It’s not too early for the Boston Celtics to prepare for the distant future.
ESPN’s Jonathan Givony used the 2020 Hoophall Classic, which took place last weekend in Springfield, Ma., as a chance to project how the 2021 NBA Draft will unfold. He predicts the Celtics will keep their first- and second-round picks and use them on Cam Thomas at No. 26 overall and Colbey Ross at No. 56 overall, respectively.
Thomas, a 6-foot-4 shooting guard, currently plays for high-school powerhouse Oak Hill Academy. He committed in November to attend LSU, and Givony believes he’ll show enough promise to enter the NBA Draft in 2021 as a one-and-done player.
Ross currently is in his junior season at Pepperdine, where he has averaged 17.5 points, 3.2 rebounds and 6.6 assists during his college career. The 6-foot-1 point guard likely will have four years of college-basketball experience when he enters the NBA Draft in 2021.
Also interesting in Givony’s 2021 Mock NBA Draft is the absence of the Memphis Grizzlies first-round pick, which might loom large in Boston’s future. The pick is protected in 2020 and will convey to the Celtics if it falls outside the top-six spots. If Memphis holds onto it in 2020, Boston will receive it in 2021 without protections.
Should the latter scenario happen, Boston’s approach to the 2021 NBA Draft will be much different than the one Givony envisions.