No matter how well a rookie plays in his first season, there invariably comes a moment where he gets somewhat humbled on the court by an NBA veteran. Here at All Ball, we’ll do our best all season to keep track of these moments, which we’re calling “Welcome to the NBA” …
By Jeff Case
Undrafted rookie big man Vitor Faverani has been a nice find for the Celtics in the season’s early going. He had two solid, early performances, including 13 points and three blocks in the season-opener vs. Toronto and 12 points, 18 rebounds and six blocks against the Bucks on Nov. 1. His minutes have dried up a bit of late — due mostly to the improved play of veterans Brandon Bass and Jared Sullinger — but he logged 27 minutes against the Grizzlies and reigning Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol.
Faverani got a good look at why Gasol is one of the more polished offensive post players in the NBA, though, the other night. Gasol catches the ball after setting a pick for Mike Conley, fakes a jump shot and then backs down Faverani. Gasol then turns into the paint and puts up a nice scoop shot under the outstretched arms of Faverani.
Can’t fault Faverani too much here … he played Gasol about as well as you can play him. And, barring something worse than this, his Welcome to the NBA moment has come and gone.