In trading the No. 1 pick to the Philadelphia Sixers, the Boston Celtics essentially passed on the opportunity to select Markelle Fultz, a star point guard who has emerged as the best prospect in the draft by most accounts. The Celtics, however, may not be so convinced about the University of Washington guard.
In explaining the deal on Monday, Celtics president Danny Ainge had this to day:
“We think there’s a really good chance the player that we’ll take at 3 was the same player we would have taken at 1.”- Danny Ainge on trade— Jessica Camerato (@JCameratoNBCS) June 19, 2017
Well, that is interesting. That means the Celtics are much higher on another prospect which could mean Josh Jackson of Kansas, De'Aaron Fox of Kentucky, Jayson Tatum of Duke or maybe even Lonzo Ball of UCLA, if they think he will fall past the Lakers at No. 2.
If Ainge is right and the Celtics do pick a better player than Fultz, then this trade will go down as a major success for them. They got this year's No. 3 pick from the Sixers and a future first round pick depending on protections.
Who do the Celtics like better than Fultz? We should find out Thursday, unless the Lakers pick him before they are on the clock, of course.