By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
Rumors swirled throughout the week, but the Boston Celtics kept their No. 14 overall pick, and used it to take one of the best shooters in the entire draft, selecting Vanderbilt’s Aaron Nesmith.
Standing at 6-foot-6, Nesmith’s 2019-20 campaign with the Commodores was a breakout one, with 23 points per game (seventh-highest nightly average in the NCAA last year) and makes on 60 of his 115 tries from beyond the arc. That 52.2 percent success rate from deep made Nesmith the deadliest shooter in all of college hoops last year, and Nesmith had four games with at least seven makes from deep before a stress fracture in his foot ended his season after just 14 games.
And in case those stats didn’t tell you, Nesmith is a pure scorer. That’s a definite need for the C’s bench, too, especially when you look at how would-have-been Celtic Tyler Herro torched Boston in the third-round meeting between Boston and Miami.
It was a need even before Herro and the Heat helped bounce the Celtics out of the Orlando bubble, really, with the Celtics averaging just 28.5 points from their bench last season, which was the second-worst nightly average in all of the NBA. The Celtics’ bench options also shot just 31.8 percent from deep, which was the third-worst mark in the league.
“Nesmith’s physical profile is a plus, but it is his track record as a shooter that makes him so intriguing,” Nesmith’s official draft profile read. “…He proved extremely reliable in catch and shoot situations both when spotting up and when running into shots off of screens. Serving as the focal point of much of what the Commodores did offensively, his consistency shined as he scored no fewer than 14 points in any of his 14 games as a sophomore.”
Barring a trade, the Celtics will have two more picks by the end of the first round, at No. 26 and No. 30 overall.
Ty Anderson talked about the Celtics’ draft prospects (and predicted Aaron Nesmith) on the newest episode of the Sports Hub Sidelines podcast. Listen below.