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Celtics’ Pre-draft Workouts Offer Fans Glimpse of Possible Picks
The Boston Celtics started out the month of a June with the first of their pre-draft workouts this past Wednesday. It's possible that one of the potential draft picks who came to show off what he can do for the green and white at Waltham, Mass on June 1st might just be the next big name on the Cs' roster. There's no doubt that the team's future is cloudier than it's been in years, and Shaq's recent retirement (although not unexpected) means one more position to fill.
At this point, it's not too far-fetched to wonder whether or not a free agent like Glen Davis(notes) will be wearing Celtics colors next season. If he's not there, the Cs might just opt to replace him with Matthew O'Donnell, who was among the group of big men working out in Waltham. Never heard of the 6-foot-9 Canadian prospect? That's because he's a 322 pound football player.
While I wouldn't hold my breath when it comes to seeing O'Donnell, an offensive lineman, take to the court for the Cs someday, his presence is grabbing headlines. According to his father, the Celtics first got wind of O'Donnell when he became the 15th overall pick in the Canadian Football League last month. "They looked at his numbers and his athletic ability and (decided) it was worthwhile giving the kid a chance." Jim O'Donnell said.
He may not be the likeliest draft pick, but at least O'Donnell decided to show up. Notably absent was Butler's Matt Howard, the Bulldogs star apparently deciding to skip the workouts. Howard is a Lou Henson Award winner, named the best men's basketball player in the mid-majors. He averaged 16.4 points and 7.7 rebounds per game last season.
According to the Boston Herald, Danny Ainge said "When you pick at (No.) 25, sometimes the guys you like think they are going higher." Considering the way the draft is pegged by critics and fans to unfold later this month, Howard may end up with the Cs after all (if they want him), despite his wishful thinking.
Nevertheless, among those who did show up were Temple's Lavoy Allen, VCU's Jamie Skeen, Wisconsin's Jon Leuer, Richmond's Justin Harper, Oakland's Keith Benson, and Old Dominion's Frank Hassell. Leuer, who averaged 18.3 points per game last season, and Lavoy Allen, who averaged 8.6 rebounds last season (college career total of 1,147), might be two to keep an eye on. The next pre-draft workout is set for Monday, June 6th.
Taurus Londono has lived in Massachusetts for over ten years. He became a lifelong Celtics fan during his time at UMass Amherst.
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