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Grading The C’s Draft

 

Well, it’s been nearly 24 hours, you know what that means! Time to stamp a grade on the Celtics 2010 Draft Class! The pundits have been kind so far with the lowest grade I’ve seen thus far being a B- from Chris Mannix at SI. Chad Ford and Kelly Dwyer chipped in respectively with an A- and A for The Green Team so the reaction overall has been pretty positive.

Personally, I was pretty surprised with the first round selection initially. Partially because I didn’t expect Avery Bradley to be on the board that late in the round, and mostly because I expected the C’s, like most fans, to go big. After a very long run on power forwards/centers though in the teens (Cole Aldrich, Patrick Patterson, Ed Davis, Larry Sanders, Kevin Seraphin) it ended up being the very shallow point guard crop being the group to fall to the Cs.

Knowing that the C’s would be reaching drafting any big man left at 19, it made sense for Danny Ainge to go the best player available route. This team had a plethora of needs entering this draft and even though a backup point guard, may have been number 2 or 3 on the list, it still had to be filled at one point or another.

The Celtics haven’t had a true backup point guard for the past three years, and now if Avery Bradley lives up to his potential (top ranked high schooler last year by ESPNU) the Celtics PG position could be settled for the next four years. That is an appealing thought. 

The quick book on Bradley:

-Great defender
-Can play both guard positions (though undersized at 6-3 for SG)
-Strong spot up shooter from mid-range
-Poor free throw shooter (He’ll fit right in here!)
-Hard worker
-Struggles at team to finish around basket/create for teammates
-Takes some ill-advised shots
-Tremendous speed and has terrific athleticism
-Needs to learn PG position

My buddy Corey may have described him best, texting me “He’s TA with good handle.” Plus a jumper.

So to everyone who is upset with Ainge for overlooking the need for a backup bigs and swingmen, (which included myself at first) I say relax. There are several different avenues from which Danny can improve this team heading into free agency, including one overlooked thus far. (trading Rasheed for a player on a team looking for cap relief, who in turns buys Sheed out)

The team knows its problems and likely has countless contingency plans based on how the Ray Allen/Paul Pierce/Doc Rivers situations shake out in the next week. Bradley was the best player available at 19 and only being 19 years old, provides the ability to potentially help now, while also having the most upside out of anyone left on the board.

Ainge has been hit (Delonte West, Tony Allen, Rajon Rondo) and miss (Marcus Banks, Gabe Pruitt) drafting guards in the past. Bradley fills a need on this team though, so it’s tough to argue with the logic.

As for Luke Harangody, all I will say is that guy will sell a lot of jerseys for this team around Boston if he makes this team. With the high number of roster spots available and his nose for rebounding, I expect that to happen. Sorry Scal, Danny found a replacement.We will always remember you regardless.

Grade: B+

Now it’s your turn. How do you grade this draft? Is the Bradley pick a risk to you? Should Ainge have made a trade? It’s time to share your thoughts on one of the few ways Ainge could improve this team before hopefully gearing up for a 2010-11 NBA Title run.

  • Jay P

    A-

    Bradley was absolutely the best player available there. They liked him from the start, and he had a great workout with the team. Danny just never expected him to be available at 19 (a big part of the reason he wanted out of the draft I bet, as he wasn’t really excited about anyone else he did expect to be available at 19.)

    Luke… eh. We’ll see. I’m biased, cause I want to see that end of bench big man spot go to Tony Gaffney so I kinda hope the guy doesn’t make it. But whatever, what are the chances anyone drafted at 52 even makes the team, never mind getting any time. That rarely happens, Glen Davis being a rare exception obviously.

  • Ian

    Should have drafted Jordan Crawford from Xavier….pretty ridiculous we let the next star in the NBA get away from us.

    Trust me…this kid will be good….

  • http://celticshub.com Brendan Jackson

    Jordan Crawford’s ceiling is Jamal Crawford. Good, but early second round pick good.

  • mike

    thought danny should have moved up/paid for the big kid from florida state in the second…2 picks away…

    i think we should reserve judgement until sheed’s contract is dealt…could net a nice piece or 2….

  • mike

    @jay p

    if i recall baby was pick 35 or so….quite a difference from 52, BUT….they say rebounding is a skill that translates from college, so i’ll reserve judgement until a possible sheed deal…

  • Jay P

    Mike, I agree with you. But Alabi is no shoe in, I assure you of that.

    He’s got size, so on that basis alone he has more potential. But size alone isn’t enough, just ask Patrick O’Bryant.

    Bottom line is was little chance anyone they take with that second pick was going to do anything at all.

    Far as Crawford… better immediate impact, but no upside. Bradley was the best player available, no question in my mind Danny did the right thing.

  • Jrmz

    Ainge did what he could with what he got. Therefore this is a B+ for me too although I wonder what Ainge will do to solve our lack of big men problem now.

  • Jay P

    @mike

    All the more reason it proves my point. Even at 35, and impact player in the second round is rare.

    So at 52… all the worse.

  • Brett

    Depends on how you look at it. Did we get great value at our picks? Based on expert remarks (I don’t know the players, so I will defer) I would give them an A- due to Bradley’s upside if we base the grade on getting value at your selections. Although he does not fill the biggest need, he does fit the general need – we need more young talent. And if Rondo ever gets hurt, we might realize the prudence of the move.

    On the other hand, I am deeply disappointed that we did not acquire/purchase an additional pick. For $ 3 million or less we could have also picked up a big man – project or otherwise – in the middle to late first round.

    So from the standpoint of doing everything possible to improve your team given the resources at your disposal, I would give the organization a C+/B- for this draft. We have many spots to fill. Better to take a flier on a young player than to pay a vet to warm the bench.

  • mike

    @jay p
    agree, 2nd round is a crap shoot, just wanted to note baby was basically a fringe first rounder….

    from what i read alabi is big and athletic…worth a flier on…i’d like to see samhan get a shot…nice game downlow…

  • Josh A

    I don’t think you guys understand how good of a player he could possibly be. Look at the descriptions of him online. Great player. We need another scorer/ point guard. PERFECT!

  • mike

    anybody have some possibles for a spot for sheed…i’d like to see a 2-1 if possible….before you suggest, the salaries we take back needs to total 6-7 million…

  • Perry

    Undersized, but a 6′ 7″ wingspan. Rondo better improve his FT% for this defensive combination of him and Bradley to work.

  • mike

    @josh A

    i think most of us realize a player like bradley would be a perfect alternative to rondo…think of kobe leaving him open all through the finals….he’s a nice change of pace from rondo….

  • steve

    I’m warming up to the Bradley pick. I’d like to see him come in and back up both Rondo and Ray and then become the starting 2 guard if all goes well. I know he’s small but with those arms and hops he just has to avoid getting posted up. Luckily that seems to be a lost art in the NBA. Rondo is small against some PG’s but he seems to hold his own as first team all defense. Maybe Luke will be this years Dejuan Blair. I do know he’s hard working and has his head on right and that’s something a lot of draft picks lack. Last thought is I think I’d rather draft guards and sign the bigs. They are such a crap shoot out of college and I think numbers would show guards that are drafted high pan out a lot more often then the big guys do. Sign one athletic big that can run and rebound and who knows what happens.

  • mike

    @ steve

    hard to ignore 21 and 9 boards per….totally agree…worth taking a look at

  • Idaho

    You are all missing the point!!!! This may give us a reason to cut TA!!! A++++++++++

  • http://celticshub idunno

    Bradley is NOT a point guard! I don’t want a guy with this much talent to play behind rondo for his entire Celtics tenure. He can play SG, let him play PG for a while, But ideally he will be our starting SG in the future. Hes listed everywhere as a SG so unless the Celtics got their S’s and Ps mixed up I dont see why the goal would be to make him a back up pg.

  • Jeff

    @ Idaho

    Are you nutts? TA just held Bryant to 25% from the field in the Finals! If he leaves and gets an over zealous contract from someone, then that’s his deal but if he wants to come back for 2-3 years at $3 mil as the one true Kobe stopper in the NBA, I’m for that. The guy can shut down just about any wing in the game right now. KEEP TA!

    @ Mike

    The only one that really jumps as an option is Miami for Beasley and sign and trade of O’Neal.

    Sheed’s deal is worth $6.3 and Beasley is $4.6. The CBA allows for a transfer of up to 125% of the salary being traded plus $100,000. So for Sheed’s deal it would be $7.9 mil that the C’ could take back in a potential trade.

    Beasley at $4.6 mil + O’Neal at up to $3.3 – $3.4 roughly. That would not be a bad trade considering it would give them much more depth up front and some good youth, and rebounding from O’Neal as well as his D. Now it’s dependent on if O’Neal will go from $23mil to $3mil with the chance of winning a ring?

    Another possibility but probably less likely:
    Sheed – $6.3 + Davis $3 x 125% plus 100k = $11,725,000. Big Al = $12,000,000. If they can get something in there to make the math work they might be able to pull that which would be an even better trade I think. Al is a 20-10 type guy and has GREAT rebounding skills and excellent low post offense. That would be the absolute best situation for them. Maybe that and throw in Luke for them! LOL!

    A 20-10 guy for a 20-10 guy!

  • Jeff

    @ idunno

    He’s listed as both because he is a combo guard but undersized for the SG position. Although I completely agree that I want to see him as a SG because even if he is somewhat undersized, if his defensive skills and athleticism and toughness are as good as people say, then he will do just fine at either guard spot.

    If he can spell Rondo and Ray that’d be awesome. He’d be able to play 25-30 minutes a game eventually giving Rondo 10-15 good minutes of rest a night and Ray another 10-15. TA can cover the smaller SF’s and I hope they keep Gaffney too. He’d be fun to watch! Imagine a small lineup of Rondo, Bradley, TA, Gaffney and Davis?! The energy would be through the roof!

    I’d like to see them keep Gaffney and Lafaette at least for roster filler to give them a chance. They wont cost much and they might be able to learn!

    Any chance we can grab back Lester Hudson in the summer to see how much he’s improved?

    I liked his scoring upside. I thought he had potential.

  • Jay P

    Avery will need to improve his range to be able to play any SG at the pro level.

    He doesn’t have NBA 3 point range yet.

  • Dave

    Sheed has a 15% kicker per shamsports. So, depending on whether you base it off the 09/10 salary or 10/11 salary it could be as much as $9M @125% of salary.

  • lakershater13

    Good news. Bruins look good next year.

  • lakershater13

    Bradley will be having ankle surgery after getting injured during a pre draft work out. More bad news.

  • Jay P

    Bring your negativity elsewhere.

  • Adrian

    Honestly i didnt think we needed him since our biggest problem was rebounding. His field goal % is pretty low but that could just be for ill-advised shots. Lest be honest Perkins has no offensive potential that i see any ways Kg is getting older, and Big Baby is undersized. And as good as a defender he is, he height will be a negative against the Kobe, and Durant. As for the other guy we picked, another undersized big man 6’6 without shoes. I think Danny has something planned though. As for grading i will give C-.

  • Jay P

    Drafting for need is a bad idea, you always take the guy you have rated highest on your board.

    Best available for development, potential, and judging if they have the “x” factor that’ll get them over the top.

    How ya think Ainge was ever able to pull off the KG trades, he drafted those guys that became the pieces to make the trade.

    Now he’s doing it again. Bradley just happens to be a guy who will also serve a need for this team if he develops into a solid backup PG.

  • NV

    B-

    Luke Harangody was what brought it down…

  • I love Green

    Im just hoping Avery can get a consistant 3 point jumper, and be able to be productive when he’s playing on the floor with Rondo.

  • Shooter

    Actually from what i’ve seen of Harangody he’s a very good rebounder.He’s got good instincts-effort and hustle,good positioning,strong base and upper body,and great timing.He could help us out on the boards,it’s his offense that needs work.The only saving grace i see for Luke is his tough mental and physical approach each and every night.He’s a work horse , he’ll get his points off offensive boards and garbage buckets.
    As for Bradley…..he’s super athletic,great defender,basically a younger – more athletic version of Rondo without his passing game……….yet anyway.

    Would love to see these rookies in pre season action or summer league.
    B-

  • Steve

    It’s funny but I could have SWORN that when they announced “Sheed” was retiring I said we should trade his contract. In fact, I even posted it here on CH. At the time all I heard was we would get partial value on his contract but have to eat the rest and it would really offer no cap relief. Now a few days later and it seems everyone is jumping on the idea. It just makes more sense if you are trying to compete this year to get a $6 million player than to get $3 million back that you can’t spend because you are still over the cap. With that plus the mid level we could have 2 guys in the $6 mill range or a handful of solid guys to fill out the roster for our last run.

  • rob

    what do you think the chances are that we actually get to see bradley play legit minutes for this team. I have faith in danny that he will never let luke even put a celtics jersey on.

  • KC

    From a report on Jarvis Varnado:

    “It’s also worth mentioning his strength. Varnado was only able to bench press 185 pounds three times in Chicago.  That ranked third to last among 43 players who were measured on the bench. UTEP’s Derrick Caracter benched 185 lbs. 22 times, second most to Notre Dame’s Luke Harangody with 23.”

    Say what you want, but Harangody is strong.

  • lakershater13

    Bradley reminds me a lot of Pruit. Im just confused why no one seems to think its an issue that he is having ankle surgery. Wouldnt you like to see our number 19 pick play in our summer league? Well he wont be. He will be down for 6 weeks. He was injured with an ankle problem in college and then while working out for teams before the draft he gets his ankle injured again. There could be a reason he dropped to us. I just think at 19 we should have taken a real SG which would have been Anderson.

    I am a bit more excited about harangody now than i was on draft night. The guy is a lot more athletic than people give him credit. His defense is still a question but coming off the bench he doesnt need to be a 40 minute a game defensive stopper. With his jump shot he will have the ability to play the SF in the nba which will allow the celtics if they keep him to really cause head aches on offense with a player like him. Not too many SFs will be able to deal with his size and strength. Keeping him and Big Baby off the glass could be tough for other teams to do.

  • http://carlosrizik@gmail.com Carlos R.

    If Bradley was the best player available as so many experts and fans say, then the pick was the best available, so I don’t understand all the negative comments about Ainge’s selection. He could be an important part of the C’s or a big asset in a future deal. I like the kid, he’s got an incredible talent and if he is as good as everybody says on defense, he’ll fit in pretty well.

  • legs-diamond

    Luke Harangody was a great college player. He’s extremely smart, strong (though not especially big), not extremely quick of foot, a non quitter–seems he may have an upside the likes of say… Luke Walton. I don’t know if Harangody can create offense for himself in the low block like he did in college, which may relegate him to being a jump shooter (a la Glen Davis?). Probably would be able to log some minutes from the get-go, but I don’t see upside. Pick number 52 (…).

  • Jason

    I liked the Bradley selection a lot. I was hoping they could get a big myself but unfortunately they were gone by 19. It’s true that Whiteside was available and his size and shotblocking ability were appetizing but he faces long odds of being a successful pro. The track record of big centers who fall all the into the late 20s or into the second round without a medical reason isn’t good. Evaluators aren’t dumb, with the exception of Kahn, and they love size so when they let one slip completely out of the first round, it’s a major warning sign. The one caveat is that he was taken by one of the best GMs in the business so he may be the exception to the rule.

    But getting back to Bradley, I love his defense. I love guys with great lateral quickness, I love watching defenders stifle penetration by beating them to the spot. This is one of the reasons I’ve always loved Pierce’s game. He never had the prototypical physique of a elite swingman but he was a freak in his ability to shift laterally. Bradley’s defensive skills are top of the line. He’s like Tony Allen in that respect but I think he’s smarter and more likely to be consistent (Tony’s defense was great in the playoffs but wasn’t deserving of his defensive rep prior to the playoffs). He also displayed very good defensive awareness, breaking up alley-oops and timing double teams.

    He’s like a slightly shorter Tony who can actually dribble and shoot (his shooting ability belies his atrocious free throw shooting percentage). He has the ability to be a two-way player. I don’t know if he can be a starter at two-guard on an elite team. It’s possible that his otherwordly defensive chops could allow him to overcome his size issues but at the very least, I think he’s going to be a valuable rotation player.

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