The Celtics have signed No. 33 overall pick Jordan Mickey, the team announced. The sides had been in talks last week. The big man had been pushing for a short-term deal, but it appeared he had come around to the idea of a longer arrangement, as Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald reported last week. It’s a four-year, $5MM deal, reports Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops, and two years are guaranteed, adds Shams Charania of RealGM (Twitter links). So, the Celtics use cap space for the transaction.
Mickey told Zach Links of Hoops Rumors that he heard from officials with a team picking in the late first round that their club would take him if he were available at that point in the draft, but instead he slipped into the early portion of the second round, where Boston, which worked him out for a second time on the eve of the draft, was waiting. He’s 6’8″ and figures to see most of his time at power forward, but he’s a shot blocker, having swatted 3.6 per game last season as a sophomore for LSU, so he figures to help fill Boston’s need for a rim protector. He was the 31st-best prospect in the draft as Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress rated them, while Chad Ford of ESPN.com had him at No. 45.
Optimism about the possibility of a deal surrounded the talks as they began last week, as Jay King of MassLive detailed, and Mickey was going to end up on Boston’s roster for this coming season one way or another, Bulpett wrote. The Matt Babcock client was prepared at one point in negotiations to sign the non-guaranteed one-year offer for the minimum-salary that the C’s were required to make to retain his draft rights, according to Bulpett, but that didn’t end up happening.