The Boston Celtics have finally brought their long, despondent season to a close, and fans couldn’t be more excited of what is ahead. The Celtics concluded their season by losing 11 of their last 13 games, which ultimately puts them in strong position in the 2014 NBA Draft and the rest of the offseason all together. Here is a breakdown of where they stand in the lottery race.
Their 25-57 record makes the Celtics tied for the fourth-worst record in the NBA with the Utah Jazz. The three teams ahead of the Celtics are the Milwaukee Bucks, Philadelphia 76ers and the Orlando Magic. The Celtics officially have a 10.4 percent chance at obtaining the first overall pick in the draft and are guaranteed to have a top-eight pick.
To break it down even further, Boston have a 33 percent chance of getting in the top-three, a 95 percent chance for a top-five pick and only a five percent chance of selecting outside the top-five. The worst case scenario is if six of the 14 lottery teams jump ahead of the Celtics and they end up with the eighth pick in the draft, which only has a 0.2 percent chance of happening.
The highest-ranked prospects include Jabari Parker, Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid, Julius Randle, Marcus Smart, Dante Exum, Noah Vonleh and Aaron Gordon. All eight of these players can be impact players their rookie season. So, the Celtics are in good shape selecting anywhere in the top eight. However, getting in the top-five or, better yet, in the top-three would be ideal. The higher the pick, the more viable options and trade leverage you have.
In addition to their lottery pick, the Celtics have the 17th pick from the Brooklyn Nets. With two picks in a talented draft, Boston is in terrific position to do something significant this offseason, and I’m eager to see what Danny Ainge can do. It’s been a job well done by the Celtics in their rebuilding season as a 12-14 start became a 25-57 final record. With the 2013-14 nightmare of a season behind the Celtics, fans can now look forward to better days in Boston.