Feb 8, 2014; Chestnut Hill, MA, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward Jabari Parker (1) dunks the ball against the Boston College Eagles during the second half at Silvio O. Conte Forum. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Sizing Up The Prospects – Who Would Be The Best Fit For The Boston Celtics?

Jun 27, 2013; Brooklyn, NY, USA; A general view as NBA commissioner David Stern (right) , deputy commissioner Adam Silver (left) and former NBA player Hakeem Olajuwon speak on stage after the first round of the 2013 NBA Draft at the Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Well Hardwood Houdini readers, we are nearly halfway through the month of February, and while players on the Boston Celtics have gone on the record as saying they would like to use this month to get back in the playoff race, the cold hard fact is that Boston currently sits in the 11th spot in the Eastern Conference, four games behind the 8th-place Charlotte Bobcats.  Four games may not sound like much, but the Celtics are not the only team trying to scrap and claw their way up the ladder.  The Bobcats would like to make the playoffs for once, I bet, while Detroit and the New York Knicks are desperately trying to salvage their seasons.

Long story short, the Boston Celtics would be hard pressed to sneak into the playoffs at the 8 spot, and would only wind up being destroyed in the first round by either the Indiana Pacers or the Miami Heat.

When it comes to the 2014 NBA Draft, however, the Celtics are in much better shape.  Currently, they are the 8th-worst team in the NBA, and in with a pool of prospects as deep as the Atlantic Ocean this year, that’s not a bad place to be.  If we’re lucky, the Celtics will remain firmly in the top ten of the draft, which raises the question, which top ten prospect would best fit this Celtics roster?

Let’s assume for now that the latest rumor circulating the league regarding the Boston Celtics – namely, that the team plans to build around Rajon Rondo, Jeff Green, and Jared Sullinger – is true  It also stands to reason that Phil Pressey and Kelly Olynyk fit into the Celtics’ (near) future plans, as well, as they are both having solid rookie seasons.  Under this scenario, the Celtics will find themselves incredibly weak at the shooting guard and center positions heading into the draft.  Does this make shooting guards Dante Exum (Australia) and Gary Harris (Michigan State) the Celtics’ first two choices?   Or would the Celtics, who have already tried to negotiate a deal for Houston’s Omer Asik, look to draft Joel Embiid (Kansas) or Willie Cauley-Stein (Kentucky) to anchor their defense down the middle?

Another scenario that is easy to envision is that the Celtics trade Jeff Green, leaving them vulnerable at the small forward position, making a guy who can play the 3 Boston’s number one priority.  Come to think of it, this draft is so loaded with good forwards – Andrew Wiggins (Kansas), Jabari Parker (Duke), Julius Randle (Kentucky), Aaron Gordon (Arizona) – would Boston be able to pass up one of these guys if he was still available?

Any trades the Celtics make over the next week and a half will clearly affect their draft needs, but for now I ask you, which position should the Boston Celtics be looking at the most as they prepare for the 2014 NBA Draft?

Which position do you think the Boston Celtics need the most help at as they prepare for the NBA Draft?

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Tags: Boston Celtics

  • Paul Sherman

    They take the best player available!!! I think really high picks need to be used on forwards or a center. If the Celtics get a top 4 pick that is the way they should go. I hope they can get one of the forwards even if they need to move up a couple of slots. They can use some of the picks or a player to do it. I really want them to build younger this time so they can have a 10 yr run. I’m sure they will have cap room for the summer of 2015 where they can add FA to fill needs. Starting this build with a Parker or Wiggins will give them a 19 or 20 yr old to start that process. I would like to resemble the Thunder. They are o young team with tons of talent so a couple yrs in the lottery and then 2015 FA class along with a couple of young guys we have now gives us a shot at a talented young team. This rebuild process is nearly impossible to do, so I believe the younger the team, the better off we will be long term.

  • Paul Sherman

    I think I should clarify my thoughts on who to take early. If a great point guard like Chris Paul is there then I get that but taking a shooting guard wouldn’t be my choice. Honestly in most cases even a point guard isn’t worth being taken that high. I think you can find guards later and trading down would be my preference. The NBA Draft is tough and why teams are bad for so long. A top 5 pick should translate into your franchise guy and it doesn’t. Look at Cleveland they took Irving and so many other lottery guys and they are going back. Irving doesn’t even want to stay anymore so how did taking a point guard help them? Especially a scoring PG, who comes to a bad team that needs scoring and most likely don’t have many guys to dump the ball to so he ends up being a ball hog. Then we it comes time you need that assist PG to run the team you end up with problems.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Hi, Paul! I agree: there are no points guards or shooting guards in college basketball today that are absolute must-drafts along the lines of a Chris Paul or Kobe Bryant. The crop of forwards is strong, but Boston really could use a center, too, so I’m interested to see – do they trade Green and Bass and stock up at the forward position? Especially if they manage to acquire Asik? A top 5 pick should would get me pumped about next season!

      • Paul Sherman

        IDK if the Asik thing will happen? I think with him here we need one of the Forwards. I might then keep Rondo. You at that point would compete for the playoffs. I think this rebuild needs to be young. The last one really was too old. I prefer the Thunder build. It is too hard to do and you don’t want to do it every five yrs. So we need to go young. That way the team can grow together and you can monitor the roster to add rebuild pieces in stages down the road. That is kind of what the Spurs have done and what Lakers did in past. Thinking like that I am Ok with them in Lottery the next couple of years. The great thing about doing this is you get that 2015 FA class but then you get the Nets 1st rd picks in 2016 and 2017 when they will be horrible. The picks this year and next will help to move in Draft. I’m excited to watch this unfold. It will be harder if this upcoming pick doesn’t net one of the big 4.

        • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

          I don’t think the Asik deal is going to come about, but the Celtics sure were big on him earlier this year. Asik has been playing better for Houston, but does that make him someone the Rockets will want to keep, or does it simply make him easier to sell? Bass wasn’t enough to get Asik, so does that mean the Cs need to give up Green or Bradley AND Bass? Seems like a lot for Asik. At this point, I’m just praying they keep Rondo and Bradley (and obviously Sully, who seems to be safe) and land a top 5!