Grading Jared Sullinger and Fab Melo
Jared Sullinger – Power Forward, Ohio St.
Last year, Jared Sullinger was a top five pick if he went out for the NBA Draft following his freshmen season. As early as this January, Sullinger was still in the same spot despite the draft becoming deeper than it was the previous season.
Then, suddenly, Jared Sullinger plummeted down draft boards and did not receive an invite to the NBA Draft. What happened?
For Sullinger, the doctors happened. When the combine started for the 2012 draft process, doctors immediately flagged Sullinger as a problem guy because of potential back issues. In addition, he was never a really big guy standing 6-9 at the power-forward position. It was looking more and more like he was more likely to be a bust then turn into a solid productive player for an NBA team.
That would be forgetting the fact that Jared Sullinger quite possibly has the most polished and mature low-post offensive game of any player in this draft. He understands how to create his own shot on the low block with an array of hook-shots and drop shots and the game of basketball seems to come extremely natural to him. That right there is probably one of the biggest compliments you can give anyone in the draft.
What I think of when I see Jared Sullinger is Glen Davis 2.0, right down to the same stocky build and A cup breasts. Before you bash Glen Davis, it can be argued that Glen Davis was the fifth best player on a Celtics team that came within one quarter of winning the NBA Finals. Jared Sullinger has the fantastic opportunity to play extremely well for the Boston Celtics.
Throwing out the back-issues, there was to come a time in the draft when reward for drafting the talent of Jared Sullinger was to far outweigh the risk of drafting Sullinger and his back problem. The early 20′s almost seems like the perfect place for that to happen. If the Celtics get healthy Sullinger, he could do big things in Celtics green.
Plus, isn’t it exciting that Boston has a guy they can call “Sully”?
Fabrico Melo – Center, Syracuse
Fab Melo is big. Standing at 7 feet, 255 pounds he is one of the biggest players in this year’s draft. He is a project player who plays good defense, defends the rim and does little else.
My biggest issue is how he has been described by draft guys. Here’s Chad Ford’s analysis of him:
Melo is big. He’s blocks shots. He rebounds on the offensive glass. He’s a major project, but the Celtics were in desperate need of size. Don’t expect much offensively (though he will take and make an occasional 18-footer), but what they want is a little defense.
Sounds great only one major problem. The Celtics didn’t need size. They needed athleticism. The way Melo is described also sounds like a description for a player that the Boston Celtics already employ.
With hyper athletic guys like Perry Jones III on the board and size on board, you have to question the Celtics thinking here.