Boston Celtics: Kelly Olynyk Could Shock the NBA Next Season

By Ryan Heckman


James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

When the Boston Celtics took Kelly Olynyk in the 2013 NBA Draft, there were many — and still are many — critics. Plenty of fans did not like the pick because they see Olynyk as one-dimensional and not able to take his game to the next level.

So far this summer, it looks like a brilliant pick.

During the Summer League, Olynyk has surprised by averaging nearly 20 points, 8.0 rebounds 2.8 assists and 2.0 steals on 57.4 percent shooting. In a way, I guess, it’s not too shocking.

All Olynyk did at Gonzaga was what he’s doing this summer so far. He can score in a variety of ways and at a highly efficient rate. Olynyk can shoot lights out but also uses his 7’0” 230 pound frame  in the post to his advantage.

Granted, this is only summer league and as usual should not be taken too seriously. But, something feels a bit different about Olynyk. In what we expected to be somewhat of a one-trick pony, he has performed well in all aspects. Offensive rebounding and defense have been above average — something his critics didn’t see coming.

A seven-footer with such offensive prowess is a rare breed and the Celtics could have stolen him midway through the first round. Coming out of college, Olynyk was the highest rated player in terms of efficiency out of all the prospects. Boston must have taken note of that.

In 2013, which is sure to be the beginning of a rebuilding process for Boston, Olynyk could wind up being a star of the team along with point guard Rajon Rondo — assuming he’s not traded. With Rondo’s ability to get his teammates involved in a variety of ways, he may end up putting Olynyk’s talents to use in a phenomenal way.

Don’t be surprised if next season we are talking about how intelligent of a pick Olynyk turned out to be. Although, don’t be surprise if he winds up being the complete opposite, because, after all summer league doesn’t mean anything.

Ryan Heckman is a Senior NBA Writer for Follow him on Twitter  @ryanmheckman, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.


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