When the Boston Celtics agreed to trade the No. 1 pick to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for the third pick in Thursday’s 2017 NBA Draft as well as a future first-rounder, it set forth a bunch of possibilities for Boston.
Will they draft a player with the third pick? Will they include the pick as part of a major blockbuster to land an All-Star talent? Will they continue to trade down and accrue more assets?
The latter of those options is looking like it could be a possibility.
Sources have apparently told Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald that the Celtics are very interested in North Carolina State point guard Dennis Smith Jr. while another source told Bulpett that the team may trade down again in order to gain another asset.
Since Smith’s name has not been mentioned among the top three potential picks in the draft, it seems as though Boston would be able to draft him even if they moved down a few more spots.
The explosive guard recently worked out for Boston and seemed to enjoy his time with the club.
“It went very well,” he said at a media session earlier this week. “I got to meet Danny Ainge, and that was great. Ironically, the Lakers and Celtics rivalry, (ESPN’s) ‘30 for 30’ had just come out, so I had a little background with Danny Ainge going into the meeting.”
He continued, “Danny Ainge was crazy back then, so I had some background info on him. In turn, our meeting went well. I knew something about him, he knew something about me.”
Smith’s respect wasn’t confined to just Ainge, either.
Of coach Brad Stevens, Smith said, “He knows basketball. He’s younger, so he’s easier to relate to. He’s a great guy, and he seems like he cares about his players.”
While the Celtics can use the third overall pick on him, he was also asked the question of whether or not he thinks Ainge would make a play for him on the night of the draft.
“I know he likes me. I’m a big fan of them. They’re fans of me, so we’ll see how that plays out,” Smith noted.
Averaging 18.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 6.2 assists over 34.8 minutes per game during his one-and-done season at NC State, Smith projects to be a combo guard with scoring ability. Here is the draft profile that the Celtics’ Twitter account put out on him:
As you can see, he certainly has the elite athleticism to play at the next level. The main question is how he’d fit on a roster that includes Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart, Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier, all of which played substantial roles at the two guard spots this past season.
But, having a wealth of talent would be a good problem for the Celtics to have.News Now - Sport News