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NBA Draft’s potential Celtics: Florida F Chandler Parsons 06.20.11 at 1:42 pm ET
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Chandler Parsons is one of the most clutch players in this draft class. (AP)

WEEI.com continues to provide daily insight and analysis on the 2011 NBA draft. This is one in a series of profiles of players who might be available for the Celtics to select with one of their two picks (25th and 55th overall).

Chandler Parsons

Position: Forward

School: Florida

Height: 6-foot-10

Weight: 221 pounds

Stats: 11.3 ppg, 7.8 rpg

What he brings: Parsons has an NBA build and an excellent midrange game. He knows how to use screens, has impressive court vision for a forward and is an unselfish player, almost to a fault at times. At times he served as a “point forward” for coach Billy Donovan. The former Gator also rebounds very well for his position.

Parsons is one of the better pressure players in this year’s draft class.  His most notable late-game shot came against North Carolina State on Jan. 3, 2010, when he netted a 75-foot 3-pointer to beat the Wolfpack in overtime.

Defensively, he has mediocre foot speed and will have trouble staying in front of some of the quicker 3s in the league. He also is a poor free throw shooter. He shot just 55.7 percent from the foul line his senior year.

Where the Celtics could get him: Second round

What they’re saying: “Parsons should receive major first-round consideration after pre-draft workouts. At the Chicago Combine, the Florida small forward measured just under 6-10 and tipped the scales at 220 pounds. He owns high basketball IQ, all-around skills, deep range on his jumper, and adheres to the team concept. These attributes were clearly on display Tuesday morning where Parsons enjoyed a solid workout and could move up draft boards as the June 23 draft approaches.”  — Timberwolves beat writer Jonah Ballow.

Notes: Parsons was named the 2011 SEC Player of the Year.

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NBA Draft’s Potential Celtics: Maryland F Jordan Williams 06.18.11 at 10:30 am ET
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Jordan Williams entered the draft after two years at Maryland. (AP)

WEEI.com continues to provide daily insight and analysis on the 2011 NBA draft. This is one in a series of profiles of players who might be available for the Celtics to select with one of their two picks (25th and 55th overall).

Jordan Williams

Position: Forward

School: Maryland

Height: 6-foot-9

Weight: 247 pounds

Stats: 16.9 ppg, 11.8 rpg, 1.4 bpg

What he brings: Williams is a hustle player with a wide frame. The Torrington, Conn., native is an exceptional rebounder, finishes well in transition, and always is the first on the floor for a loose ball.

His jumper needs work, but he has a good hands and a soft touch down low. If he can improve his conditioning, as well as his stroke, Williams could become an immediate contributor next season, especially if Glen Davis takes his talents elsewhere.

Where the Celtics could get him: First round

What they’re saying: “In Jordan’s situation, I believe he needs another year. … There’s still things to do in terms of a jump shot, in terms of getting better athletically before you hit that next level. Because we all watch the NBA, and you see who’s playing out there. I mean, those guys are just some of the greatest athletes in the world.”  — Recently retired Maryland coach Gary Williams

Notes: Williams adjusted his diet after his sophomore year. He used to eat a McDonald’s McGriddle every day before class, according to The Washington Post.

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NBA Draft’s Potential Celtics: Wisconsin F Jon Leuer 06.13.11 at 11:56 am ET
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Jon Leuer is a big man with some shooting range. (AP)

WEEI.com continues to provide daily insight and analysis on the 2011 NBA draft. This is one in a series of profiles of players who might be available for the Celtics to select with one of their two picks (25th and 55th overall).

Jon Leuer

Position: Forward

School: Wisconsin

Height: 6-foot-10

Weight: 228 pounds

Stats: 18.3 ppg, 7.2 rpg

What he brings: Leuer possesses a potent inside-outside game. With a growing arsenal of post moves and a high basketball IQ, he rarely forces bad shots. He lacks the size and strength to get good position on the block at the NBA level but has developed a respectable perimeter shot.

Leuer also is a capable ball-handler. He may not be able to beat his defender to the rim on a consistent basis, but he’s more than capable of getting his man going backward and taking the pull-up jumper. Leuer also has range that extends beyond the 3-point line.

His slender build and mediocre athleticism also presents a defensive liability. Leuer needs to become more explosive to hold his own against the elite forwards in the league and has shown improvement in his pro workouts, according to scouts.

Where the Celtics could get him: Second round

What they’re saying: “He is an extraordinarily skilled guy for a guy his size, particularly on the perimeter. He handles it, goes to the basket strong and certainly shoots it with range. … This is a guy who has shown time and time again he knows how to score. And he knows also how to be able to play some defense on the perimeter despite being 6-10. … I think he’s got some skill and I think he is worth a strong look in the first round.”  — College analyst Len Elmore

Notes: Leuer started playing basketball in high school as a point guard, according to the Wisconsin athletics website. He has a workout scheduled with the Celtics on June 1.

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NBA mock draft: Celtics eye next Jordan? 05.24.11 at 10:11 pm ET
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Kyrie Irving is turning pro after one injury-shortened season at Duke. (AP)

With only four teams still competing in the postseason, the majority of fans are counting down the days until June 23 and the NBA draft. This year’s class is not expected to be strong, but there is a slew of European talent, a handful of hit or miss “project” players and more Morrises than you can shake a stick at.

Duke freshman Kyrie Irving appears to be the consensus No. 1 pick despite playing just 11 games for the Blue Devils. Arizona’s Derrick Williams likely will be taken second, but by whom? Timberwolves general manager David Kahn is expected to shop that selection.

Kentucky’s Enes Kanter measures at a monstrous 6-foot-11, 261 pounds. However, he has yet to play in the United States as the NCAA declared him permanently ineligible, citing benefits from his Turkish Basketball League team.

Who will take the risk and select BYU sharpshooter Jimmer Fredette? Who will be Sacramento’s potential last first-round pick? Who will the Celtics select? All that and more in our first NBA mock draft.

1. Cleveland Cavaliers

Kyrie Irving, Duke, Fr., PG, 6-2, 180

The Cavs finally won something. It’s a shame there are no players of LeBron James’ caliber in this draft class. Irving has arguably the highest ceiling talent-wise, and he fits Cleveland’s needs for speed and ball-handling much better than the only other reasonable candidate, Derrick Williams.

2. Minnesota Timberwolves

Derrick Williams, Arizona, So., SF/PF, 6-9, 241

An athletic high-flier, Williams is more than just a powerful dunker. He has great basket awareness and finishes at the rim as well as anyone in this class. The T-Wolves frontcourt is already packed with Kevin Love, Michael Beasley and Darko Milicic. However, Williams is simply too good to pass up at the No. 2 spot whether it’s by the Wolves or a trade partner.

3. Utah Jazz

Brandon Knight, Kentucky, Fr., PG/SG, 6-3, 185

With Deron Williams shipped off to New Jersey and Irving off the board, Knight is the obvious selection. A well-rounded offensive player, Knight is able to get to the rim at will, knock down mid-range jumpers, and extend his range beyond the arc. He’s a capable rebounder and creative passer, whose st0ck rose with his performance in the NCAA tournament. The Jazz have a veteran point guard with a similar skill set in Devin Harris for Knight to learn under.

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