JULY 10TH: The Celtics have announced the signing of James Young via a team release. They confirmed the signing of fellow first round pick Marcus Smart in the same communication. Boston nabbed Young out of Kentucky with the No. 17 pick in June’s draft after securing Smart with the sixth selection. The athletic sharpshooter is likely to receive a salary worth a tick above $1.674MM, as our chart of salaries for first-round picks shows.
Young scored a team-high 20 points in a losing effort for the Wildcats in the National Championship game against Connecticut. He was also named second team All-SEC as a freshman. On a Celtics team with a dearth of wing players, Young figures to get playing time right away. Some draftniks expected him to flirt with the top ten, which might bode well for Boston considering their recent draft history. Celtics GM Danny Ainge has landed players like Al Jefferson, Rajon Rondo, Avery Bradley and Jared Sullinger at similar stages of previous drafts. Young’s athleticism and polished jumper could make him a steal at 17.
Our Eddie Scarito took a look at Young a few months ago in our Prospect Profile series.