After a depressing offseason thus far, Celtics fans can finally see a plan coming to fruition. Coming into the draft there were questions about everything about the Celtics. Would they try and move up, stay where they were and be content or move back. With any Celtics draft we got a little bit of it all but finally we have found a plan heading into next season.
#14 – Romeo Langford (G, University of Indiana)
2018 College Stats: 16.5 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 2.3 APG, .448 FG%, .272 3P%, .722 FT%
Analysis: The 19 year old guard has shown flashes of being a superstar, however also has shown a major red flag when it comes to shooting from distance. Langford is a 6’6 smooth wing scorer who can create off the dribble as well as find open teammates when he needs too. He also does a really good job getting to the free throw line where he averaged 6.1 free throw attempts a game. The one issue with Langford has been the jumper in which he only shot 27 percent behind the arc at the collegiate level. Langford did deal with a thumb injury on his shooting hand for most of the year and could be a reason why his shooting numbers were so poor. Overall this is a really solid pick for the Celtics because of Langford’s potential and the hope is Langford’s game will transition really well into the NBA.
#20 – *Traded to Philadelphia for picks #24 and #33 (Mattise Thybulle, G, University of Washington)
#22 – Grant Williams (F, University of Tennessee)
2018 College Stats: 18.8 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 3.2 APG, .564 FG%, .326 3P%, .819 FT%
Analysis: The two-time SEC player of the year is headed to Boston and although his college numbers are very impressive it is unsure how he will transition into the NBA. Williams is an undersized Power Forward only standing 6’7. It is also unsure how Williams will be at stretching the floor as he only shot 32 percent from behind the arc. The positives with this pick is a hard work ethic and the ability to get to the charity stripe as he averaged seven free throw attempts a game. Overall if Williams continues to work hard hopefully he can turn into a high energy forward who can contribute from day one.
#24 – *Traded to Phoenix along with Aaron Baynes for Milwaukee Bucks 2020 First round pick (Ty Jerome, G, University of Virginia)
#33 – Carsen Edwards (G, Purdue University)
2018 College Stats: 24.3 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 2.9 APG, .394 FG%, .355 3P%, .837 FT%
Analysis: Carsen Edwards was the talk of the NCAA tournament averaging 34.8 points per game as he led Purdue to the Elite Eight. Edwards is a 6’1 scoring guard who can get a bucket from anywhere on the floor. The only question regarding him is how well will he defend at the next level with his small frame. Overall Edwards can be a good steal at #33 if he can continue to show his scoring ways. It will be interesting to watch him in Summer League to see if he can continue to show off his scoring while also running an offense.
#51 Tremont Waters (G, Louisiana State University)
2018 College Stats: 15.3 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 5.8 APG, .430 FG%, .327 3P%, .813 FT%
Analysis: Tremont Waters is a very solid two-way point guard as he averaged over 15 points a game and over two steals a game for both of his seasons at LSU. He also ran the offense well and is very good off the pick and roll. The question is height where Waters is only 5’11 and could struggle against switches at the next level. Overall Waters is most likely going to be a two-way player this year and can continue to grow on his outside shooting.
As a Whole…
The Celtics ended up having a busy night trading out of the first round twice, however they used the opportunity to gain more cap space and a 2020 first round pick. The big win is the Celtics now can potentially have up to $35 million dollars in cap space heading into free agency where they look to “retool” as Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck stated after the draft was over. At the end of the day the Celtics gained a lot of guard depth showing that they will be most likely targeting big men in free agency and maybe they can put together a playoff team behind Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Gordon Hayward.
Draft Grade: B