Boston Celtics: The Big Green Machine

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Batum and Hibbert Falling, Possible at #30?

Posted by r1zzo23 on June 22, 2008

With the Celtics selecting at #30, it’s always interesting for us to sit and watch some players’ stock drop. Sure you’d like to see that potential lottery pick fall into our laps with the last pick of the first round, but doesn’t that say something to you? Maybe it shoudl scare us away, but when you are selecting that late in the first round, beggars can’t be choosers. Now considering we are champions of the basketball world (I get chills every time I say that), I wouldn’t consider us beggars, but we’re always looking for that next good role player to add to this roster.

Roy Hibbert was a potential top-10 pick last year if he had kept his name in the draft with his teammate Jeff Green. Instead, he decided to return to school for his senior season and try to win a National Championship. With his Hoyas being bounced from the dance before claiming the ultimate prize, Hibbert’s draft stock took a terrible tumble down the boards compared to just one year ago. He was looking like a top-20 pick, but now there are reports he will fall to the Celtics at #30. This is from Marc Spears of the Boston Globe:

On Georgetown center Roy Hibbert’s draft stock, one NBA scout said, “Hibbert is going to need a parachute on draft day. The young centers have passed him in the eyes of teams. His stock is just plummeting, when last year he could have been a top-10 pick. Guys were able to really get a good look at him last season, and more questions were answered by his performance last year.” The scout also said the 7-foot-2-inch, 278-pounder, an Associated Press second-team All-America selection, would likely be available when the Celtics pick 30th. Keep in mind that Doc Rivers knows Hibbert very well, since his son, Jeremiah, played at Georgetown the past two seasons before transferring to Indiana.

It would be nice to add a big man like Hibbert behind Perkins, but there’s another player I would rather see the Celtics draft. Nicolas Batum, one of the intriguing French prospects in the draft, was projected as a late first rounder but most likely not available at #30. Batum cut short his workout in Toronto due to getting a reading on his heart that came back “borderline”. His father had suffered a severe heart attack while playing basketball in France when Batum was 2, so perhaps there is a history of heart problems in the family. Now in no way am I hoping this is the case, but for the Celtics’ sake, I hope this scares off a few teams from selecting him making him available to the Celtics at pick #30. The kid has got all the offensive tools you could ask for (NBA Comparison: Rudy Gay) but he still needs work. Still, how much can you expect from a 20 year old foreign kid when it comes to playing for the NBA champs? If he was able to give 7 minutes a game averaging three or four points and gives his all on the defensive end, that would satisfy me for his rookie season.

If it came down to selecting between both Hibbert and Batum, I would say take Batum. We could use another good swingman off the bench and the ceiling for this kid is far higher than Hibbert’s. And who knows, by the time the Big Three end their reign of terror over the rest of the league, maybe Batum would be ready to step in as an all-star for this franchise.

Nicolas Batum

  • Height: 6-8
  • Weight: 210 pounds
  • Age: 19
  • Country: France
  • Draft Projection: Mid to Late First Round

Roy Hibbert

  • Height: 7-2
  • Weight: 275 pounds
  • Age: 21
  • College: Georgetown
  • Draft Projection: Mid to Late First Round

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