By Sam Sheehan
Dreams of DeAndre Ayton or Luka Doncic went up in smoke for Celtics fans just before the tip of Game Two of the Eastern Conference Finals. The NBA draft lottery was held in Chicago and the < 3% chance of receiving the Lakers’ pick from the Sixers did not pan out for the Celtics, as the Suns, Kings, and Hawks won the top three picks respectively. This means the Celtics will now receive the more favorable of the 2019 Sacramento Kings’ or Philadelphia 76ers’ 1st round pick with both top-1 protected.
This will almost certainly be the Kings pick given where the two franchises are, but it is at least worth mentioning. The Lakers half of the pick not conveying means that Celtics will only be left with their own pick in the 2018 draft, something that hasn’t happened to the Celtics since they traded up to draft Kelly Olynyk in 2013. Most Celtics fans will see that as a bad thing. Some Celtics fans will see it as a good thing. Where the truth is lies somewhere in between.
Getting a #2 or #3 pick in this 2018 draft was never very likely for the Celtics, but it certainly might have helped them, given how deep and need specific this draft is. Al Horford is one year away from the chance to opt out of his current deal, which leaves the Celtics in a tricky situation....