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12 Deep?

Just caught Ric Bucher's comments on the summer league.

Boston Celtics. Second-year point guard Marcus Banks was the drawing card as a UNLV alumnus for the first (but not last) summer league held in Vegas, but it was No. 15 pick Al Jefferson and Tony Allen (25th) who showed they could slide right into the Celtics' rotation, particularly if Boston parrots Memphis' up-tempo platoon system, the same approach first-year coach Doc Rivers used to win his 2000 Coach of the Year award in Orlando. Jefferson's midrange J is surprisingly accurate for a 6-foot-10 high schooler and the offense flowed far better with Allen than Banks. Boxing out remains a foreign concept to Jefferson and he looks lost in half-court sets, but his rebounding and ability to run the floor will earn him minutes.

What intreagues me is the notion of the C's playing a deep rotation like Memphis did last year. All along I've been waiting for Ainge to trim down the roster. I tend to think he still would do well to get some quality in exchange for his quantity. However, there is the potential to go 11 or 12 deep and run the heck out of teams that might have a more talented starting lineup. That would solve the Ricky vs. Jiri debate. Play them both! Atkins vs. Banks and West? How about all of the above? What about rolling out a frontcourt of Raef, Al Jefferson, Perkins, and Blount? It could work. Even Pierce could get a much needed breather by working Allen in some minutes. We can't forget about Walter either. Used properly, he could be a classic change of pace, 'annoy the heck out of the other team's tired starting unit' kind of guy.

If implemented properly, this system could even boost our regular season win total much higher than what will be expected. I do wonder (looking waaaay ahead here) how such a system would translate into the playoffs. I've seen the Kings used as a successful example, but even they haven't been to the Finals, and they had a lot more talent on those teams than we do now.

Maybe 12 deep is an exaggeration. But even 10 deep is an upgrade. Regardless, I think the days of O'Brien's 8 deep rotations are a thing of the past, and I couldn't be happier about that.

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