Quantcast 2011 Boston Celtics Basketball: Replacing Kendrick Perkins

 

Replacing Kendrick Perkins


As you may have already seen on ESPN, the Skidmore College spring intramural basketball league recently had its opening day. My team, Roll Tide, is a mishmash of golfers, the catcher on the baseball team, a Government major, a freshman, and myself. We don’t have any real basketball players, size, or chemistry, but what we do have is Donny. Donny is a former lacrosse player who looks about as comfortable on a basketball court as a hooker in church. He has the footwork of a blind elephant, and couldn’t hit the side of a barn with a jump shot. Why then, you might ask, is Donny on our team? Because when an opposing player tries to get into the paint, Donny isn’t afraid to knock him down with an elbow to the chest. In the two games we have played, he has committed somewhere in the vicinity of thirty fouls. Without any actual basketball skills, Donny has set a tone for our team and given us an identity. Nobody is getting into our paint without taking a hit.

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As ridiculous as it may sound, my intramural basketball team has something that the Celtics do not. When they decided to trade Kendrick Perkins, the Celtics gave up more than just rebounds, blocks, and defense; they gave up the Perkins scowl. Whenever Perk clobbered an opposing big man in the paint, whenever he obliterated a guard with one of his patented brick wall picks, and especially when he threw down a thunderous dunk we would see the scowl. The Perkins scowl is the kind of glare that could probably kill a small child; it’s not exactly the kind of look you would be glad to see on the face of a 6-10, 280 pounder.

The Celtics now have a giant-sized vacuum to fill in the paint; they desperately need an intimidator if they want to win a championship. Glen Davis is way too small; Kevin Garnett may be the defensive captain, but he’s not bulky enough to intimidate. Troy Murphy is going to be tossed around by Dwight Howard like a rag doll and Nenad Kristic, are you kidding me? The man is balding for god’s sake. Fittingly, the Celtics hopes lie in the O’ Neal brothers. If Shaq is healthy, the Celtics will have an offensive and defensive force who, amazingly, is actually bigger than Kendrick Perkins. The Big Fossil only has to throw down Rondo’s alley oops and protect the paint; it shouldn’t be that hard for a guy who has arms bigger than Nate Robinson. Jermaine O’Neal is only 32 years old, but has been in the NBA since the age of 10. His knees are basically made out of silly putty at this point, and he’s seen the scalpel so many times that Danny Ainge signed his surgeon to a four year contract. However, in the short time he has played this year Jermaine has played solid defense and rebounded well. Nobody is expecting him to score 25 points a game anymore, he only needs to block a few shots and box out.


So, should we feel confident in the Celtic’s ability to protect the paint against LeBron James, Derrick Rose, and Kobe Bryant when everything rests on the shoulders of the O’Neal’s? I don’t think it would be wise to count out the best big man of the past decade and a veteran former All-Star with something to prove. One thing is certain: neither of these guys is ready to be put in a museum quite yet.

 

By: Jared Seigal
Pro Basketball Fans Staff Writer


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