Presence in the Paint 2: Can Kwame Brown Be the Boston Celtics' Reserve Center?

Nick Farnsworth@@nfarnswAnalyst IJune 17, 2011

Kwame Brown could help to strengthen the Celtics bench.
Kwame Brown could help to strengthen the Celtics bench.Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Celtics are in desperate need of a reserve center that could give O'Neal the rest required in order for him to stay healthy. Kwame Brown is a fairly strong 6'11" center that is hitting the market this summer and could fit very well with the Celtics team.

The team is in need of some younger players but this can be overlooked in order to split time between O'Neal, Brown, and possibly a young draft choice or free agent. Brown has played for many different teams, but has been a fairly consistent player in the last few years, playing in an average 57 games per season.

Under the direction of the Celtics, it is likely that he would be able to play in most of the games during the regular season and all of the playoffs when he will be most needed. Brown played for the Charlotte Bobcats last season and, although he played for one of the worst teams in the league, he was able to put up some respectable statistics for the team.

The Celtics could entice him away from re-signing with the Bobcats by offering him the chance to win a championship with a veteran team. He would have to settle with being a reserve that splits a solid amount of minutes with the starting center, but this is a possibility if he wants to play and show his worth on a more competitive team.

He has had attitude problems and issues controlling his off-court behavior, but the Celtics is a team that forces their new players to change. Doc Rivers can take a troubled player, as seen in Delonte West, and bring them the focus and determination they need to be a force in this league, on and off the court. Laziness and attitudes don’t last long when you have as strong a force as Kevin Garnett at practice everyday. The veterans will help to build his skills and teach him the correct mindset to help bring Brown more success as a player in the NBA.

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Although Brown is not posting all-star statistics, he did appear to be getting stronger over the year and could bring size and points to a bench that saw few points from bench centers in this year's playoffs. Scoring an average 7.9 points per game would give the Celtics a decent post presence off the bench and his size would allow the other reserves to get open through stronger picks and screens.

Brown is not defensively the strongest player but he does average 0.6 blocks per game and more importantly brings 6.8 rebounds per game, helping to bring the reserves rebound total up. These stats would help the Celtics greatly and the role change of being a reserve would not be too much of a shock for Brown as he averaged 26 minutes per game last season and even less in the seasons before.

The Celtics are dealing with a tight cap do to the expensive salaries of their top players and Brown was only paid $854,389 last season. He will be looking for a raise this year, but Ainge could strike a deal with Brown for a few million, making him a viable replacement to the loss of Nenad Krstic this summer and bringing a solid reserve center to the Celtics.

This deal could be plausible depending on how much money the Bobcats are willing to spend on Brown and whether they pick up a solid center during the offseason. He may not be a long term answer but he could help to solidify the bench and, if he plays well and the Celtics feel they need to make moves, he could become a valuable trade asset.

If a deal could be made then Doc Rivers would be able to put together a solid two or three man rotation at center, limiting O'Neal's minutes while keeping the size the team needs in the game. 

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