OK, I'm upset. I knew not to buy into the initial reports when they were being tweeted in real time about how everything looked OK with the ligaments until Gallo had the MRI. You never know what can happen until the swelling goes down and they get a look. But then he came out of the MRI and Shams reported that the ACL was in tact and that it was a meniscus tear. Unfortunate for sure, but not the worst case scenario. Gallo was projected to be back sometime in November (my gut still thought December). It looked like we avoided disaster.
Turns out, he did tear his ACL and his season is most likely over. Awesome. Fucking awesome.
I mean what the hell is going on and why is this team somehow cursed when it comes to injuries? What do I have to do to stop this madness, I'll do anything at this point. Enough is enough already, the season hasn't even started yet!
The fact that we won't get to see lineups with Gallo at the 5 is certainly disappointing. With the plan to limit the load on Al Horford, this is a pretty big loss considering the Celts are now even more thin upfront. His ability to stretch the floor and knock down open threes was going to be a legit weapon for Ime to unleash in a wide variety of lineups. Having a proven legit bench shooter was a big time offseason need that Gallo filled, and now that's gone. We saw in the Finals what not having enough shooting depth did in terms of playable second unit guys. Considering you can pretty much pencil in Gallo for 38-40% from three, that's now a decent sized hole.
I imagine this is why you heard the Melo rumors earlier this week. In terms of position and skillset, he does fit the mold of what they need. Other than him, the names are not great that are still on the market in terms of a stretch shooter. I was able to talk my brain into being in on Melo, but that was on a fill-in basis while we all thought Gallo would eventually return. Something like 10 minutes a night. I'm not sure I want that number bumped to around 20 minutes and a larger role, but Brad's options are certainly limited.
He and Ime could decide to just have more small ball lineups and increase the run of Sam Hauser which they should do anyway, but they need to find an additional body in my opinion. The last thing I want is the rotation guys having to play more minutes and maybe out of position over the course of the year. The goal is to have everyone rested and healthy for the postseason. That's why the addition of Gallo for the MLE was so valuable. He could give you those 15-20 minutes to spell guys like Horford. With Theis now off the roster, they don't really have that bench vet outside of Luke Kornet. Maybe guys like Dwight AND Melo? I dunno, I'm spitballing in real time here.
At the end of the day, this doesn't really change the Celts floor, I mean they were pretty fucking good last year with Gallo playing a total of zero minutes. Malcolm Brogdon still exists. But there's no denying this is a blow for how they wanted to play in 2022 and absolutely hurts their depth. I think it's a little unfair to think Al Horford will sustain that same level of production we saw last year, which is why the team wanted to load manage him this year making the Gallo signing important. That's now out the window.
I trust Brad will figure it out because he's a fucking basketball wizard. But there's no denying this is a tough break for a guy who looked to be in great shape and had a skillet the team really needed. Not only that, but we won't be able to use this thing at any point this season
What a kick to the dick right before the long weekend. God dammit.