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Bulpett: Fortson hopes to lift C's
Bulpett urges Celts fans to "recalibrate your biceps gauge" if you
thought VP was a big player. ``Goodness,'' says Paul Pierce.
``(Fortson's) a terror out there. He's probably the MVP of camp. He gets
every rebound, and you can't strip the ball away from him..."
Anyone for trading Fortson back to Denver for Mercer? :-)
p.s. Go Bret Saberhagen! Go Red Sox team!
Fortson hopes to lift C's
Copyright Bos Herald
by Steve Bulpett
Monday, October 11, 1999
Near the end of Celtics media day last Monday, team photographer Steve
Lipofsky had Danny Fortson and Vitaly Potapenko hold 40-pound dumbbells
for your basic tough guy shot.
``Forget the weights,'' said onlooker Paul Pierce. ``Give them some ammo
for those arms. Those guns need ammo.''
If you saw Potapenko last year and thought him large, you will have to
recalibrate your biceps gauge when you get a load of his new frontcourt
``Do you see those arms?'' said Eric Williams, a former teammate of
Fortson's in Denver. ``That's Fortson - strong presence on the inside,
intimidator. I hit people and run behind Danny. That's the bottom line
The Celtics are getting hip.
``He's a strong dude,'' said Potapenko. ``Just for his height, he's the
strongest. I mean, you can take Shaquille O'Neal, he's just big. But
Danny is muscle.''
``Goodness,'' said Pierce. ``He's a terror out there. He's probably the
MVP of camp. He gets every rebound, and you can't strip the ball away
from him. He's going to be a great addition for us. I didn't think
anybody was as strong as Vitaly, but Danny's in here moving him around.
They're banging. It's like a war down there when they match up.''
It appears as well that Fortson is having an effect on even the Celtics
he doesn't hit.
``Mr. Fortson, oh, man,'' said Walter McCarty with a smile. ``Large
individual. He's just a great guy, first of all. He has a great
attitude. I've been following him since he was (in college) at
Cincinnati. He was just down the road from us (at Kentucky). I know his
game has grown a whole lot. He's just a tough guy who's going to help us
out tremendously. I mean, we love him. He's probably one of the hardest
workers from beginning to end in practice. I think he's going to
surprise a lot of people this year.''
He has already done that to his coach.
``This Danny Fortson's been a wonderful surprise,'' said Rick Pitino.
``I think Antoine (Walker) is going to have to suffer a little bit
because he's got to go against him all the time. He's very similar to
(the Nets') Jayson Williams - he's got a bigger body - but in terms of
the way he offensive rebounds. He's so physical, and it's contagious.
Offensive rebounding is contagious.''
Pitino got a pleasant surprise when Fortson got measured. The power
forward was leaving his physical when he encountered the coach on a
``How tall did they have you?'' Pitino asked.
Fortson replied he was 6-foot-7 barefoot, making him more than 6-8 with
sneakers, taller than his program height (6-7).
``That's the way it's been ever since college,'' said Fortson after
getting through the first week of camp.
``We always measured barefoot, but pretty much everybody else measured
with your sneakers on. I did grow since my freshman year in college, but
coach (Bob) Huggins is a firm believer in faking out the other team as
far as height was concerned. When the team you're playing comes on the
court, they see you're taller than what you're listed as. I don't know
why he does it, but that's what he does.
``When you get out there on the floor, everybody's pretty much the same
height. It just depends on what you do with what you have.''
Fortson spent the offseason adding to what he has, doing extra weight
and conditioning work.
``I worked hard this summer,'' he said. ``I knew I was coming here.''