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According to Mark J. Miller of Yahoo! Sports, reports are surfacing that 32-year-old fan favorite Brian Scalabrine maybe be saying farewell not just to the Celtics, but the entire NBA, to the dismay of many Celtic fans. According to reports, there is a possibility that Scal could be on his way to signing a deal with a European basketball team. It’s no surprise that the market isn’t very demanding for a 32-year-old veteran who averaged 1.9 points and 0.9 rebounds in 2009. Those stats come from playing in only 52 regular season games, with an average on 9.1 minutes of playing time. Nevertheless, it seems the offers haven’t been quite what Brian Scalabrine is looking for, and now there’s a chance he could take his talents to the other side of the world in the next step of his basketball career.
It’s regrettable to say, because Scalabrine seems like such a good guy, but if he were to go to Europe this coming season, there’s not much that the Celtics would be missing out on at all. He plays pretty good defense for a bench player, but that’s really about it. He struggled with his shooting last year, and on top of that, he’s still in rehabilitation this offseason due to a shoulder surgery. With the signings of Jermaine and Shaquille O’Neal to fill in while Kendrick Perkins recovers from offseason surgery, it seems that the “big man” position is covered for the time being, which, unfortunately, could spell the end of the road for Scalabrine’s days as a Celtic.
Perhaps Euro-style play would be good for Scalabrine. He’s never been known as a slasher at all, and that playing style is rare in Europe compared to what it is here in the United States. As more of a shooter than anything else on the offensive end, Scal could benefit himself and a European team from being the guy that does nothing else but hang on the three-point line. He almost certainly won’t be a superstar in any situation, but his numbers could see an increase with more playing time and an offense that suits his playing style.
For Celtics fans, the loss hurts much deeper than what you see on paper. At least according to how the media portrays him, Scalabrine is a true class act. He recently took part in charity work associated with Feed the Children, but he’s always been known for giving back to the community. And what a personality. He’s got a great sense of humor in television and radio interviews, and for someone who didn’t play a single minute during the Finals in which the Celtics won the title, has anyone ever heard such an awesome attitude from a player’s press conference? As for on the court, all one needs to do is look for the bright red hair to know that one of the Celtic favorites is about to get some playing time. Few sounds are louder than the thunderous roar created when Brian Scalabrine nails a three. The people love him, and with good reason. He’s certainly not the best, but it’s almost impossibly hard to argue he’s not one of the most fun to watch.
It’s a real shame that these attributes aren’t enough to earn a roster spot. A hard worker, a fan favorite, and man of class can all be associated with Brian Scalabrine. However, unfortunately and understandably, basketball is as much a business as it is a game and a sport, and in Brian Scalabrine’s case, it’s looking more and more probable that this time, the nice guy’s going to finish last.