A look back at the 3 times previously the Celtics owned other teams' lottery picks
Ron Mercer didn't seem all that thrilled to have to continue playing for Rick Pitino
Most fans know that the Celtics haven't had much luck with the NBA lottery. Ever since it was created to prevent tanking (ha) after the Hakeem Olajuwon draft, the Celtics have had little to show from the lottery. Worst record in 1997, but dropped down to the #3 spot. 2nd worst record in 2007, but fell back to the #5 spot. It's not just their own picks. The one time they appeared to get lucky was in 1986 when they jumped up in the lottery with the Sonics pick they owned to draft Len Bias. That luck quickly turned to tragedy.
The Celtics would have continued to win
championships in the late 80's and 90's with Bias
The two other times we owned another team's lottery pick were in 1997 when we owned the Mavericks pick due to a very solid trade on M.L. Carr's part as well as well as 2001 when we owned Denver's pick. Ironically the latter pick became our's after we traded the player drafted with the Mavs pick in 1997. That would be Ron Mercer. The Celtics wasted the 2011 pick on Kedrick Brown at #11 after making a very solid choice with their own #10 pick on Joe Johnson. Of course Chris Wallace then proceeded to double down on the Kedrick Brown disaster, by trading Johnson instead of Brown after the Suns requested Brown first in the Rogers/Delk trade.
Way too much to say here to fit in a caption
While I've been waiting for tonight for a long time with the hope that the Celtics can jump into the top 2 to draft either Simmons or Ingram, no one can really judge how things turned out in this year's draft for the Celtics until the player we drafted plays some games. Maybe we fall back in the draft and have to settle for a Jamal Murray who then blossoms into an all-star guard. Maybe Simmons and/or Ingram end up busts. Sometimes guys get injured (Oden, Roy).
The reality is just as important as where the pick lands is what Ainge does with it. Sometimes trading a lottery pick is the right move (Ray Allen). Other times it's idiotic (Billups, Johnson, or when Ainge traded the #7 pick for Sebastian Telfair). Remember last year when the Knicks feel from #2 to #4 and the Lakers moved up. I don't think the Knicks are complaining about having to "settle" for Porzingis at #4.
So regardless of what happens tonight, no one jump of the Tobin please. And Danny if you are going to trade the pick make sure you're trading a Kedrick Brown and not a Joe Johnson. Also, kindly make sure the player you are acquiring is more Ray Allen and less Sebastian Telfair. Lastly thank you Billy King for being one of the last GM's to not protect traded lottery picks.