Analysis of the Boston Celtics' Addition of Rasheed Wallace
As you all know, the Celtics negotiated with free agent forward Rasheed Wallace, who has verbally agreed to join the C's, and looks to sign a two-year deal for the full mid-level exception on Wednesday.
The addition of Sheed will impact the team in a way I can't yet figure out. His off-court attitude will certainly be a problem, especially if he's going to be with us for two years (unless trades or injuries change that). But it's been said that teammates love him and guys think he's a winner. After all, Kevin Garnett did hunt him down.
After the jump, analysis on the great Rasheed Wallace (kidding on the "great" part guys, no need to bash me...or is there?).
Rasheed used to get T'd up literally every single game when in Portland. A Trail Blazers game wouldn't have been the same without Rasheed getting all worked up with the referees.
And with Detroit? Well, let's just say altercations involving Sheed that I can remember right away aren't that far back in history (final minutes of Game Six, 2007-08 Eastern Conference Finals).
I really can't be sure on whether or not Wallace is a problem in the locker room. His bad behavior on the court tilts to the "locker room cancer" side, but there have also been many hints of Rasheed being a great teammate.
Wallace's actions, although puzzling at the time, may be explained.
A logical solution I've come up with is that he can't stand to lose. If that was the case, then I'd be willing to put up with his partial stupidity and stubbornness.
Think about it. Wallace has had a reputation of complaining to the refs because of what he thought were bad calls. He was upset and thought his team was being cheated, so he confronted the officials (in a not so pleasant manner) whenever this occurred (which, seeing his number of technicals, was apparently many times).
Whenever Wallace lost a crucial game or elimination game, he proceeded to express his anger or frustration by either throwing towels at the cameraman, using profanity, engaging in both actions, or proceeding to blame someone else for his behavior.
Hopefully though, we Celtics fans won't have to experience this.
However, I'm not quite sure of Sheed's willingness to work. He's always been a decent defender, but has he ever endured a Kevin Garnett defensive workout? I wouldn't think so.
He's getting older and his stubborness may cause trouble for the team. I'm 100 percent sure that Sheed wants to win a championship. It's what he'll do to get one that's questionable.
With a veteran core of Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen, along with the assistance of head coach Doc Rivers, I'd say it wouldn't be hard to whip Wallace into shape before the season. But don't forget that young Rajon Rondo seems to have attitude problems himself. I don't like the idea of the C's completely focusing on Rasheed and letting Rondo go unnoticed in the clubhouse.
Rasheed Wallace's production has gone down. That's pretty obvious to most of you. Still, a guy who can knock down the three, score on put-backs, rebound, and play decent defense is exactly what we are looking for.
A reduced amount of playing time would greatly benefit Wallace, which is what he would get in Boston as he would be playing behind Garnett. Imagine how effective Wallace would be playing 20-25 minutes off of the bench!
I can't see Sheed averaging any less than eight to 10 points and five to six rebounds. He'd likely play both the center and power forward positions. If the Celtics somehow re-signed Glen Davis or signed another big free agent, Wallace would sub in for Kendrick Perkins as well as Kevin Garnett.
He could be a deadly bench player in the Celtics offensive system. When taking Perkins' place, he'd come out to the top as the center usually does to move the ball.
But with a guy like Sheed being inserted into that system, it wouldn't be that simple for the opposing team. He could create a lot of space as he'd draw his guy out with him and clear room for the driving lanes of Pierce and Rondo. If his man didn't come out, it'd be an easy three points most of the time.
The signing of Rasheed Wallace would also help Kevin Garnett. Garnett is also in a need of a decrease in minutes, something that would take place with Wallace on the team.
But I don't think the Celtics would have reason to change things in their offensive system. Wallace's game is very similar to KG's, in his ability to hit a long jumper as well as his rebounding game (though worse than Garnett's), and variety of moves in the post.
On the court, Rasheed Wallace would significantly improve Boston's chances of winning a championship. Off-court issues should be a concern for the Celtics, though.
Then again, with Sheed, you can only take it one step at a time. Let's see how tomorrow and Thursday (the day he'll be introduced to the media) go for a start.
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