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Abdel Nader and Semi Ojeleye have been added to the ranks of the Boston Celtics. The attempt is clearly designed to fill out the back benches. The four-year contracts that have been availed to Nader and Semi are interesting and they should make the sports lines for 2018 Boston Celtics season a more curious spectacle.

After all, with the depth that the Celtics have, it is difficult to imagine that Nader and Semi will get many opportunities to prove their worth. As a 58th overall 2016 draft pick, Nader isn’t the most exciting name out there, even with the D-League rookie honors he took home from his season Maine.

That isn’t to suggest that Nader has nothing to offer. His stats have been relatively respectable. The Celtics could use Nader to augment their depth at the point guard position, though Celtics fans will have to wait for another season before Nader can attempt to prove his worth.

Brad Stevens needs a versatile wing. A player like Nader would have to occupy multiple roles to make the Celtics investment in him bear fruit. Brad has a role to play in all this. He will be expected to deploy the right combinations of lineups without comprising the skill and size of the wing.

Some pundits think Semi Ojeleye has a better chance of fitting into the Celtics mold and being able to complement the superstars with whom he will be matched. Semi has an athletic advantage. He is pretty tall and heavy, the result of the player being drafted from college so late.

Semi stands to bring some much-needed versatility to the team. Semi was the 37th overall draft pick. He has held his own in the game of football since then. Brad admitted that Semi’s defensive capabilities caught his eye fairly early on, this along with his flexibility.

With the right opportunities, Semi could give the best defenders in the team a run for their money.

Of course, anyone that understands the game will keep in mind the fact that Semi and Nader are two rookies on their first contracts. All the speculation in the world won’t mean anything until the pair actually gets their minutes in the Celtics rotation and prove their mettle.

Semi and Nader’s contracts might seem like risks, especially considering how long they are, but one has to keep in mind the fact that the contracts are not fully guaranteed. If Semi doesn’t prove his abilities in the first two seasons, then he is in trouble. Nader should thank his lucky stars that he has the first year guaranteed.

Ainge still has a few draft picks he needs to make. The versatility of Nader and Semi’s contracts allow him some flexibility to make the right decisions.

The back of a bench is very important, despite what some people assume. It acts as a balancing tool in the face of a capped out team. Ainge knows that Semi and Nader might not work out. But he knows that the Celtics will be fine so long as he can keep valuable rotation players around with lengthy but lucrative deals.

Staff 7/18/2017 02:02:00 PM Edit
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