Celtics NBA Draft Preview: No. 16 Pick Has Been Mixed Bag, But Potential Exists


All eyes will be on the Celtics’ No. 3 pick at the 2016 NBA Draft, but Boston’s work only will begin there.

The Celtics own a total of eight picks in Thursday’s draft, including the No. 16 overall selection, which could yield a solid prospect.

So, what type of player should Boston fans expect at 16th overall? Let’s take a look at the last 10 picks at that position to see how they’ve panned out.

2015: Terry Rozier, Guard, Boston Celtics
2015-16 stats: 1.8 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 0.9 apg
Rozier had a pretty minimal impact during his rookie season on the guard-heavy Celtics. But the Louisville product is an exceptional athlete and showed signs of explosiveness during his brief stints, so the future could be brighter.

2014: Jusuf Nurkic, Center, Chicago Bulls (traded to Denver Nuggets)
2015-16 stats: 8.2 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.3 apg
The 7-foot big man out of Bosnia had a decent second season for Denver and could develop into a solid frontcourt presence. He has the potential to be one of the better No. 16 picks in recent memory.

2013: Lucas Nogueira, Center, Boston Celtics (traded to Atlanta Hawks)
2015-16 stats: N/A
The Brazilian 7-footer has seen limited NBA action and has bounced around the D-League since being traded from the Hawks to the Toronto Raptors in 2014.

2012: Royce White, Forward, Houston Rockets
2015-16 stats: N/A
After earning first-team All-Big 12 honors at Minnesota, White has been an NBA bust, appearing in a total of three games with the Sacramento Kings during the 2013-14 season.

2011: Nikola Vucevic, Center, Philadelphia 76ers
2015-16 stats: 18.2 ppg, 8.9 rpg, 2.8 ppg
The Sixers just missed out on Kawhi Leonard at No. 15, but Vucevic has developed into a very good frontcourt scorer since Philly traded him to the Orlando Magic after his rookie season.

2010: Luke Babbitt, Forward, Minnesota Timberwolves (traded to Portland Trail Blazers)
2015-16 stats: 7.0 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 1.1 apg
Babbitt has bounced back and forth between the NBA and the D-League but earned a career-high 18 minutes per game this season for the banged-up New Orleans Pelicans.

2009: James Johnson, Forward, Chicago Bulls
2015-16 stats: 5.0 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 1.2 apg
This was a tough pick for the Bulls. James has bounced between four teams in eight seasons as little more than a role player, while the No. 17 and No. 19 picks — Jrue Holiday and Jeff Teague — both developed into All-Stars.

2008: Marreese Speights, Center, Philadelphia 76ers
2015-16 stats: 7.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.8 apg
After playing for four different teams in his first seven seasons, Speights has found a home with the Golden State Warriors, becoming a valuable role player and earning a ring in the process in 2015

2007: Nick Young, Guard, Washington Wizards
2015-16 stats: 7.3 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 0.6 apg
“Swaggy P” comes with plenty of off-court drama and just had a pretty brutal season with the Los Angeles Lakers, but he’s still a decent scorer and one of the better players on this list.

2006: Rodney Carney, Forward, Chicago Bulls (traded to Philadelphia 76ers)
2015-16 stats: N/A
Carney hasn’t played in the NBA since 2011 and currently plays in Puerto Rico. The Bulls likely are kicking themselves after this one, too, as Rajon Rondo went 21st and Kyle Lowry went 24th.

Click for the NBA draft’s last 10 picks at No. 3 >>

Thumbnail photo via Cary Edmonson/USA TODAY Sports Images

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