The NBA Draft is just over a week away, which means NBA Draftmas is back. Each day, The Game Haus will review a team’s past season, their team needs and targets. Draftmas continues today with the Boston Celtics 2018 NBA Draft Profile.
Last year’s Boston Celtics, like few other teams, had multiple seasons within their regular and post-season success. First, Boston landed coveted free agent and Butler University alumni, Gordon Hayward. While Hayward wasn’t the highest profile free agent the past few years, adding a 20 point per game scorer at the forward position didn’t hurt.
Second, the Celtics acquired the Cavaliers’ superstar point guard, Kyrie Irving. Not only were they objectively strengthening their team, but simultaneously weakening the roster of their biggest Eastern Conference rival. Third, Boston’s prized free agent suffered a gruesome leg injury in the first quarter of their season opener. If there was a bright side to the timing of Hayward’s injury, it allowed and forced, Jayson Tatum to be more involved as a contributor.
From there, everything seemed to work itself out, until Kyrie Irving had season-ending surgery to fix a nagging injury. And just when all hope seemed lost, Brad Stevens and the young guns led this team to an Eastern Conference Finals game seven at home. While they may not have been enough to topple LeBron James and the Cavaliers, there isn’t a franchise with a brighter future than the Boston Celtics.
Picks and Needs
The Boston Celtics have one pick in the upcoming draft.
First round: No. 27
It’s hard to assign a definitive need to this team. With great high-end talent, promising youth and above average role players, the Celtics don’t appear to have an immediate need. Given their history of developing players, the most ideal selection would be to replace a productive, but aging player at the 27th pick.
Targets and Thoughts
Pick No. 27: Chandler Hutchinson, Forward, Boise State
While Al Horford would be the prime candidate to replace with a developmental player at the 27th pick; there aren’t many center prospects worthy of selection at this point. If a capable center prospect falls to the Celtics, then that would be the ideal selection.
A potential center slide aside, Chandler Hutchinson would be a good selection. Hutchinson won’t be asked to contribute much, but could still have an impact in his rookie season. He’s an incredibly long forward at 6’7″ with a 7’1″ wingspan. Unlike some prospects, Hutchinson is capable of being a complete player, one that isn’t an offensive or defensive liability. Offensively, he’s productive as a spot up shooter and as a driver to the basket. Defensively, Hutchinson is hard to beat cleanly given his athletic ability and length. He can also contribute as a capable rebounder.
On the other hand, his ceiling isn’t incredibly high. He struggles to create his own shot, scores in streaks as opposed to consistently throughout a game, and has to gain weight. Hutchinson would benefit tremendously from the schooling of Brad Stevens (who wouldn’t?), and time to develop his game within the incredible Celtics’ system.
Featured Image Courtesy of; NBA.com
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