The 2016 NBA Draft featured many talented players, but was widely known as a “two player draft”. With Brandon Ingram and Ben Simmons being the first players selected in the draft, many believed those two would be the only future superstars in the league. That was not the case, however, once Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown stepped onto the floor.
Jaylen Brown had an up and down season at Cal, and was inconsistent. Not known for being much of a shooter, Brown was known for his athleticism and ability finishing at the rim. When he began his career with the Celtics, he showed some potential in the Summer League and flashed some of his potential in limited minutes during the regular season. He still showed struggles with his shooting at times, but has improved recently.
After Avery Bradley went down with a knee injury at the start of the new year, the team would need some rebounding, defense, and scoring in the starting lineup in his absence. That is just what Brown did once he was inserted into the starting lineup. Paired up alongside Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder, Brown showed how impactful he can be.
Averaging just six points a game and three rebounds, many look at his numbers wondering how he was a top three pick. His numbers this season are misleading considering the fact that he started out the season playing very limited minutes. Since he began starting, he has shown his ability to get to the rim and score, as well as an improved shot. His incredible athleticism has also impressed many, as he has been a part of many highlight plays this season.
Although his stats may not show it, Brown has star written all over him. Only 20, Brown has plenty of time to improve his shooting, and already has the build to compete with the best defenders in the NBA. Analysts and experts were judgmental on the pick, as they thought the Celtics reached a little to draft him, but now people will begin to look at him as the Celtics’ franchise player of the future.