The Boston Celtics selected LSU forward Jordan Mickey with the 33rd pick in this year’s draft. Mickey played two seasons at LSU before deciding to forgo the rest of collegiate career and enter the NBA draft. He excelled in college as a shot blocker and rebounder. In his sophomore year he led the nation in blocks per game as well as the SEC in rebounds per game. Mickey is an undersized NBA power forward, but he makes up for his lack of height with his length and athleticism. Thus far most of his worth has been on the defensive end. He is listed at 6’8” and is small for an NBA power forward in height and in weight, which hurts him on the offensive end. Overall he is very raw offensively, but he can still make a large impact on a ball game. Most of his offensive comes around the rim on put backs and easy baskets.
Graphic via al
The Boston Celtics already showed how they value Mickey when they gave him the richest contract ever for a second round draft pick. At first, his place on the roster was in question due to the large amount of forwards already on the team, but this move shows that he is in Boston to stay and could potentially become a contributor early on. Boston’s confidence in Mickey came from his performance at the summer league where he made them a believer. He showed that he can make an immediate impact in the NBA as a rebounder and shot blocker. He also showed that he is capable enough on offense not to be a liability at that end. He blocked at least 3 shots in 5 separate games to along with 4 double digit rebounding games. He also averaged over 12 points per game. Still, even with the vote of confidence based on his contract, Mickey will have plenty of work to do to earn minutes in his rookie season. It is too early to tell if Boston believes he can contribute now or if they wanted to keep him around to develop. The Celtics are still a young team but after reaching the playoffs last season they expect to be back in the mix again. In the offseason the Celtics traded for David Lee, signed Amir Johnson and already had the likes of Tyler Zeller, Kelly Olynyk, and Jared Sullinger. The good news is that Mickey’s game is different from the likes of Sullinger, Lee, and Johnson of whom he will be competing with at power forward. The majority of the Celtics big men are offensive threats so therefore there could be an opportunity for Mickey to step in as a defensive force. The Celtics showed their confidence in him early and now he must back it up.
Graphic via shreveporttimes