Olynyk, after acquired by the Celtics from the Dallas Mavericks on draft night, might have preferred having a chance to play with Boston greats like Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce before they landed with other teams. He’ll likely get his chance to battle for playing time and be a key member for a Celtics team that went through a dramatic overhaul during the offseason,, and now has a new coach with Brad Stevens.
In 26.4 minutes of college action at Gonzaga last season, Olynyk averaged 17.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.1 blocks per game. He shot 62.9 percent from the floor and 77.6 percent from the foul-line.
He’s 7-foot-0, 238 pounds, but Olynyk is versatile despite his size, can shoot 3-pointers fairly well, and he is an efficient scorer. Can he mix it up with some of the NBA big men inside? That’s extremely questionable, but if he continues to get stronger, Olynyk can hold his own. It’s a matter of how long it will take.
During summer league action, he averaged 18 points and 7.8 rebounds, and 57.8 percent from the field over five games, but also averaged 4.2 fouls and 2.4 turnovers per game. It’s obvious that he still needs to get disciplined at the pro level.
Olynyk did show Celtics coaches his ability to hit the jumper and that he wasn’t going to shy away from any play or possession. He also has the appetite to learn as much and as quickly as he can.
Reports that he has been suffering from plantar fasciitis have been downplayed by the Celtics.
If that’s not an issue, then Olynyk likely will have an impact for the Celtics as a rookie. He’s not a franchise player, but he should be able to help the Celtics more than many NBA observers might think.