Michael Carter-Williams: Playing for Celtics ‘would be a blessing’
|05.28.13 at 9:05 pm ET|
Even the most trusted experts can’t agree on where Syracuse guard Michael Carter-Williams will go in next month’s NBA draft. While many forecast the Hamilton, Mass., native as a top-10 pick, ESPN.com’s Chad Ford slotted him to the Celtics at No. 16 as recently as three weeks ago.
‘I don’t really pay attention to any of the mock drafts,’ Carter-Williams told WEEI.com’s Ben Rohrbach on his Green Street podcast. ‘At the end of the day, they’re all pretty much wrong anyway.’
That’s why the point guard was caught off guard when the Boston Herald’s Steve Bulpett asked him at this month’s NBA scouting combine about playing for the Boston team he grew up rooting for on the North Shore.
‘I kind of want to get away and play somewhere else,’ he told Bulpett.
Given some time to mull the possibility of playing for his hometown C’s, Carter-Williams sang a different tune on Rohrbach’s podcast this week.
‘If I was drafted by the Celtics, I’d be just as happy as I would being drafted by anyone else,’ said the 21-year-old. ‘It’s a great place. It’s been home to me. It would be a blessing to play there. I’d be real excited. I guess the question caught me off guard. That’s how I really feel. I’d be happy to play for them as well as any other team.’
While a bevy of teams interviewed Carter-Williams at the combine, the Celtics were not one of them, and Danny Ainge has not yet reached out to him about a potential workout. If the 6-foot-6, 185-pound floor general’s self-evaluation is any indication, he would fit in quite nicely as backup to All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo.
‘I think I’m smart out there, and I make most of the right plays,’ he said when asked about his strengths. ‘Defensively, I think I would be great, and I’m working on my shot, making it more consistent — just being a positive asset to the team is something that I think I’m able to do.’
During the podcast, Carter-Williams touched on just about everything: Jim Boeheim‘s loyalty; cold Syracuse winters; 2012 Celtics picks Fab Melo and Kris Joseph; a heartbreaking Final Four loss; and former AAU teammate Nerlens Noel — his good friend who seems to be the only thing NBA draft experts can agree upon.
‘He’s a great player, especially on the defensive end,’ Carter-Williams said of the likely top overall pick. ‘He’s a game-changer. He’s a great kid, and he can just flat-out play the game. He needs to improve offensively, but that will come. He gets a lot of easy baskets from offensive rebounds or alley-oops, and he’ll develop some post moves. He has a lot to learn, and I think that’s great. He has a big upside, so the sky’s the limit for him.’
So, what’s the ceiling for Carter-Williams? You’ll have to listen to the podcast for some clues.