NBA personnel said this week Vucevic will probably be drafted somewhere between the No. 9 and No. 17 picks, which makes it seem silly there were doubts he would turn pro a few months ago. "He's moved up drastically during his workouts," said an NBA general manager who did not wish to be identified. "A lot of teams like him now." The Knicks are believed to be highly interested, along with the Houston Rockets. The Boston Celtics are even interested in trading up in order to select Vucevic, according to sources.
Update: Some more buzz about the C's via Andy Katz:
Boston brought back Marquette's Jimmy Butler for a second workout within a week, putting Butler in the mix at No. 25. The Celtics are also considering Jeremy Tyler, who played in Israel and Japan recently, among other places. Cleveland State's Norris Cole has also been tabbed as a favorite among some circles in the organization. Cole has interest in teams like Sacramento if the Kings don't get a point guard in the lottery.
A little about Nicola after the break.
Perhaps the most promising player in this second tier is Nikola Vucevic, who averaged a solid 17.1-point, 10.3-rebound double-double at the University of Southern California. The native of Montenegro has had three years of exposure to the Pac-10, giving him an enormous advantage over other European big men attempting to make a transition to the NBA. And like Marc Gasol, the Grizzlies center who played his high school basketball in Memphis while living with his older brother, Pau, Vucevic is equipped to play inside. He’s 6-foot-10 with a 260-pound frame that he’s not averse to using. It remains to be seen if he has Marc Gasol’s toughness and heart.