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Celtics 2020 Draft Recap: Danny Ainge Targets the Three Ball

I know a lot of fans wanted “fireworks” and wanted to see Danny Ainge make a huge blockbuster trade, but that was never going to happen. It’s nearly impossible to package lower picks to move up into the Top 5 in the NBA. The picks just are not nearly as valuable as they are in a league like the NFL because the rotations and the benches are so much smaller. And I know they were rumored to be in on guys like James Harden, but even if you wanted Harden you’d be silly to buy into that. The Celtics are always “in” on every big deal that they don’t actually do. Sure, a lot could change this afternoon depending on which way Gordon Hayward goes, but the Celtics did the only thing they really could do (without fundamentally changing the roster), stay pat and make their draft selections. So let’s take a look at who’s coming to Boston (or Maine) in a few weeks.

No. 14 – Aaron Nesmith, Forward 6’6″ Vanderbilt

Jay Bilas described Aaron Nesmith as the “best shooter in the draft” which is absolute porn for Celtics fans like me who have been begging for a 3 point threat on this team. Nesmith shot 52% from 3 last season to lead the nation. We do not need Marcus Smart jacking 10 threes a game with a guy like Nesmith on the team. This seems like a perfect fit considering the Celtics’ needs and their spot in the draft. A three point sniper who can provide much needed scoring off the bench (where the Celtics ranked 29th in the league in PPG and 28th in 3%) or provide spacing in run and gun lineups with Tatum, Brown, and Kemba.

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Although he did only play 14 games last season due to a foot injury…

You’re never going to get a can’t miss stud in the middle of the first round; the NBA and college basketball just aren’t deep enough. So to get a desperately needed three point threat who can be an immediate contributor is about as good as it gets at this spot. If he turns into anything more, then thats gravy at No. 14.

No. 26 – Payton Pritchard, Point Guard, 6’1″ Oregon

QUACK! QUACK! Now I could make a joke about the Celtics taking a 6’1″ white Point Guard from Oregon, but I won’t because thats too easy and I’m a blogger not an animal. Pritchard has some legit credentials as he was the Pac-12 Player of the Year while he lead the league in Points per Game (20.5), Assists per Game(5.5), 3-pointers, Offensive Rating, and he started all 105 games over 3 seasons. So he’s a pretty good player, but again take a look at the key stat; 41% from 3 last season. Danny was looking for scoring off the bench this year, not freak athlete projects like he loves to do.

And this may mean nothing to you, but the kid is tough, led the league in minutes played, won four state titles in high school and led Oregon to the Final Four. So he may be more grit and balls than elite talent, but as I’ve repeatedly said this team needs more grit off the bench.

“Boston selected competitive and they selected winner and a clutch performer…he can stretch it out and shoot it from deep, he’s strong when he puts the ball on the floor, he’s a competitive defender even though he’s not the greatest defender” – Jay Bilas

No. 30 – Traded to Memphis Grizzlies for Future Pick(s)

First let’s all agree that there was literally no room in this organization for another rookie. Theres just not enough roster spots in Boston or even Maine. I was fully expecting a draft and stash, but Danny trading out of a shitty pick for a future, unknown pick will always make me laugh.

Reports are that its not even another first round pick either.

Two second rounders! Thats twice as good as one first rounder!

It’s gotten to the point where Danny is like Bill Belichick just laundering these picks over the years so it’s nearly impossible to analyze what he actually got in return. So far it’s not great though. Danny traded last year’s No. 26 pick and Aron Baynes to the Suns for a 2020 first rounder, which was originally from the Bucks. Which he then flipped last night to the Grizzlies. So now Danny has essentially turned the 2019 No. 26 pick and Aron Baynes into two future second round picks. Now thats value.

To be honest he was probably just jealous of the Thunder now having the biggest war chest of future draft picks: a title that Ainge coveted for the last several years. After a wild ride as the king of future draft assets, he’s like Henry Hill at the end of Goodfellas. And now it’s all over.

No. 47 – Yam Madar, Point Guard, 6’1″, Israel

There’s the draft and stash! This kid is only 19 and will play at least another year over in Israel before the Celtics ultimately bring him in as reinforcements for the Red Claws. MassLive had a nice breakdown of Madar if you’re interested.

What did you think of the Celtics draft? Shoot us your complaints or wild predictions @the300sboston

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