The offseason is under way and before you can even catch your breath after the Finals, we're looking towards the Draft.
Assuming they don't trade the pick, the Celtics will be selecting a player at the highest position since Gerald Green was picked at 18. We have the 19th pick in this year's draft and many believed that we'd be looking for a shooting guard to spell (or replace) Ray Allen. But that was before Perk's injury and rumors of Sheed's potential retirement.
So there's a good chance that the Celtics could be looking at big men in the draft. Guys like Cousins, Favors, and Monroe will all be long gone by our pick, but that doesn't mean there aren't guys to look at.
I went to my favorite site for draft info (Draft Express) and pulled a few names that they have projected in the late teens and early 20's. See the names and brief intros about each player after the break.
It is impossible to discuss Alabi as a prospect without mentioning his physical tools, since they’ve driven the majority of his success on the college level and account for much of his NBA intrigue. Enjoying ideal height and a big wingspan for a center at the next level, Alabi has continued to add weight to his frame, something he’ll need to continue to do in order to maximize his already impressive athletic profile. Couple his continued development both as a player and athlete with his already solid leaping ability and mobility, and Alabi has all the tools to be a high-level defensive player in the League.
The main intrigue around Orton’s potential as an NBA player revolves around his physical tools. Standing 6-10, with a wide, chiseled frame, an excellent wingspan and above average athleticism, Orton passes the look test and then some for what NBA teams seek from at a player at his position. He is fairly nimble, runs the court competently, can get off his feet, has a solid second bounce and very good hands on top of that. Simply put, there just aren’t many players around like him, which makes him somewhat of a commodity even in a draft as deep as this one is with big men.
The prevailing opinion amongst NBA scouts has always been that Aldrich is a likely role-player at the next level—a player who projects as a significant presence in the paint defensively and on the glass, but can’t be expected to score much more than what his guards are able to create for him around the basket.
Sanders’ main intrigue continues to revolve around his extremely rare physical tools, as he is an excellent athlete with a freakishly long wingspan. His frame continues to fill out, but there is still plenty more he can do to continue to add strength, which is a big key for his development. Running the floor is where Sanders might be able to contribute the most to an NBA team right off the bat. He has amazing speed in the open floor and is thus a terrific target for his guards to throw long outlet passes to in transition, regularly beating opponents down the court. Sanders is also an excellent finisher around the basket thanks to his length and quick leaping ability, ranking amongst the top players in the NCAA in this category according to Synergy Sports Technology.