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After trading away the top pick in this year's draft, it's all but certain the Boston Celtics will not be drafting Markelle Fultz, to the chagrin of many a fan who'd talked themselves into the idea of the prospect becoming a Celt.


The move was a surprise to nearly every major analyst (excepting Kevin Pelton, who rated Lonzo Ball higher), and ultimately was the spark that lit the fire raging across the league yesterday. Could it be that "conventional" wisdom is simply unreliable with the fallout of the Golden State Warrior's historic win? If so, are projections and rumors the Celts are likely to take Jayson Tatum or Josh Jackson reliable or even likely? Who else might be in the mix to go third in the 2017 NBA Draft?


We previously reported on the unusual absence of Markelle Fultz from Boston's official "Draft Profile Series" on their YouTube channel, highlighting such prospects as Lauri Markkanen, Tatum, Jackson, and Ball. If these videos can be taken as indicative of the club's interest (no guarantee there, though the fact they are all members of the top of almost all major lottery projections certainly adds credence), there may be a few other players the Celts are mulling selecting. Let's take a quick look at those players, and why or why they might not be of interest to Boston.

D'Aaron Fox - Kentucky



WHY THEY'LL DRAFT HIM: He's probably the fastest guard likely to go in the lottery.
WHY THEY WON'T: He's probably the worst at shooting from deep in the lottery, too.

Dennis Smith Jr. - N.C. State



WHY THEY'LL DRAFT HIM: Incredibly athletic scorer with an advanced handle and good size.
WHY THEY WON'T: Subpar decision-making, footwork, and an ACL injury have hurt his stock.

Malik Monk - Kentucky



WHY THEY'LL DRAFT HIM: Can score from almost anywhere on the floor and is so, so fast.
WHY THEY WON'T: So fast he's out of control at times, a little short for the 2 and not the best defender.

Zach Collins - Gonzaga



WHY THEY'LL DRAFT HIM: Lethal shooting big man who is a solid rebounder and shot-blocker.
WHY THEY WON'T: Sloppy player who fouls and makes dumb mistakes and gets frustrated easily.
Do any of these players have a puncher's chance at getting taken with the third pick? Is there anyone from the Draft Profile Series Boston should have had, but didn't? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
For more stories about the offseason on CelticsLife, click here. For more by Justin, click here.



Photo via NBA.com
Follow Justin at @justinquinnn

Justin Quinn 6/21/2017 07:25:00 PM Edit
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