Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!
by Tom Halzack
Update from Jason Quick's Twitter: Rudy trade talks likely on back burner until Sunday. GM Cho tells agent Andy Miller he will meet w/coach McMillan in Vegas on Sun to discuss
The Boston Celtics are currently in the ‘lead position’ in negotiations with the Portland Trailblazers for Rudy Fernandez, according to a source. They have been in serious discussions since yesterday.
Other teams interested include New York and Chicago, but the Celtics are apparently getting the first shot, thus allowing one to assume they are a preferred destination, either in terms of desirability for Rudy or trading pieces for the Blazers.
Because of that information, I contacted Jason Quick, beat writer for the Oregonian (entering his 10th year), who was kind enough to offer an everyday observer and accomplished writer’s view of Rudy Fernandez.
From that conversation…
Rudy sees the court well and will, at times, go for the between the legs (or the other players legs) pass. His teammates have to be alert for passes at any time as Rudy loves to pass and plays a very unselfish game when he gets the ball.
Fernandez feels that he is more than a one dimensional player and just wants the chance to prove it.
Jason agrees that Rudy isn’t among the quickest afoot, and doesn’t beat many people off the dribble, but says it wouldn’t be fair to characterize him as slow either. He gets open often by constantly running around the court through screens, similarly to Reggie Miller (or Rip Hamilton – my thought). He also is able to get free of his defender by running him into picks.
Rudy has added a tear drop shot in the lane in games, that he has been working on for a while in practice. While not a reliable shot yet, it should improve with time.
Rudy has quick hands and is a good anticipator in passing lanes. He was 3rd on the team in steals (62) and excellent in steals per minute played (2.06 per 48 minutes).
From Jason Quick’s recent article…
Fernandez, 25, is unhappy in Portland because of limited playing time behind All-Star Brandon Roy and because of the playing style of coach Nate McMillan, who primarily used Fernandez as an outside shooter, not the playmaker Fernandez believes he can be in the NBA.
Because of Rudy’s build he can be challenged defensively in the post at times and backed down by larger guards. Fernandez is 6’ 6" and is listed at 185 lbs. With a solid frontline and the help defense that the Celtics play that would be minimized.
Jason thought Rudy’s defense would improve and he would be smart and quick enough to pick up the Celtics’ ‘help rotation style’ of defense.
So, the Celtics are working to see if something can be arranged with the Blazers.