The NBA Draft Lottery has finally happened, and we can finally say definitively that the Boston Celtics have pick numbers 6 and 17 in the first round. This is a very deep draft, and even with those picks, you can, at worst, draft rotation pieces.
If developed properly, this can turn into a star-studded NBA Draft. One prospect that should be looked at for the Celtics is Croatian International point forward Dario Saric (pronounced “shawrich”).
At 6-foot-10, Saric is arguably the most offensively versatile player in this year’s draft. He’s shown the ability to handle the ball in transition, score on the block, work in iso situations in the half-court, play off the ball, and rebound the ball at a very high rate.
Despite his fluidity, he’s not a super athlete. His basketball IQ and knowledge of how the game works is amazing. His passing ability is something that sets him apart from many in this draft.
Saric has improved noticeably as a defender, putting in more effort, and his anticipation is second to none. He is an extremely competitive person who hustles at all aspects of the game just to win. He’ll do whatever it takes to help his team to victory.
He needs to add strength, but that can be said about a lot of prospects. If he intends to stay at power forward, where he plays now in Europe, it’ll be tough for him to handle his own on the block.
Another concern that teams should have is when exactly will Saric come over to the NBA. Many in his camp have said he wants to stay one or two more years in Europe to get some more experience.
He also has to improve as a perimeter shooter. He’s gotten better but he is still inconsistent in that part of his game.
A good NBA comparison for Saric is Hedo Turkoglu, a forward who likes to handle the ball and can distribute and get his own shot. Neither is an explosive athlete, but the basketball IQ for each is through the roof. Turkoglu at his best was a really good player in the NBA. Injuries and bad decisions derailed his career.