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Friday, June 27, 2014

Celtics Keep Their 2014 Draft Picks (For Now) To Select Marcus Smart & James Young

After months and months of anticipation (remember how terrible last season was for the Celtics?), finally tonight was the 2014 NBA Draft. Boston kept both of their picks (No. 6 and No. 17; none in the second round) and chose Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart along with Kentucky swingman James Young. Right up there with mock drafts, I think that instant analysis the night of the event is ridiculous so I'll hold off pretending to predict the future in terms of their NBA careers.

What I can say with confidence after watching him for two seasons as a Cowboy is that Smart is a winner: tough, dependable, competitive and athletic. The main knock on him is that he can't shoot but I think he does so many other things well that it's not a huge deal. I have to admit that I know much less about Young who left Kentucky after his freshman year (where they went to the NCAA Championship game and lost to UConn). He's a lefty and outstanding 3-point shooter.

The natural reaction to these selections for Celtics fans has to be wondering what this all means in terms of Rajon Rondo. You only need so many guards on an NBA team so you question if he'll be dealt at some point this summer. Still, if they hope to land Kevin Love in a trade or attract marquee free agents (keep dreaming), Rondo is the only way to accomplish that successfully.

Smart could have been the No. 1 pick if he came out after his freshman season. Young seemed to get better as his only season with the Wildcats went on, particularly in the NCAA Tournament. They are both youngsters: James is only 18 (@realjamesyoung on Twitter) and turns 19 in August while Marcus (@smart_MS3) is 20. I can't remember if the Celtics are participating in a Summer League but if so, you can bet their two newest draft picks will be in it.

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