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Most of us agree that Rudy Fernandez would be a great addition to the Celtics.  But there is a snag here.  I found this quote from his coach in Portland:

"Let me put it this way," McMillan said. "Rudy is a team player, and his style of play requires minutes. He's not a guy who is just going to come down and jack up a shot. He needs to get into a flow, into a rhythm, and that's not a backup role. And I think that is his frustration."
So here is another guy who is frustrated by coming off the bench and needs to get into a rhythm to be effective.  It makes me see the value of an Eddie House or a Nate Robinson who can come into the game cold and knock down big shots right away.  I think that's why Danny re-signed Nate and why House has come back into the conversation as well.  That kind of role player is needed on a team's bench because everyone can't start and most of the time when the bench comes in they have to immediately produce or the team will give up a lead or dig a hole.

But, that's another story, back to Rudy. As constituted now, Rudy would be no better off on the Celtics than he is on the Blazers.  He wants a trade because he is frustrated with having to come off the bench behind Brandon Roy and sees no way to get around that one.  And he is probably right.  Roy is a young talent and isn't moving out of the starting lineup any time soon.

But, here's a thought.  How about moving Ray to the bench and bring him in as 6th man.  The 6th man role was developed by Red and has been a Celtics tradition since he first used the role for Frank Ramsey who played behind Bob Cousy and Bill Sharman during the early part of the Celtics' dynasty years. Though Ramsey was one of the Celtics' best players, he felt comfortable coming off the bench and Auerbach wanted his best players fresh and in the lineup at the end of close games. John Havlicek was probably the most famous 6th man for the Celtics as he revolutionized the role during his 16-year career.  Kevin McHale also served as 6th man during part of his time with the Celtics.

Ray is a veteran who doesn't need to get into the flow.  Ray had to change his game more than anyone when this team was first put together and he never complained about it and I think he would accept the 6th man role without complaint either.  He is a student of the history of the game and knows the history and importance of the 6th man throughout Celtics history and see it not as a demotion as some might see it.

Bringing Ray off the bench would assure his legs would be fresher at the end of the game and also prolong his career.  Ray played a lot of minutes last season because along with starting, he also played along with the second unit many times to bring them stability.  This would slightly reduce his minutes and give the stability to the second unit that it needs.  Ray is already a Hall of Famer but he can add to his legacy by joining the long line of Hall of Famers who have also been 6th men on the Celtics and at the same time, help bring Banner 18 to the team.

Don't forget to visit the Celtics Green Forums.

FLCeltsFan 7/28/2010 11:58:00 AM Edit
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13 Responses so far.

  1. JR says:

    I think Rudy would be content on the Celtics bench. There's about 36 mins available behind Pierce and Ray. The majority of those would be his to lose. As long as his defense is adequate he would be ahead of Marquis on the depth chart. Eventually in a year or 2 he could be a starter.

    He just wants to play. It's like if an American star went overseas to play and found himself rotting on the pine.

  2. tb727 says:

    I agree with you FL- I don't think he'd fit in well in Boston. He wants playing time and due to overexpansion he can get that opportunity somewhere (see Brewer, Ronnie). If this was back in the 1980s he'd be lucky to be on a team.

    Plus he's a defensive sieve. I think he's overrated and want nothing to do with him.

  3. JR says:

    Don't mind tb727 Rudy. Don't take it personal. TB hates all European players. I remember his book "Thanks Dino Radja for Ruining My Teenage Years." Funny read though. Rudy has said he was happy during his rookie year when I believe he came off the bench. I can understand his frustration from being encouraged to move across the world and going from a star to riding the pine. No one would enjoy that. Plenty of mins in Boston.

  4. My point is that maybe, even if Rudy would be fine coming off the bench, it would be a good thing to bring Ray off the bench. It would give that stability to the second unit that Doc overplays Ray to do. It would also assure that Ray would be fresher for the end of games. Doc hasn't really used the concept of a 6th man the way Red established it and I think it's time that we returned to the classic 6th man and Ray would be perfect.

  5. JR says:

    I agree FL that Ray would make an amazing 6th man. I can't see Doc making the switch right off the bat, but I could see it in the future. I've felt that the missing piece the past two years for us has been the 6th man. posey filled that role perfectly in 07/08.

  6. tb727 says:

    Far from it- I've enjoyed many European players over the years and some of them have been very talented. Sabonis was amazing. So was Detlef. Dirk, Petrovic. Other guys like Sarunas could ball. I just think he's an overrated pretty boy who had a nice dunk over Dwight Howard in the Olympics but is a below-average NBA player. I've seen him play enough to know I'd take Delonte or Josh Howard over him in a NY minute...

  7. tb727 says:

    He reminds me of Antoine Riggadeau

  8. Jenda says:

    I would prefer Rudy as a 6th man. It's not a shame to come off the bench for Ray Allen because... well because it's RAY ALLEN we're talking about! I think it would be better for Ray's psychic.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I just wanted to say rudy signed with Real Madrid in spain so hes unavailable

  10. Rudy isn't a free agent available to sign in Spain. He is under contract to Portland for 3 more years. For him to go anywhere, it has to be via trade.

  11. Anonymous says:

    wow i was just persuaded that rudy would be a great addition and ray would be awesome coming from the bench!

    got me some serious thinking here

  12. ACF says:

    Nice writeup, FL. I do think, though, like JR said, that Rudy would be content with bench minutes, even more so if we're talking about around 36 minutes. Also, if Rudy came to Boston, he'd be on a serious contender, instead of being on a team that's good but would never stand a chance against LA.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Rudy will either go to Bulls/ Celtics and blazers are asking for a 1st round pick knicks cant offer one till 2014. Sheeds contract + 1st round pick seems reasonable

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