by Alex Poletti
One of the biggest sensations of 2019’s NBA Summer League so far has been the 7’6 undrafted Tacko Fall, who has been lighting the world on fire with the Boston Celtics. Despite gaining popularity and performing admirably in Las Vegas, analysts for The Second String feel that Tacko Fall may burn out if he makes the regular season roster, citing his potential to become Tacko Winter.
“Fall has shown that he has great upside and a potential future in the NBA, but you can never be sure about guys like this,” analyst Rob Carey says. “If we look at recent trends and read enough George R.R. Martin, it’s pretty clear that Winter is coming. And Fall cedes to winter pretty easily.”
In his senior season at UCF, Fall posted 11.1 points and 7.6 total rebounds per game. With a definite height advantage over the rest of the NBA, it would seem that Fall’s draft stock was going up; however, he went undrafted in 2019, signing an Exhibit 10 Contract with Boston a day later.
“Projectability was a big reason Fall wasn’t taken,” Carey theorizes. “Even his height was of concern. You see, one season after Fall, winter comes along and everything shrinks a bit. Leaves are completely off of trees and many plants die completely. If that’s what teams are to expect of Tacko after one season, it makes sense that they would stay away.”
Looking forward, however, the Senegal native may be on the upswing. Instead of using a two-season projection, a team of statisticians for The Second String used a more advanced five-season model and found astonishing results.
“It’s true that next season would be rough, but we can see a complete revival in season three,” resident engineer for The Second String Barney Hackl says. “By that point, he could be blossoming into Tacko Spring. The season after, Tacko Summer would really bring the heat.”
Hackl was quick to qualify his work, though. While the math from the projection checks out, there are many variables that may affect the accuracy of his findings.
“These formulas are legit, and the science of the seasons definitely backs it up,” Hackl continues. “So ceteris paribus, Fall has two years of super-stardom to come. But when we consider other factors, the math becomes a lot muddier. For instance, what if he becomes Burrito Fall out of nowhere? Or Enchilada Fall? If the Celtics run out of corn tortillas, Enchilada Fall may become a real possibility. Or perhaps after some coaching, the center could forego tortillas altogether and become Fajita Fall. It’s too complex to predict.”