Celtics participant highlight: How Danilo Gallinari will be X-factor for C’s initially appeared on NBC Sports activities Boston
If Celtics followers need a sense for a way Danilo Gallinari can influence profitable, they solely want re-watch Boston’s sport in opposition to the Atlanta Hawks on Feb. 24, 2021.
Gallinari completely torched the Celtics that night time, hitting 10 of 12 3-pointers to complete with a game-high 38 factors in Atlanta’s double-digit victory.
Whereas that sport was an anomaly, it is an excessive instance of what Gallinari can deliver to the Celtics within the type of a floor-spacing, 6-foot-10 sharpshooter. (“Dangerous scouting report,” Gallinari quipped to Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens about his 3-point outburst in opposition to Boston.)
Offseason spotlights: Jayson Tatum | Al Horford | Jaylen Brown | Robert Williams | Marcus Good | Malcolm Brogdon | Derrick White | Payton Pritchard
However the place precisely does Gallinari slot in a deep, gifted Celtics rotation, and may he assist Boston recover from the hump? We proceed our Celtics participant highlight collection by highlighting what Gallinari did in Atlanta final season and the way he can maximize his influence together with his new group.
Gallinari’s 2021-22 stats (with Hawks)
Common season: 11.7 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 1.5 apg, 43.4 % FG, 38.1 % 3PT (66 video games)
Postseason: 10.2 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.8 apg, 40.0 % FG, 26.7 % 3PT (5 video games)
Gallinari’s contract scenario
Gallinari signed a two-year, $13.3 million contract with the Celtics on July 12. He’ll make $6.5 million this season and $6.8 million subsequent season if he picks up his participant choice for 2023-24.
What function will Gallinari play on the 2022-23 Celtics?
The Celtics lacked a dependable veteran scorer off the bench final season. They acquired two this offseason in Gallinari and Malcolm Brogdon. Gallinari’s versatility is an asset, as he can spell Jayson Tatum on the wing, Al Horford on the 4 or Robert Williams at heart in small-ball lineups.
Gallinari is not an elite defender, however the Celtics’ group protection must be robust sufficient to cover his limitations. If head coach Ime Udoka sees his offense getting stagnant, he can flip to Gallinari as an outdoor taking pictures menace who can house the ground for Boston’s creators — particularly when the C’s go “small.”
Celtics Speak: Meet the brand new guys: Unique interviews with Malcolm Brogdon and Danilo Gallinari (and Brad Stevens) | Pay attention & Subscribe | Watch on YouTube
“I believe we’re higher set as much as play smaller than we had been, simply due to the dimensions of [Brogdon and Gallinari] And we have lots of completely different choices there,” Stevens informed reporters final month.
Because the Celtics’ second-oldest participant behind Horford (36), the 33-year-old Gallinari can also present precious management for a group that appeared a little bit too inexperienced in opposition to the Golden State Warriors within the NBA Finals.
Gallinari’s season might be a hit if …
… He flirts with 15 factors per sport and stays wholesome for a playoff run.
The Celtics do not want Gallinari to log half-hour per night time or carry a major load on offense. However they do want him to deliver a scoring spark to a Celtics group that ranked twenty sixth within the NBA in bench scoring throughout the common season and 14th amongst 16 playoff groups.
The 14-year veteran is actually able to offering that spark, averaging 15.1 factors over 728 profession video games. He is additionally performed greater than 70 video games in a season simply twice in his prolonged NBA profession, although, so the C’s ought to monitor his minutes to ensure he is well-rested for a deep postseason run.
Greatest impediment to Gallinari’s success
Gallinari is not a horrible defender due to his 6-foot-10 construct. However he’ll normally be the worst defender on the ground for Boston, and groups will look to use the weak hyperlink in an in any other case rock-solid protection by concentrating on him in pick-and-rolls.
If Gallinari is flattening exterior photographs, the Celtics can stay together with his limitations on the opposite finish. But when they discover themselves in a playoff sport the place his shot is not falling and a participant like Milwaukee Bucks famous person Giannis Antetokounmpo is repeatedly scoring on him, it is going to be exhausting to maintain him on the ground.
Projected stats and prediction for Gallinari’s 2022-23 season
Projected stats: 12.8 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 1.3 apg, 44.0 % FG, 39.5 % 3PT
Gallinari ought to see a great quantity of high quality open appears to be like when he is on the ground with Tatum and/or Brown, so we’ll predict a slight bump in his scoring and taking pictures averages. He instantly makes the Celtics higher offensively and offers groups a significant issue to take care of on Boston’s second unit.
The largest query is whether or not Gallinari can maintain up within the postseason, the place groups will look to show him on the defensive finish. But when the Italy native (and childhood Celtics fan) has some well-timed 3-point explosions in him, it would go a good distance towards Boston elevating Banner 18.