10.02.2009

How Often Will Doc Play the Triple-Tower Lineup?

Rotation with Minutes

Kevin Garnett 28 Baby 16 Rasheed Wallace 4
Kendrick Perkins 28 Rasheed Wallace 14 Baby/Shelden 6
Paul Pierce 26 Marquis Daniels 10 Sheed 12
Ray Allen 30 Eddie House 12 Paul Pierce 6
Rajon Rondo 36 Marquis Daniels 12
Average Minutes Per Game
KG          28
Perk 28
Pierce 32
R.Allen 30
Rondo 36
Sheed 30
Baby 22
Marquis 22
E.House 12
If you listened to Doc's debriefing yesterday, it sounded like he might be regularly playing Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett, and Rasheed Wallace together on the same unit once the season gets underway. If so, the next questions would seem to be how long will the Tall Three be on the floor at the same time and what impact will it have on the rotation?

My answers are 12 minutes and more than you might think.

In the above chart, I have Sheed penciled in for 12 MPGs at the 3 (it could easily be KG at the three, but for now, let's go with #30). That seems like the maximum amount of time we'd want this unit on the floor. Sheed's best position will be the 4 and 5 spots, and it makes sense that we'd want him to devoting most of his energies there. But against some teams there no doubt will be an advantage derived from the Celtics playing a Triple-Tower lineup. Doc may not always play them together for 12 minutes, but I bet he plays them at the same time for at least a few minutes every game, with 12 minutes being the max, except against maybe the purple, the Cavs, and the poodles.

Next up is what impact will playing a triple-tower lineup have on the rotation?

My guess is that since the goal of this lineup is to leverage height, Doc will pull out the stops and stick Squisy at the point and Paul Pierce at the deuce. That's a helluva a tall lineup, with a helluva lot of potential for domination. Playing Rondo, House, or Ray Allen in the backcourt would present other advantages, but early in the season, I am confident Doc will want to determine how much advantage he can exact from a lineup with this length.

As for the question of who will back up Ray Allen if Marquis Daniels is playing the point? Paul Pierce might be the answer for six or more minutes each night, while a big is backing up Paul Pierce (and don't rule out Glen Davis at the 3, either, if only for short stints).

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