It is one of the most exciting times of the year for NBA fans, as the NBA Draft takes centre stage. Fans of basketball look forward to this part of the year every 12 months, as it begins the countdown to the start of the new NBA season. It was recently revealed that the new season would be getting underway in December, and the aim for the Boston Celtics next year will surely be reaching the NBA Finals. 

The Celtics were close last season but ultimately fell short on achieving that target after they were knocked out in the conference finals by the Miami Heat. However, Danny Ainge made no secret about the area that the team needed to improve heading into the draft. The president of basketball operations with the Celtics revealed that shooting was the big aspect that the Celtics needed to improve, and that was followed by the draft picks of two highly regarded stars.

Aaron Nesmith

Jan 4, 2020; Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Vanderbilt Commodores forward Aaron Nesmith (24) is called for charging on a play against Southern Methodist Mustangs guard Tyson Jolly (0) during the first half at Memorial Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

It could be argued that the Celtics were the big winners from the draft, as they were able to add quality to the talented roster that they already have. Not only that, but the Celtics were able to add two players that undoubtedly ensure that they have strong shooters. Aaron Nesmith is one of the players that was drafted by the Celtics were able to bring in from Vanderbilt.

The 21-year-old from South Carolina has enjoyed two excellent seasons at college level, and the Celtics were keen to add him to their ranks for the season ahead. There was a higher level of intensity in Nesmith’s second season at college level, as he scored 23 points per game on average, and 4.9 assists per game. He also excelled as a player that was willing to take on the efforts from beyond the arc, and boasted an excellent success rate of .522 for Vanderbilt. He has also averaged a .825 success rate from the free-throw line in each of the two seasons that he played at college level.

Payton Pritchard

Mar 7, 2020; Eugene, Oregon, USA; Oregon Ducks guard Payton Pritchard (3) high fives the fans after defeating the Stanford Cardinal at Matthew Knight Arena. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Payton Pritchard may be a more certain player to feature for the Celtics next season, as he has four years of experience behind him at college level. However, each season has seen progression in his game. There is no doubt that he is ready for the step up to the NBA, and his clinical shooting could see the Celtics emerge as the favourites with the sports betting in Massachusetts sportsbooks. Pritchard was drafted from Oregon, where he enjoyed an excellent fourth season last term.

His averages for points per game, assists and rebounds were all at the highest that they have been during his career. He averaged 20.5 points per game for Oregon, while he added an average of 5.5 assists. Like Nesmith, he also excelled from beyond the arc with a success rate of .415 from three-point range, which was also the best average that he has achieved during his career. Both players could play huge parts for the Celtics heading into the 2020-21 NBA season.