If you’ve watched any of Las Vegas Summer League so far you’ve surely noticed Tacko Fall. The center out of UCF and playing for the Boston Celtics stands at a huge 7’7, and has become a sensation in Vegas, with fans marveling at his gigantic size as he towers over other big men.
Height is the first thing you notice about Fall, because even sharing the floor with some of the tallest people on earth, he makes them look minuscule by comparison. He can touch the rim without jumping and regularly throws down dunks where he would barely clear a phone book with his leap. Fall’s height is, undoubtedly, a major reason why he is an NBA prospect.
But height is only part of Fall’s story and appeal as a player. Throughout this entire process it’s been somewhat irritating to watch Fall become a sideshow, and it’s hard to escape the feeling that Fall is just turning into a mascot. Here’s a young player with legitimate NBA skills, but rather than much discussion about how he could fit in the NBA, he’s mostly become a social media meme. There’s no expectation for serious basketball analysis at summer league, but it would be nice to see Fall get acknowledged beyond his height.
His height is, ironically, the low-hanging fruit. It’s unfortunate that many can’t get past that, especially when you consider that Fall himself has an interesting backstory beyond just being an incredibly tall person that plays basketball.