Sunday, May 11, 2014
Satch: C's promised to get a center
By Chris Forsberg
Satch Sullinger, the father of Boston Celtics second-year big man Jared Sullinger, and a consistent presence around the team last season, suggested in a recent interview with ABC6 in Columbus, Ohio that the team has promised to acquire a center this offseason in order to move his son back to his more natural power forward position.
The 6-foot-9 Sullinger spent much of his sophomore season playing center due to Boston's lack of pure size. That didn't slow him as he averaged 13.3 points and 8.1 rebounds over 27.6 minutes per game. With eyes towards that power forward future, the Celtics experimented with Sullinger's offensive game, giving him freedom to fire away from beyond the 3-point arc as he worked to stretch his range to the perimeter.
"Next year I think he's going to finally get to play his true position of power forward," Satch Sullinger said in the television interview. "And so, at that point, he's going to come home and he's going to trim down and shed some pounds, so he gets a quicker step and a little more mobility. Because they've kind of promised him that they're going to get a center."
Throughout the 2013-14 season, Sullinger was often asked about the transformation of Kevin Love and his ability to expand his game while getting his body in shape. With his natural rebounding talents, it's fair to wonder if Sullinger could shape his game in a similar way if he was able to more consistently make his 3-point shots (all with a natural center to provide another back-to-the-basket presence).
The Celtics started rookie Vitor Faverani at the center position to open the 2013-14 season, but often leaned on undersized big men like Kris Humphries and Sullinger for the bulk of minutes at the center spot. Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge admitted that the team lacked true rim protection, one of its most glaring weaknesses last season, and hinted that was among the team's top priorities moving forward.
(h/t: CelticsBlog | MassLive | ABC6)