Boston Celtics power forward Juan Hernangomez’ prospects of starting alongside the Jays, Marcus Smart, and Al Horford/Robert Williams definitely look good based on the scuttlebutt that arose out of Cs media day.
The natural power forward has at least one fan of his skillset, and it’s a key guy to have on your side.
That’d be Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens, who traded away two backcourt pieces (Kris Dunn, Carsen Edwards) to land the former first-round pick from the Memphis Grizzlies.
Stevens noted called Hernangomez an “accentuater” when describing how the Spaniard may fit in beside the Jays:
"I think one of his under-discussed great qualities is his cutting. And with all the attention that Jayson and Jaylen get specifically, the right time to cut is an important quality. And so that’s one of the many things that drew us to him.”"
In an ode to former GM Danny Ainge’s quest for ‘shooters with size‘, he also commented on…Hernangomez’ shooting ability and size.
Our very own Mark Nilon likes Hernangomez’ profile as a classic power forward, and it appears Stevens likes some of the ‘old school’–since shooting from the 4 is definitely a very ‘new school’ trait–things he does as well.
Now, I would like to point out at this time that Hernangomez is a career-35% 3-point shooter, so it’s not as though he is antiquated for today’s game.
With that out of the way, it does make sense for a scenario where the man they call “Juancho” ends up starting.
Juan Hernangomez starting at the 4 makes the most sense for the Boston Celtics rotation.
The Eastern Conference is all about supersized frontcourts. Milwaukee won the NBA Championship with Giannis Antetokounmpo at the 3 and could deploy him there again if they decide Bobby Portis is the best P.J. Tucker replacement at the 4. Brooklyn has LaMarcus Aldridge, Blake Griffin, Paul Millsap, and Nic Claxton all potentially lined up for big minutes. Atlanta has John Collins and Clint Capela, New York has Julius Randle and Mitchell Robinson (we think?).
There’s big frontcourts everywhere, and having Jayson Tatum slide down to the 3 will keep him fresher for when the Cs need his shot-creation to get out of rough stretches offensively.
Hernangomez might just have the inside track to the starting power forward job.