Tacko Fall took the Las Vegas Summer League by storm, quickly becoming a fan favourite because of his height at 7-foot-6.
For reference, Dallas Mavericks' centre Boban Marjanovic was the tallest player in the NBA last season at 7-foot-3 - Fall has three inches (and 20 lbs.) on Boban.
Fall's name began to draw traction during the NCAA Tournament in his senior season at the University of Central Florida.
He earned a spot on the All-American Athletic Conference Third Team averaging 11.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game during the regular season. He carried UCF to the second round of the NCAA Tournament posting 13 points, 18 rebounds and five blocks in the opening round and nearly had his team take out the heavily favourited Duke Blue Devils led by Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett in the second round.
Fall entered and attended the 2019 NBA Draft but went undrafted. Shortly thereafter, the Boston Celtics gave the 7-footer the opportunity he deserved by adding him to their Summer League roster.
Tacko Fall's Summer League
Tacko Fall appeared in all six of the Celtics' Summer League games averaging 7.2 points (77% FG), 4.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 12.6 minutes per game.
It wasn't necessarily his box scores that were making headlines - his size and 8-foot-4 wingspan, his ability to dunk without jumping and the love he received from the fans made him an attractive and trending topic.
Just throw it within 100 feet of Tacko Fall 😅 pic.twitter.com/EZ4i8kThe0- NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) July 10, 2019
TACKO FALL REBOUND PUTBACK DUNK 🔥 pic.twitter.com/rpG8C5Pz50- NBA Summer League (@NBASummerLeague) July 12, 2019
Fans were lining up across the entire concourse of the arena to get a chance at a Tacko Fall autograph.
Here's the line if you wanna get an autograph from Tacko Fall. pic.twitter.com/nlYR9ogwy9- Nicole Yang (@nicolecyang) July 10, 2019
And then it was the viral photo of Fall and his teammate Carsen Edwards, who stands in at 6-foot-1.
On to the playoffs... @tackofall99 @Cboogie_3 pic.twitter.com/JNPr8OjbtB- NBA Summer League (@NBASummerLeague) July 12, 2019
Followed by a viral video of the 7-foot-6 centre looking massive on an amusement park ride.
"Look at Tacko's legs" 🤣- Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 17, 2019
(via @tackofall99) pic.twitter.com/XVkWt6IT2t
What's not to love about this guy? But does he actually have a chance at cracking the Celtics' roster?
Can Tacko Fall make the Celtics' roster?
Luckily for Fall, centre is without a doubt the Celtics' biggest roster weakness at the moment.
Over the past two seasons, Al Horford and Aron Baynes had taken the bulk of the minutes at centre for Boston. Horford left for the Philadelphia 76ers and Baynes was traded to the Phoenix Suns, leaving a massive vacancy at the 5.
Boston still has last year's first-round pick Robert Williams, who had some promising moments in his rookie campaign but is very much still a work-in-progress. They re-signed Daniel Theis and signed Enes Kanter, but those are the only three true centres on the roster.
Williams has the potential to be a great defender but is still extremely raw. Neither Theis nor Kanter are particularly known for their defence, where Fall uses his wingspan to his advantage as a shot blocker and rim protector.
With one roster spot up for grabs, you'd have to think the Celtics will at least give Fall an opportunity at earning that final spot - and that appears to be General Manager Danny Ainge's plan.
"We want to take his development very, very seriously. He's a high priority for us to try and really develop as a player," Ainge told the media following Kanter and Kemba Walker's introductory press conference.
The following day on the Boston radio station Toucher and Rich, Ainge furthered that notion, "We're trying to still get a contract done with Tacko. We haven't signed him yet. I really can't say much more about Tacko than we're just trying to get him in the fold. … Hopefully we can get that done but we'll see."
It seems the Celtics have every intention in giving the 23-year old an opportunity to make the final roster. Keep an eye on the situation in the coming days as teams continue to fill out their training camp rosters.
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