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NBA Boston Celtics

2014 NBA Draft: Boston Celtics Should Target Shabazz Napier

Shabazz Napier

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After suffering all season, fans have high expectations for the Boston Celtics this offseason and hope the rebuilding phase is short lived. In a potentially well-stocked draft, the Celtics have two first-round draft picks thanks to the Brooklyn Nets. One of the draft picks is lottery pick, which has  a great chance of being a top-five pick. Their second pick, from the Nets, is projected to be at No. 18.

Depending on what they do with their first pick, the Celtics should use the No. 18 pick to draft Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier.

Napier is fresh off an NCAA national championship run in which he led the Huskies all the way. The 22-year old guard enjoyed a terrific year by averaging 18 PPG, 4.9 APG, 5.9 RPG and 1.8 STLPG while shooting 41 percent from beyond the arc. In the tournament, Napier turned his game up to another notch by averaging 21.2 points and shooting 47 percent from 3-point land.

The UConn guard comes up big in clutch situations and steps up his game during big moments. Having a fearless player like Napier on the roster will improve this team drastically.

Napier is a lethal weapon on the offensive end. He can score in a variety of ways, and also fills the stat sheet with a assists and rebounds. Some negative aspects that may cause him to drop in the draft are his size (6-foot-1), his limited defensive ability and below-average athleticism. Nonetheless, this kid competes and possesses a unique winner’s mentality.

Drafting Napier could very well mean Rajon Rondo is out the door, or he could be the back up in Rondo’s final contract year. Shabazz demonstrated outstanding leadership and a winner’s mentality during his senior year at UConn. Boston should look into obtaining the young guard to run the team at the helm. Napier would be a wise choice for the Boston Celtics.

Michael LeDuc is a Boston Celtics writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @mike_leduc, and add him on Google.