I read the recent SB Nation article "Supersized Frontlines, Not Star Perimeter Players, Key To Recent Championships" by Jonathan Tjarks and found the article rather interesting as it shared alot of my views also.
As a fan of basketball who grew up watching the long and big Celtic teams of the 80's and who has ever since enjoyed seeing basketball teams trying to win titles by utilizing front court depth, size and length along with speed and quickness ( and there have been many of them through the years) I agree fully with the article.
I also thought it would be interesting to apply the point of the article to the current Boston Celtics team.
Last year the Celtics were loaded with great depth, length and size in the front court (at least on paper before injury's hit the team ) when they started the season with a front court makeup of KG, Perk, Shaq, J.O. and Erden and later in the season after the Perk & Erden trade also, when Kristic and Murphy were added to the roster.
The C's last year had even greater depth, length and size in the front court then the championship team in 08 and was also one of the deepest, longest and bigger Celtic teams in the front court in Celtics history .
But that was last year and now with Perk and Erden gone, Kristic playing overseas (at least for now) Shaq retired and Murphy unsigned the front court depth, length and size the has disappeared.
Now if Ainge sticks with the current veteran core for one more run this season (if there is a season) the only bigs currently on the roster with size and length are KG, J.O. and rookie J.J.
Considering this lack of depth, length and size in the front court and the health and age issues surrounding KG & J.O. and J.J. being a rookie the C's will probably no doubt have to acquire some more big men heading into next season to add additional depth, length and size to the front court.
I personally would like to see the C's add (again if Ainge sticks with the core for one more run) some more depth, length and size to the front court (especially at center) by signing some dual combination of low cost, short term free agent big men like Thomas, Battie or Pryzbilla.
I also would not mind the C's resigning a additional 3rd big in Murphy as he (along with J.J.) would provide depth, length and size at the back up 4 position that the C's have not had in years, especially if Baby is not resigned or Ainge trys to sign and trade Baby (as I would prefer) for some other player need or draft pick.
Though the above bigs are low cost players, older players, I think they still would be able to contribute nicely coming off the bench for the C's as back ups and would also add depth, length and size to the front court that the C's lack at the moment.
I also think signing such low cost, short term bigs mentioned above to 1 year deals to supplement the current bigs on the roster would be a win-win situation since it would give the C's good depth, size and length to compete better next season (especially against big front line teams) for a title,
at the same time would also not sacrifice future cap space in 2013 either, allowing the C's to maintain financial flexibility at that time to go out and try to sign young players to rebuild the team, one such player I hope possibly being Howard, who would be a ultimate big who could continue the trend of helping the C's maintain length and size in the front court .
With Doc Rivers being quoted in the past saying:
“Having frontcourt size is good, it’s important during the regular season, it’s vital during the playoffs"
having won a NBA title in 2008 and almost in 2010 utilizing great front court size and Ainge having played on many successful Celtic teams in the 80's who won several titles utilizing great front court size, I assume and hope they also see the need and will go about adding additional front court length and size to the Celtics prior to the start of next season (if there is one) .
So with all the above said, a interesting question to now ask is, are the points made in Jonathan's article and my opinions above valid, that front court size is important and that if the C's want to compete for a title next season, they will have to follow the blueprint of adding additional size and length to the front court, which has been a successful recipe for winning titles for many recent and past NBA teams including also some recent and past Boston Celtic teams?