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Celtics’ big man search: Ryan Hollins

For the last three seasons, Ryan Hollins [1] has been an NBA rotation player. First with Minnesota in 2009 and then with the Cavaliers [2], Hollins has averaged about five points and three rebounds per game as a 16-minute backup center. He’s 7 feet tall, but there’s really nothing that stands out about his game.

He doesn’t create his own shot and while he has a decent touch around the basket and can make a long-distance jumper on occasion, he’s a career 66 percent free throw shooter. He’s the worst defensive rebounding center [3] among players with 20 or more games who play 10-plus minutes per Hoop Data, and he isn’t much of a shot blocker for a 7-footer.

But Hollins is now available after the Cavaliers waived him [4], and once he clears waivers he’ll undoubtedly be on the Celtics [5]‘ list. Despite his overall mediocrity, Hollins has some value to a team like the Celtics. He is athletic and can run the floor, two areas that are in major need of an upgrade.

He’s a center, and with Greg Stiemsma [6] laboring with a sore right foot, the C’s need some protection behind Kevin Garnett [7], who has played a lot of minutes –about 34 a night — on this road trip. Hollins isn’t a fun name like J.J. Hickson [8], or as proven as Ronny Turiaf [9], but he is healthy and had been regularly up until the trade deadline.

As with the other candidates, the Celtics will have to make room on their roster with 15 players under contract. An obvious choices to be waived is Jermaine O’Neal [10] who elected to have season-ending wrist surgery.