ESPN analyst Fran Fraschilla likes Murray’s NBA ceiling

Jamal Murray (Vicky Graff Photo)

Jamal Murray (Vicky Graff Photo)

Q. Celtics have a potential obviously to land one of the top two picks, which I guess the first two picks are pretty obvious. But if they land three, that kind of puts them in a predicament of, do you take a guy like Bender, or maybe Buddy Hield, who is maybe most NBA-ready. That third player outside of the top two, what kind of prospects — who is on that list, do you think, which might be the third guy that we like and what do you think of Buddy Hield and his NBA potential?


ESPN ANALYST FRAN FRASCHILLA: I think my gut feeling is, given where the Celtics are and where a number of teams are thinking right now, that Bender is going to be in the five to seven, eight range. That’s just my own opinion, but obviously a very good long-term prospect.

In that third spot, you’re talking about guys who could make an instant impact because of their experience, and that would be Hield, Dunn, Murray, in that order, in my opinion. Poeltl and Ellenson are in that mix, as well.

But I think in Buddy Hield, that you have a guy who not only is a great shooter, but makes tough, contested shots because he has great footwork. He’s a product of four years of just being in a gym; you combine it with his athleticism and he’s ready-made to help a team right away.

Kris Dunn is similar but a different position. He’s likely to be the best point guard in this draft. He’s got NBA size, strength, ability to pass the ball, older, mature, and then the third guy that I think will be in that mix is Jamal Murray, only 19 years old, but way mature beyond his years. Anybody who watched him in the Pan Am Games last summer, as an 18-year-old, playing against a FIBA-level of player; not quite the NBA, but high-level, physical, mature players, he was dominant, really, and he dominated the SEC this year.

He’s a point guard who had to play off the ball this year because of Tyler Ulis; a lead guard, point guard, scoring guard, however you want to say it. And the beauty of Jamal Murray, as opposed to those other two guys, is there is more ceiling because he’s at least a couple years younger than both.

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