BOSTON (CBS) — When the Celtics drafted Aaron Nesmith with the 14th overall pick last week, they addressed the team’s need for more shooting. Nesmith described himself as a “sniper” who would be hitting shots for the Celtics in no time.
But there was some concern just how quickly the rookie could contribute. Nesmith missed a chunk of his sophomore season at Vanderbilt with a foot injury, which eventually ended his season early and required surgery.
With just over a month between the draft and the start of the new season, it seemed like Nesmith’s start with the Celtics would be delayed. But the rookie said that will not be the case when he was introduced by the team on Tuesday.
“I’ll be good to go,” Nesmith said at the Auerbach Center in Brighton. “I’ve done everything so far workout-wise. It’s good. I’m 100 percent and I won’t miss a beat.”
Nesmith was quite the marksman for the Commodores last year, knocking down 52 percent of his three-point attempts. He’s eager and ready to do the same for the Celtics as a rookie, and is confident that his skills will translate to the NBA level.
“It’s just the body of work, the repetition. For me, nothing changes,” he explained. “My warmup, my form, my footwork doesn’t change. As long as I can continue to perfect those attributes, there’s no reason for my shot not to translate from one level to the next.”
Nesmith and fellow Boston draft pick Payton Pritchard, drafted 26th overall out of Oregon, are both in Boston already to get a jump on their NBA careers. Both are trying to get ahead of the curve before their rookie season begins.
“Just come in and compete,” said Pritchard. “We’re looking forward to next year and hopefully we have a great team and have a chance. Our focus is on getting better and competing from the start.”
The NBA season is set to tip off on Dec. 22.