Where Are Boston Celtics' Top Draft Picks from Past 5 Years Now?

Kyle Neubeck@@KyleNeubeckContributor IIAugust 7, 2013

Where Are Boston Celtics' Top Draft Picks from Past 5 Years Now?

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    Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce have walked off into a Brooklyn sunset - so what recent Boston Celtics draftees are still around to start the next era?

    It's interesting to think about as the Celtics begin a new chapter under Brad Stevens. Their previously strong core of veterans kept the team in contention for six seasons, so obtaining the next superstar was always going to be an uphill battle in the latter stages of the first round.

    Let's check in on players recently taken by the Celts.

J.R. Giddens

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    J.R. Giddens may have been a Celtic temporarily, but his college carpetbagging has continued at the professional level.

    Taken 30th in the 2008 first round, Giddens played at Kansas and later New Mexico due to off-court issues. It seemed like an ideal fit for the troubled player, with 2003 McDonald's All-American Game teammates Kendrick Perkins and Leon Powe already on the roster.

    Unfortunately for Giddens, he was nothing more than the celebratory candle on the 2008 Celtics championship cake.

    Appearing in just 53 games over one-and-a-half seasons for Boston, Giddens was traded to the New York Knicks to finish out his rookie contract.

    Since leaving the league after the 2009-10 season, Giddens has traveled from Poland to Greece to Italy, playing most recently in 2013 with Basket Brescia Leonessa in the Italian Legadue.

Avery Bradley

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    Despite having to endure Rick Barnes' coaching at Texas, Avery Bradley has flashed a handful of useful skills since he was drafted in 2010.

    Fans were concerned that Danny Ainge selected a 6'3" guard with 55 million dollar man Rajon Rondo already in place, but Bradley's wingspan has allowed him to fill in at both guard positions during his time in Boston. 

    This is most evident on the defensive end. Bradley was awarded a second-team All-Defense selection in 2012-13 for his ability to lock down opposing players and jump into passing lanes, preventing easy buckets.

    After losing defensive genius Kevin Garnett via trade, Bradley's contributions will be more important than ever to the Celtics going forward.


MarShon Brooks

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    Like Jeff Green before him, MarShon Brooks was traded by the Boston Celtics on draft night only to return at a later date.

    Brooks was fairly productive during his rookie year with the Brooklyn (then New Jersey) Nets, putting up 12.6 points and 3.6 rebounds, but his minutes were cut last season as a result of a veteran talent infusion.

    Stuck behind guards like Joe Johnson and Deron Williams, Brooks was more efficient in a smaller, off-the-bench role for the Nets in 2012-13. Brooklyn's quest to get better immediately resulted in Brooks being sent to the Celtics this offseason as part of the package for Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.

    Reunited with the team that selected him in 2011, Brooks figures to be part of the guard rotation along with Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley. 


Jared Sullinger

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    Questions about his back haunted Jared Sullinger prior to the 2012 draft, and they don't appear to be stopping anytime soon.

    Sullinger was an injection of offensive rebounding for a Boston Celtics team that desperately needed it last season. Ultra-efficient as a reserve, his per-36 averages of 10.9 points and 10.7 rebounds hinted at future success as more playing time became available.

    But before he could take on a heavier workload, Sullinger was lost for the season in February after undergoing back surgery.

    It would be a shame if the two-time All-American's career was derailed by an issue he can't control, so here's hoping for a clean bill of health moving forward.

Fab Melo

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    Fab Melo has yet to make much of an impact for the Boston Celtics, but his physical gifts are impossible to ignore.

    Standing seven feet tall with a standing-reach of 9'2", Melo's giant features were on display almost exclusively for the D-League's Maine Red Claws last season.

    It was there he established his first claim to fame, putting up a triple-double of 15 points, 16 rebounds and a D-League record 14 blocks. The response to this feat praised the achievement and progression while still keeping things in perspective.

    Melo has the athleticism to help Boston, if for nothing more than a few minutes per game, and could be a cheap alternative to help ease the rebounding and defensive woes that have plagued the Celtics this season. He still has a ton to learn, but he'll continue to receive attention if he can consistently make an impact on the glass and around the rim like he did on Saturday night.

    Melo did just that in short spells for the Celtics, averaging just six minutes over six games on the season. Time, development, and open slots on the roster should lead to an expanded role for him this year.