BOSTON (CBS) — There will be no Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid or Jabari Parker for the Boston Celtics at next month’s NBA Draft, as the C’s received the sixth overall pick at Tuesday night’s NBA Draft lottery.
That trio of potential stars will likely go 1-2-3, with Australian point guard Dante Exum the likely pick at no. 4. So who will be there when it comes time for Danny Ainge and the Celtics to pick? CBS Sports college basketball insider Gary Parrish joined Toucher & Rich on Wednesday, and said the Celtics should still be able to get a very good player with the sixth pick.
“Good talent will still be on the board at sixth. I would argue that picking sixth is better than picking one in last year’s draft,” said Parrish. “It didn’t go the way Boston fans wanted, but you can still get a good guy there, no question.”
Two players Parrish sees on the board for the Celtics are Kentucky’s Julius Randle and Indiana’s Noah Vonleh.
“You’re talking about the fifth pick being either Noah Vonleh or Julius Randle, and then I think [the Celtics] take whichever one is left one the board and feel pretty good about it,” said Parrish. “Randle is the higher profile guy, because he was ranked higher coming out of high school, played at Kentucky and was terrific on a bigger stage, while Vonlah was basically off the national radar because Indiana wasn’t top 25 and didn’t play in the NCAA Tournament. But I think (Vonleh) is the better upside pick. Randle delivered more at the collegiate level, but the way Vonleh measures and can already shoot the ball — I’d be very comfortable picking either one.”
VIEW: Parrish’s Mock Draft
The only issue for the Celtics should they draft either player is that they are both power forwards, a position Boston is currently stacked at with Jared Sullinger, Kelly Olynyk and Brandon Bass all on the roster. Would drafting either Randle or Vonleh give the C’s too many power forwards?
“I would never let Jared Sullinger move me off a guy I felt was the right guy,” said Parrish. “Different franchises have different philosophies, but you take the best guy available and worry about the details later. When you don’t draft someone because you have a guy you already kind of like, that’s how you end up taking Sam Bowie over Michael Jordan.
“We’re talking about Sullinger, not some five-time All Star or anyone that projects that way,” added Parrish. “If I was Ainge and I liked Randle, there would be no way in the world Jared Sullinger was the reason I didn’t draft him.”
Keefer Madness: History Of The Sixth Overall Pick
Parrish also touched on the Kevin Love trade rumors, the chances of the Celtics moving up in the draft, and the future of Rajon Rondo: