Jared Sullinger to Celtics: Scouting Report, Video Highlights and Analysis
Jared Sullinger lacks elite athleticism and size, but there's no question the Ohio State product has arguably the best offensive post game of any prospect in the draft.
Sully isn't as flashy as someone like Perry Jones or Andre Drummond, but you know exactly what you're getting from him: a polished offensive player with a high floor and a limited ceiling.
The former Buckeye wasn't as impressive during his sophomore year as many were hoping, and as a result saw his stock drop a little bit. Nonetheless, he's heading to the NBA
Let's take a closer look at Sullinger and what he brings to the league.
What Jared Sullinger Brings to the Team
In short, he's an old-school post player.
At 6'9" and 280 pounds, Sullinger has a body that makes him basically unmovable once he gets position in the post. Once he catches the ball, Sully has tremendous footwork and great post moves that allow him to score with ease.
Not only is he good at establishing position and scoring with his back to the basket, Sullinger can face up and will be able to knock down the mid-range jumper in the NBA. During his sophomore season with the Buckeyes, Sullinger extended his range and hit 40 percent from three-point range on over one attempt per game.
Lastly, he is a very, very smart player on the basketball court. He's sees the game well, can pass out of double teams, doesn't make many mistakes, always knows where to be for rebounds and knows how to use his big body effectively (9.7 rpg during his collegiate career).
The downside to Sullinger is also painfully clear, however.
He's a little short for the position and doesn't have great length. In order to make up for that, it would be nice if he had some athleticism, but Sullinger plays way below the rim and won't blow anyone away with his quickness.
Sullinger has struggled with his defense and conditioning as well. More and more athletic power forwards are becoming successful in the NBA, and it will be interesting to see how Sullinger goes up against long, athletic players.
What Experts are Saying
ESPN's Chad Ford is worried about Sullinger's lack of athleticism and inability to truly fit at either big-man position:
Nevertheless, there are major question marks for Sullinger. Despite his slimmed-down physique, Sullinger is an underwhelming athlete. He plays mostly below the rim, doesn't move well laterally and at times still struggles with his conditioning. What complicates matters is that Sullinger is severely undersized for his most natural position (center) and even undersized for the 4 at the next level. His long arms make up some of that difference, but it's been pretty clear for the past two seasons that Sullinger struggles when playing against length.
Sullinger's high basketball-IQ will let him step onto the floor immediately in the NBA.
How many points will Sullinger average his rookie season?
He's a player that isn't going to blow anyone away, but he's going to be able to contribute at the next level without making a ton of boneheaded mistakes.
If the conditioning continues to be a problem, however, don't expect Sully to log a ton of minutes during his rookie season.
The Celtics were ready to take some risks in this draft, first with Sullinger at No. 21, and then, at No. 22, with Fab Melo.
If Sullinger's back holds up, then of course he'll be a big part of the Celtics' transition from the Big Three Era to the Rondo Era, or whatever it will be called—the Fab Jared Era?
If either Melo or Sullinger pans out, Boston will have the big man it badly needs. If both pan out, the ghost of Red Auerbach will light a cigar.
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