Three Second Round NBA Draft Prospects Worth the Celtics Acquiring a Pick For

Randolph CharlotinAnalyst IIJune 23, 2014

Three Second Round NBA Draft Prospects Worth the Celtics Acquiring a Pick For

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    Stephan Savoia/Associated Press

    Earlier this year, Boston Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, “…This June there could be some fireworks,” for the Celtics.

    That suggests he expects Boston Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge to make some big moves on draft night.

    If Ainge does pull off a big deal or two, it could cost Boston both the sixth and 17th draft picks, as well as a future selection or two. If Ainge deals his first round picks, that doesn’t mean that Trader Dan closes up shop for the night.

    In the 2007 trade that cost Boston the fifth overall pick (Jeff Green), Delonte West and Wally Szczerbiak for Ray Allen, Ainge had the Seattle Supersonics select Glen Davis for Boston with the 35th pick.

    There’s speculation that the Celtics want to get into the second round. In what is considered one of the deepest drafts in years, there will be some good players available.

    So who will be this year’s Davis? Or is there an E’Twaun Moore (55th, 2011) to be found? Can Ainge talk a team into drafting the next Leon Powe (49th, 2006) for him again?

    With seven teams holding multiple second round picks in this year’s draft (think the Philadelphia 76ers will use all five second round picks?), the opportunity is there for Ainge to get his hands on at least one second round selection.

    Seven teams own 19 second round picks right now; that will change on draft night. If the Celtics can acquire a second round selection or two, here are three player recommendations:

DeAndre Daniels, SF, UConn

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    13.1 pts, 6.0 reb, 0.4 ast, 20.0 PER

    UConn point guard Shabazz Napier clearly was the Huskies’ best player, but DeAndre Daniels was a solid second option last season. Daniels finished his junior season with the Huskies second in scoring, second in blocked shots (1.4 per game) and led the team in rebounds.

    Daniels is a versatile scorer that thrives in the open floor. His lean physique is built for running up and down the court. But give Daniels enough space and he’ll make defenders pay. He shot .417 from three-point range in 2013-14 on 120 attempts, so the percentage isn’t a fluke.

    Seven times Daniels scored at least 20 points with a season high 31 points against Temple. As a surprisingly good defensive rebounder, Daniels had five double-doubles.

    And while Daniels played poorly in the NCAA Final, he played his best basketball during tournament time as he scored in double figures in all but one game and posted three of his five double-doubles during the conference and NCAA tournaments.

    While the body of work is solid, Daniels’ body needs work. His length is great (6’8” with a 7’2” wingspan), but his frame carries a mere 196 pounds. Daniels is bound to be bullied by stronger players.

    His 32” vertical is another disappointment. Daniels’ length makes up for some of his lack of explosiveness but not all of it.

    What matters most about Daniels is he can score. The ability to put the ball through the hoop, particularly from beyond the arc, would be a boost to Boston’s mediocre bench scoring that was 16th in the NBA.

    NBA Comparison: Brent Barry, retired

     

Mitch McGary, C, Michigan

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    9.5 pts, 8.3 reb, 1.5 ast, 26.2 PER

    With Boston thinnest at center, it only makes sense to add depth to the position. And while Mitch McGary isn’t the rim protector that the Celtics need, he’s an intelligent player that goes all out at both ends of the court.

    McGary is a skilled and mobile a big man. What he lacks athletically he makes up for it mentally.

    McGary just knows how to play the game. On defense he won’t be out of position, knows when to help, what his rotations are and will put his body on the line to draw charges. He also does a solid job defending the pick-and-roll, able to hedge on screens and recover.

    Offensively McGary’s cerebral approach will help the offense flow. He sets solid picks for teammates, knows when to cut to the basket for easy buckets, sees the floor well and makes great passes.

    It’s been more than a year since McGary played for Michigan in the NCAA Tournament, but his contributions to the Wolverines’ run to the NCAA Final against Louisville in 2013 shouldn’t be forgotten.

    Though Trey Burke was the man for Michigan, McGary was the primary reason the Wolverines beat Syracuse in the national semifinals. He picked the famed Orangemen zone apart from the free throw line and finished the game with 10 points, 12 rebounds and a team-leading six assists.

    Head coach Brad Stevens would love a heady player like McGary, but Stevens would have to accept McGary’s limitations. McGary won’t be the paint presence that Boston sorely needs. He would be another ground-based big man that won’t scare opponents from attacking the rim, despite his constant all-out effort.

    McGary might get passed on because he lacks the explosiveness and athleticism. But an advanced basketball IQ in a young player is hard to find.

    NBA Comparison: Nick Collison, Oklahoma City Thunder

Patric Young, C, Florida

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    11.0 pts, 6.2 reb, 0.8 ast, 22.1 PER

    The only thing keeping Patric Young from being a real life action figure is he lacks the kung-fu grip. Young is certainly built like one with his sculpted physique that could come in WWE packaging.

    Being built like Roadblock from "G.I. Joe" doesn’t make Young worthy of a second round pick. It’s Young’s defense, which tells opponents to “enter the lane at your own risk,” that makes Young appealing.

    Young can be a paint presence for Boston. He’s a full-sized big man standing 6’10” (in shoes) with an almost 7’2” wingspan on a 247-pound frame. Young is built ready for low post combat on day one.

    To complete the package, Young is an excellent athlete with a 37” vertical to compliment his 8’7.5” standing reach.

    Young is a complete defender, able to play man, zone and defend the pick-and-roll. The best part about Young’s defensive prowess is his desire. He doesn’t hesitate to put his body on the line or dive for loose balls.

    Young averaged just 1.1 blocks per game, but he certainly altered his share. Young’s effect is reflected in his 91.5 defensive rating, according to Sports-Reference.com.

    Another disappointing statistic is Young’s 6.2 rebounds per game (hence the absence of a kung-fu grip). As physically gifted Young is, he should be better on the boards.

    Even worse is his offense. Young offers very on the offensive end, save for setting picks and short jump hooks with either hand. Otherwise he’s practically useless beyond five feet from the rim. Young must get his points off alley-oops and offensive put backs.

    If Young can effectively patrol the paint, his lack of offense can be forgiven. A brick house on defense, a brick layer on offense.

    Young isn’t everything, but his defense alone should be enough to have his name called.

    NBA Comparison: Kendrick Perkins, Oklahoma City Thunder

    Questions? Comments? Send to randolphc82@comcast.net.