeer...when he was forced to use him when JON went down.

A perfect example of a missed opportunity was not developing E'Twaun Moore into a shooting guard when they had the chance last year when Allen went down. The kid will be a good player in the NBA and is showing promise in Orlando.

But do not take it from me...it has been Doc's MO for a number of years for not playing young players and professional sports writers have said it first, I'm just repeating what has been said in the press.

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by worcester on Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:14 am

Don't forget how reluctant Doc was to play Rondo during his rookie year. Still, it's all well that ends well.

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by sam on Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:26 am

112288,

Most times Moore got into a game last season, he froze except for lobbing threes while mixing in an occasional floater. And that was usually against inferior garbage time competition. Then was then, and now is now; and unfortunately, Doc isn't gifted with super foresight. Different players develop at different rates, and a lot of that development (or lack of it) is discernible during practices, which neither of us can see (unfortunately).

There's no question that Doc sets a conservative standard for young players as befits the coach of a perennial championship contender. In Doc's eyes, kids have to produce in whatever settings they're exposed to, and "produce" often involves things that fans don't necessarily see or consider in their zeal to play the "watch the kid" game.

Doc might even err on the overly conservative side. So players like Gomes, Glen Davis, and Powe came into their own a little later than they might have if Doc had been gifted with exceptional foresight and had tabbed them for rotation play earlier. Maybe Moore should be included in that group, although I don't believe so based on what I saw from him last season, even though I liked his potential. After all, why promote Moore and not Chris Johnson last season—especially since they were short on "bigs?" One's now doing pretty well and the other's bouncing around. Are championship caliber coaches habituated to taking 50% risks in promoting players when a premature promotion for just a few minutes a game could cause discontinuity that would resulting in the team's backsliding?

Doc didn't play Perk a lot (10 games at fewer than four minutes per game) in his first season. Perk had come to the team with an offensive reputation, having set impressive scoring records at his high school. Doc began working Kendrick into the lineup in his second season (60 games @ nine minutes per game) despite the fact that he had two centers (Blount and LaFrentz) who, between them, averaged 20 ppg that season.

By his third season (68 games, 20 mpg), Perk had been transformed into a defensive player whom most people on the board would now salivate to have on this team. Do you think transformations like that come about by magic? No, a substantial learning curve was involved on the part of both the coach (in identifying the most likely strengths of the player's potential) and the player (in both his mental approach toward the game and his physical skill set). It's called "developing a player," not throwing him to the wolves as many fans might have done.

When Al Jefferson came along, Doc realized he was obviously much more developed than Perk had been. Accordingly, Al played in 71 games @ 15 mpg in his rookie season and, by 2007, was unquestionably the main Celtics chip in getting KG to Boston. That's called "development," my friend.

During Tony Allen's initial season, it didn't take Doc long to realize Tony's potential, and Doc played Tony in 77 games @ 16 mpg.

It strikes me that Doc's playing Sullinger quite a bit in his rookie season, even entrusting him with the center position at times despite his size and despite the fact that Sully makes his share of mistakes and is somewhat inconsistent. That's because Doc sees sufficient potential to take the risk of including a less experienced player in a rotation in which one of the main strengths is experience.

Clearly, Doc alters his approach to rookies according to what and when a given rookie's unique strengths become consistently apparent. It's ironic that so many fans are fond of of pleading for consistency in discussing rotation players but implicitly disregard the importance of consistency in justifying the elevation of a rookie to rotation status. I guess the Roman Colosseum mentality is too overpowering at times. Throw 'em to the lions, and who cares if, in even a few prime time minutes, they're responsible for turning half a dozen wins into losses while the fans are clamoring for the team to strive for higher playoff seeds?

Yes, injuries caused a few Celtics players to be promoted a little later than they might have been otherwise. I wonder why armchair coaches who cite such injuries don't also extend the logic to include the fact that, when the replaced players were not injured, Doc felt they were better equipped than the kids to help the team function at its best. And isn't Doc's primary job as the real coach of a contender is to help the team function at its best at all times?

Probably he should have given guys like Pruitt, Bill Walker, Giddens, Lester Hudson and Harangody more floor time because they're all burning up the league now, huh? I saw lots of support for that on this board.

Here we are in a season in which the Celtics are clearly struggling to develop better cohesiveness in their play, and I keep reading about how DL kids should get some "burn" with the Celts. I guess the current level of discontinuity (involving experiments with different lineups of experienced players) isn't enough for some people; they'd prefer to amplify the discontinuity by introducing inexperience to the mix.

However, what really bugs me is not so much whether fans want to see Doc promote players sooner than he does. I understand the rationale (even if I believe it's misplaced) behind such a mentality. What bothers me is that people so glibly characterize Doc as inherently having something against young players. That is simply a provable misrepresentation of fact. Doc believes in developing talent thoughtfully, not in a colosseum mentality.

Merry Christmas,

Sam

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by sam on Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:35 am

W,

Exactly how reluctant was Doc to play Rondo in his rookie season? 78 of 82 games, 24 minutes per game. Somehow, 'reluctant" doesn't quite seem to describe a situation in which Doc was dealing with a headstrong pg who couldn't shoot, averaged only three assists per game, and was in competition with Telfair and, at times, Delonte West.

Does it say anything about Doc's developmental abilities that, by Rondo's second season, his game had been honed to the point where he was qualified to be the point guard on a championship team that had obviously been fortified with guys like KG, Ray and Posey?

Merry Christmas,

Sam

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by 112288 on Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:47 am

Sam,

Merry Christmas to you and Mrs. Sam.

I am not saying Doc is wrong for not playing rooks........it's a tough road to follow.......being competitive ........and trying to evaluate young talent at the same time. Remember........the mind set is to win a championship and winning improves your position (home court) in the playoff run. It also sells tickets. People like to see winning teams...not some rook getting experience.

The problem then comes down to TRUST in a young player....will he execute, will he perform what has been taught him in practice. A mistake here and there could be the difference at the end of home court advantage.

I wish there was an easy answer to how to get young talent evaluated but there is non. I guess the D-League is a half answer in that you can see how guys play on a level above college....but not on an NBA level.

Al Arbour NY Islanders coach had a great coaching philosophy...he would integrate new (rookie) talent into his line up each year so as to keep the team young and get promising rookies an opportunity to gain experience playing with seasoned vets. Even if the rookies made mistakes, the vets were there to minimize the mistake. That is why they were so good for so long. It may be more difficult in basketball as in hockey you could carry 25 guys verses 15 in the NBA.

112288


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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by sam on Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:07 pm

112288,

Who knows what the right approach is. Actually, I believe Doc knows.

For us, perhaps the most important thing right now is to wish one another a wonderful holiday season and a smashing new year.

Sam


Last edited by sam on Tue Dec 25, 2012 12:04 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by 112288 on Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:11 pm

Sam,

Enjoy Santa!

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by worcester on Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:41 pm

Sam, Rondo was an exceptional rookie, clearly better than Telfair or West, yet even Rondo had to spend considerable time on the bench while he developed under Doc's tutelage. I'm not bemoaning Doc's handling of Rondo. He brought him along quite well. I was only referencing Rondo to underscore Doc's reluctance to give rookies, even those as good as Rondo, abundant playing time. That Rondo got 23.5 minutes per game was remarkable, but note that Delonte was injured part of the time and only played 69 games that year. When he went out, Rondo got more playing time, boosting his minutes per game to 23.5, and then Rondo never looked back. Didn't Delonte wind up on the Raptors the next year? It sort of reminded me of the Wally Pipp/Lou Gehrig saga.

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by worcester on Mon Dec 24, 2012 5:49 pm

Sam, after rereading your posts, I readily concur that Doc is a master at coaching/developing young athletes into NBA capable players. I trust his process, which reminds me of the wine commercial, "Never picked beofre its time."

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by sam on Tue Dec 25, 2012 12:09 am

Worcester, please wish Arian all the best in this Christmas season and for 2013.

Sam

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Re: Fab Melo tonight.

Post by bobheckler on Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:51 pm

international wrote:Exactly Bob ,all those ex centers that you mention can do a good job with this young big.Clifford Ray would be another alternative.The fact is that he needs a lot of practice and a lot of advise.Already he has many tools like good footwork,speed for his size,lateral movements and he only lacks experience and offensive moves.


international,

The reason why I didn't mention Clifford Ray is because he's currently employed with the Sacramento Kings and not available. Unfortunately, I don't think DeMarcus Cousins is going to be prominently mentioned in his Big Man Coaching resume.


bob


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