Draft Notes: Celtics, Z. Smith, Knicks, Hornets

After having stocked up in draft picks in many recent seasons, the Celtics head into this month’s draft with only one selection at No. 27 overall. That allows Boston to narrow its focus during its pre-draft preparations, and the club is doing just that as it weighs its options at No. 27, according to director of player personnel Austin Ainge (Twitter link via Chris Forsberg of ESPN.com).

“I think there are about 10 guys that we’ve kind of narrowed it down to that we think have a chance to be there,” said the Celtics’ executive. “Like I said, we evaluate the whole draft all the time. But we’ve kind of tried to laser focus in to about 10.”

One of those 10 players could be Duke’s Grayson Allen, who is viewed as a probable late first-round pick and is working out for Boston today, as previously reported. Joining him at that group workout are Deng Adel (Louisville), Jeffrey Carroll (Oklahoma State), Billy Preston (Bosnia), Allonzo Trier (Arizona), and Kenrich Williams (TCU), tweets Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe.

Here are a few more pre-draft workout updates:

  • Texas Tech guard Zhaire Smith is the latest top prospect to schedule a workout with the Knicks, according to ESPN’s Ian Begley, who writes that Smith will earn a look from the club on Saturday. New York is auditioning a handful of potential lottery picks tomorrow, with Miles Bridges and Kevin Knox also set to attend.
  • Elsewhere on the Knicks‘ scouting front, the team was represented at Michael Porter Jr.‘s Pro Day today, though Scott Perry and Steve Mills didn’t attend as previously reported, tweets Ian Begley of ESPN.com. The Knicks have a pre-draft meeting scheduled with Porter, Begley adds.
  • The Hornets are hosting their fourth pre-draft workout on Saturday, according to the team. Joe Chealey (College of Charleston), Allerik Freeman (N.C. State), Dakota Mathias (Purdue), Doral Moore (Wake Forest), and Jeff Roberson (Vanderbilt) will participate, alongside Texas A&M’s Robert Williams.
  • After auditioning for Charlotte, Purdue guard Dakota Mathias also has workouts on tap with the Lakers, Pistons, and Kings, a league source tells Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com (Twitter link). Mathias, who averaged 12.0 PPG with a .466 3PT% in his senior year, previously worked out for Toronto.
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8 thoughts on “Draft Notes: Celtics, Z. Smith, Knicks, Hornets

  1. Andrewc62

    Smith is stretch at 9.
    Would love to see Celtics grab Grayson Allen, just another strong defensive player we can add, if he’s 75% of what Delly was in the ‘15 finals I’d be satisfied with him.

  2. There really is a wealth of talented 2 guards who are projected to go in the middle to bottom of the 1st round of this draft. Smith is right up there with Walker and Brown and others who have excellent NBA profiles. If Mikal Bridges (or someone completely unexpected) is not there at #9, then the Knicks should trade down if they can (and I think they should be able to based on what the landscape would be in that case).

    • x%sure

      Sometime before the draft I want to pick a favorite from all those 2Gs that follow the Bridges. Troy Brown’s rise halted.

      • For me, it would be a coin toss btw Walker and Smith. Probably lean Smith right now just because I like his FR year better. But, in fairness, they were in different situations.

        • x%sure

          I have seen Walker in the top 10 but I think he too will fall back down… there is so much volatility in the rankings after about 14.

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