As part of WEEI’s coverage of the 2018 NBA Draft here is one in a series of profiles of prospective picks. The Celtics have one pick, the 27th overall. The draft will be held on June 21.
Age: 21 (turns 22 on August 31)
Weight: 190 pounds
2017-18 Stats: 18.9 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 4.6 apg
Scouting Report: As the point guard of a championship program at Villanova, Brunson has shown he has very good control over an offense as the primary floor general. He registered a 2.59 assist to turnover ratio as a junior and can opt to shoot the ball if he needs to, shooting at a .510/.393/.820 (field goal, three point field goal, free throw) percentage.
The downside to drafting a player like Brunson is the lack of further development in his game. At 21-years-old, may have already reached his ceiling. He can score in addition to passing, he’s a capable shooter who has shown enough strength to finish at the rim, but it is unknown for sure how his game will translate professionally. Although he can muscle through the paint, Brunson doesn’t have elite athleticism or speed. To scouts, it is possible this will put him at a disadvantage as a defender against switches and world class point guards, likely the only position he will be able to defend.
Notes: Brunson is a decorated player who is no stranger to winning. He is a two-time NCAA champion and has been awarded with the Naismith College Player of the Year, the Wooden Award, and the Big East Player of the Year Award. He is touted as an older, jack of all trades, master of none prospect. Though at the end of the day, Brunson is a very smart player, with offensive numbers to suggest he can help a pro offense while coming off the bench.
The point guard is projected to go early in the second round, which based on pick formation, would land him with a rebuilding team like the Suns, Grizzlies or Mavericks. Brunson could join a contender like the Sixers, Celtics, or Warriors (picks 26, 27, and 28 respectively), if he was to go late in the first round. As an experienced player with an NBA ready basketball IQ, he would be a valuable pick-up for a winning team if the latter occurs.
For the Celtics at No. 27, Brunson is a very realistic guard target, as quality big men prospects will be limited by the time they select. As a capable scoring lefty who has performed in high pressure situations, Brunson may remind some Celtics fans of former Lakers point guard Derek Fisher. Though the Nova product’s ceiling is a player more like Mark Jackson, someone who can pass just as well as score. Brunson’s addition would be another piece to the point guard depth chart puzzle, but if the team was to lose one or both of their bench guards in Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier to free agency, Brunson would already be waiting in the wings as a serviceable back-up to Kyrie Irving.
Full article @ 2018 Potential Celtics: Villanova G Jalen Brunson
Source: GreenStreet Blog