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Your Morning Dump… Where the Celtics draft a bad back and maturity issues

Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.

Sullinger, a talented 6-foot-9 post player and rebounder, got by without a lot of lift in his game, and some question about his ability to score over long defenders. His back issues, which plagued him over his two years as a Buckeye, caused his slide down the board, though Danny Ainge had him graded as a top 10 talent. With averages of 17.5 points and 9.2 rebounds, he was close to a double-double performer as a sophomore.

As for those back issues, the Celtics didn’t seem to be nearly as alarmed as the teams picking ahead of them who normally would have been in the market for an accomplished post scorer.

“I played for 13 years with a bad back and was OK, and he will be, too,” said Doc Rivers, in Newark, N.J., last night to support his son, Austin, taken by New Orleans with the 10th overall pick.

“Our doctors checked him out, and they didn’t give him a red flag. When you don’t get red-flagged, it will pretty much be OK.”

The Celtics then made a decided move toward the future by picking Melo — a project center who had maturity issues during his two years at Syracuse, most notably involving his conditioning. But the 7-foot-1 Brazilian is solid on the defensive end and was considered one of the best shot blockers on the board. Given that he played in a zone his entire college career, there are questions about how Melo will handle more intense defensive responsibilities.

Herald – Celtics making big choices

Are you glass half full or half empty person? While my headline may be a tad bit negative, I’m not sour on the Celtics draft picks.

Let’s start with Jared Sullinger. A bull of a player who can rebound. He’s not super athletic, but we should be drooling at the prospect of having a rebounder on this team. He has a herniated disc. While back injuries are scary, they are not death sentences for players. Danny Ainge said Sullinger might need surgery. I sure hope he’s not talking about the immediate future. I’d hate to see Sullinger miss summer league and training camp. As some media members have pointed out, Avery Bradley slid in the 2010 draft because of an ankle injury. He sure looks fine to me now.

Fab Melo is a project. He’s a defensive talent who played zone in college. He’s going to block some shots, but he’s likely going to be horrific in pick-and-roll defense. He might remind us of Kendrick Perkins. He’s not a scholar. The best remedy for a guy with maturity issues is time spent with Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. Let’s hope he can at least listen.

Check out NBA.com’s player metric draft profiles on these guys. Pretty cool stuff. Jared Sullinger | Fab Melo | Kris Joseph

The rest of the links:

Globe – Bigger is better | Ainge talks KG, says Sullinger has disc issue | Rivers goes 10th | C’s select Joseph in 2nd round | Ainge has deft touch | ESPN Boston – Celtics gamble on Sullinger, Melo | Sullinger, Melo to Celtics | CSNNE – Celtics take gambles, add size with questionable players | When it comes to NBA level defense, Melo not yet your man | Source: C’s interested in Bass for May | Herald – Celtics not backing off Sullinger | C’s stars pass wisdom on to picks | Rivers sees value in Melo | Doc set for new rival, his son | Yahoo! – Suns will pursue Ray Allen |

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  • kricky

    Call me crazy, but I have a good feeling about Sullinger. I think his skill and craftiness around the basket will be fun to watch.

    Plus we can just start calling him Sully — a great nickname for a Celtic!

  • Astarot

    This piece shows everything what I was about to point out about those picks. None of those it’s a safe pick. Sullinger is a potential steal but you never know considering his back problems and that he’s undersized. With guy like Melo, true 7ft but not the best one up there with a lot to learn it’s even more guessing. One think comes through my mind, if you can get someone like Perry Jones III with 22 pick – player with weaknesses but pure talent who can fire off guided by someone like Rivers – you gotta take one. It would not be safe pick either but as I said pure talent. Other than that I think it couldn’t be much better for the Celtics.

  • RedsLoveChild

    Given their draft position, Ainge could not have done better.

    If the “problems” surrounding Sully and Fab turn out to be overrated, which is very possible…Boston hit the jackpot!

  • http://thegreatoutthere.blogspot.com Matt W

    With White and Harkless going earlier, I like these picks. Sullinger worries me for the obvious reasons, but there’s a lot of upside. As for Melo, everyone’s talking about how he might remind people of Perk like that’s a bad thing. I recall that working out better than not having Perk. A serviceable center who can block shots and get rebounds sounds good to me.

  • I bleed green in L.A.

    In Danny we trust right. I think it was a great draft, addressed our needs: youth and rebounding.

  • vivek NJ

    i dont see how a herniated disc can inhibit his talent. ofcourse it reduces the lift . but with yoga practise for the back, sullinger can live as if he doesn’t have it. all he need to do is keep his hamstrings loose if it is a lumbar herniation. in my opinion simple yoga exercises for back helps more than surgery.

  • classless

    So unless JJJ and Moore play next year, this team went from old and slow to young and slow. Will we ever see a fast break in which guys are ahead of Rondo?

  • Chief

    Am happy with sully…..and for the 21st pick he’s a steal, and let’s not forget fab melo is still real young might take him a little longer to get it.
    Somehow I think Danny isn’t done yet.

  • zippittyay

    I will give the Celtics a “B” on this draft. The guys I wanted them to get were gone (White & Nicholson), but ones I didn’t expect were available. Sully has never impressed me enough to think he was top 10 talent. Fab reminds me of Greg Oden (injuries notwithstanding). Had it been my choices, I would have taken Arnett Moultrie and Perry Jones III. Strange how they lasted as long as they did even after we passed on them.

  • Manny

    I’m actually fine with the melo pick. He is athletic and physical for those who don’t know. All last season we were talking about Rondo needs players who can run with him. So I was surprised with the sully pick. I’ve watched perry jones his whole baylor career, he would fit in better than I think sully would. And what is up with the Celtics new trend of drafting players from the same school?

  • CoachBo

    Love the Sully pick. Lots of people succeed with disk – it’s disk, Andy Katz – issues.

    Hate, hate, hate the Melo pick. Fixing maturity issues is very, very difficult.

  • Dan White

    Missing one game at Ohio State in 2 seasons. Those numbers dont lie. At least I hope not. This back thing is already overplayed and for the 21st pick, you could not ask for a better “downside”. Soo much better than Royce