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.
Who? Yeah, that was pretty much every Celtics fans’ reaction last night around 11:30pm when the news broke. With Chris Wilcox now out for roughly a month, and the C’s already in desperate need of some rebounding & defense, they’ve signed shot-blocking specialist Jarvis Varnado:
ESPN Boston-Celtics sign Jarvis Varnado:
Varnado, a 6-foot-9 forward, averaged 14 points, 10 rebounds and 3.9 blocks per game in 10 appearances for the Sioux Falls Skyforce this season. The 24-year-old was drafted in the second round (41st overall) of the 2010 draft by the Miami Heat. He spent time in Israel and Italy before landing in the D-League this winter.
The Celtics had an open roster spot after Darko Milicic left the team last month. Boston’s need for a big man was heightened when Doc Rivers disclosed today that center/forward Chris Wilcox will miss about a month due to a right thumb issue.
Varnado is an athletic big man who can rebound and block shots. The Celtics, who struck gold when they signed Greg Stiemsma last season after his time in Sioux Falls, are hoping to find another serviceable young big via the Skyforce.
Varnado was the SEC’s Defensive Player of the Year 3 times while at Mississippi State, and broke the all-time record for career blocked shots, formerly held by Shaq, with his 413th swat in 2009. He was with the NBDL’s Sioux Falls Skyforce before Boston snatched him up, where he earned performer of the week honors earlier this month. During that week, Varnado led his squad to a 3-0 record with averages of 15 pts, 9 rebs & a D-League high 5.7 blocks.
Jarvis spent the last few seasons playing in Italy and Israel. He had 65 blocked shots for Italy’s Carmatic Pistoia in 2010-11, which earned him the nickname “Tornado Varnado”:
Here’s a clip of Varnado breaking the blocked-shots record while at Mississippi State:
No word yet on when JV will officially join the team and you can read a bit more on him over at his Wiki page.
The rest of the links: