After Celtics' power forward Kevin Garnett went down with a calf injury a few weeks ago, Celtics' coach Doc Rivers didn't hesitate to bring former Notre Dame star Luke Harangody into his rotation.
The 23 year old forward who was drafted 52nd overall in the 2010 draft has averaged only 1 point and 2.6 rebounds in 13.4 minutes per game.
Like most rookies Harangody has had to accept that he is no longer the go-to-guy on his team and at most plays a peripheral role as a role player/backup. At Notre Dame he was the only men's player to average 20 points and 10 rebounds per conference game in the Big East Conference over a career. Harangody averaged 21.8 points per game in college and 9.1 rebounds over a four year career.
Harangody was an award winning college player who came into the season as the team's fifth option up front behind Shaquille and Jermaine O'Neal, Glen Davis and Semih Erden. Harangody has moved above Erden in the rotation but the imminent return of Kendrick Perkins from a serious knee injury will move him back down another rung on the Celtics' ladder.
Harangody may not get many opportunities to make a mark on the season once Perkins returns as he was limited to 8 minutes in last night's game against the Orlando Magic as Garnett returned to the team. He scored 3 points and had 1 rebound but looked outmatched on the floor. Dwight Howard and Brandon Bass used their size against Harangody on offense while he could not get to the rim on offense. Offensively Harangody is a talented shooter who can put up big numbers when given the chance as he did against the Toronto Raptors on the 7th of January notching a career high 17 points and 11 rebounds.
The 17 time NBA Champion Celtics may not have any need for Harangody this season but the age of their roster coupled with the youth of Harangody will afford him many opportunities over the coming years.
Just not this year.