Maybe it’s the fact Josh Jackson is the best small forward in the 2017 NBA Draft Class. Or maybe its the dearth of small forwards available at all. But Josh Jackson sure as heck is a very intriguing prospect. So much so, that now rumors are surfacing he could have moved past both Lonzo Ball and the Celtics are considering selecting him first overall.
Before we get too entrenched in this thought process though, this feels like the typical last minute posturing that goes on prior to draft night. Celtics GM, Danny Ainge is known for pulling stunts like this. The truth is Ainge is probably planting these seeds in an effort to get teams to pick up the phone to offer trades in exchange for the top draft pick and access to a transformational talent in Markelle Fultz.
— Hashtag Basketball (@hashBasketball) June 15, 2017
None of this diminishes the talent of Josh Jackson, who is a stud in his own right. But to suggest the Celtics would select him over Fultz makes almost no sense. First of all, Jackson represents a player much of the same ilk as Boston’s 2016 rookie Jaylen Brown. Let’s just assume this is jockeying by Ainge with hopes the Bulls (Jimmy Butler), Jazz (Gordon Hayward) or Pacers (Paul George) might bit on the carrot he’s dangling to nab a proven star in exchange for the top draft pick.
Position: Small Forward
Age: 20 years, 3 months
Statline: 16.3 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.7 steals, 1.1 blocks
College: Kansas (freshman)
Home Town: Southfield, Michigan
DraftExpress: 3rd overall prospect
NBA DraftNet: 2nd
Scott Howard-Cooper nba.com: 3rd
The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor: 3rd
CBS Sports: 5th
Basketball Insiders: 3rd
Hoops Hype: 3rd
Jeremy Woo SI.com, The Crossover: 4th
Josh Jackson is a top notch energetic athlete with unlimited potential. In the current era of the NBA, someone of Jackson’s ilk who can guard multiple positions, be slotted into various roles and has the potential to excel on both sides of the hardwood is a highly desirable asset.
Jackson’s defensive chops are already well above average. His freak athleticism…