Throughout the past week or so, rumors have came out reporting that the Celtics seem to be considering the idea of trading up in the draft. If they choose not make a move, there will still be good players available later in the 1st round.
Moe Harkless is one player that I am very intrigued by. Harkless, a 6’9 small forward from St. Johns could be an excellent backup to Paul Pierce, if the Celtics decide not to re-sign Jeff Green.
I really like Harkless’ potential, and I feel that he could be a good player if he gets good coaching and playing time.
Offensively, he has some growing to do. He can make shots from about 20 feet out consistently, but is not a great 3 point shooter. For a player who has the length like Harkless, shooting from the perimeter is usually one of their best strengths. If he can develop a nice outside shot, he’ll become a very lethal player on the court.
When he doesn’t have the ball, Harkless will run the floor in transition. Constantly I get frustrated when no one is running with Rondo on the fast break. Having a small forward who can run with him would make the whole team better, especially since Avery Bradley was thriving on fast break points when he was on the court with Rondo.
Harkless’ athleticism is another thing I like about him. For the past 2 or 3 years the Celtics haven’t had a player like that, and with an aging team, bringing in someone athletic maybe what the Celtics need.
On defense, Harkless uses his length to his advantage. He can block shots, tip passes away from the intended player, and on occasion gets some steals. His length alone is the reason why he can play good defense.
Rajon Rondo is probably the only player on the Celtics whose length is comparable to Harkless. Having a defense that consists of Rondo, Harkless, and Avery Bradley would be quite entertaining.
Ultimately, I like his defensive potential. Defense creates offense, and if the Celtics could force more turnovers and get rebounds, their offense will benefit immensely.
Moe Harkless’ Stats at St. Johns
15.3 ppg, 8.6 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks
If a 6’9 small forward is bringing down 8.6 rebounds a game, you essentially have a power forward. Rebounding is what killed the Celtics this year versus the Miami Heat. I can’t emphasize enough that drafting a rebounder in this year’s draft is a must for the Celtics.
Personally, I’d be thrilled if the Celtics draft Harkless. It all depends on their decision, but if they decide to keep their picks, there will still be good options later in the draft.