- Green Street - http://greenstreet.weei.com -

NBA Draft’s Potential Celtics: NC State F C.J. Leslie

As part of WEEI.com’€™s coverage of the 2013 NBA draft, here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be available to the Celtics [1] when they make their lone selection at No. 16.


Position: Forward

School: NC State

Age: 21

Height: 6-foot-9

Weight: 209 pounds

Achievements: All-ACC third team (2013), All-ACC second team (2012), ACC all-freshman team (2011), McDonald’€™s All-American (2010)

Key 2012-13 stats: 15.1 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.0 turnovers, 1.5 assists, 1.2 blocks

What he brings: If nothing else, Leslie, who wrapped up his junior season in March, is consistent on the offensive end, having scored double digits in 31 of his 35 games in 2012-13. Scout.com lists [2] his explosiveness and speed/quickness among his strengths, both of which factor into his adeptness around the basket and help his ability to finish.

There are some concerns, however, that his size/skill set combination may not smoothly translate to the NBA game. Slimmer than a typical power forward, Leslie averaged only 7.3 rebounds per game in his three years at NC State. But NBAdraft.net notes [3] he played a lot of small forward, and Scout.com credits him with greatly improving his jump shot.

Notes: Coach Mark Gottfried‘s arrival at NC State for Leslie’€™s sophomore campaign coincided with increased consistency in the lanky forward’€™s play. ‘€¦ When he played at Word of God High School in Raleigh, N.C., he was teammates with John Wall [4], the first overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft. ‘€¦ Leslie was suspended the first three games of the 2011-12 season for impermissible benefits. ‘€¦ In May 2011, he made news for a few homophobic tweets [5] that he quickly deleted.

Recent articles:

Newsobserver.com: N.C. State’€™s C.J. Leslie rolls with criticism [6]

Yahoo!: C.J. Leslis suffers minor injury to shooting hand [7]

Video: Via the ACC, here are Leslie’€™s official highlights from his time with the Wolfpack [8].