|NBA Draft’s Potential Celtics: French SG/SF Evan Fournier||06.18.12 at 9:25 am ET|
As part of WEEI.com’s coverage of the 2012 NBA draft, we are profiling all players considered likely candidates to be drafted June 28. The Celtics own three picks: 21, 22 (from the Thunder in the Kendrick Perkins trade) and 51.
Position: Shooting guard/small forward
Team: Poitiers (France)
Weight: 205 pounds
Achievements: 2011 French Pro A Rising Star Award, 2011 French Pro A Most Improved Player
Key 2011-12 stats: 14.0 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 42.5 FG%, 27.7 3P%, 75.4%
What he brings: Fournier is considered the top international prospect in the 2012 draft. A solid but not exceptional athlete, he has terrific shooting guard size and a varied offensive skill set. Though he does not have superior ball-handling skills, Fournier is an effective slasher, and while he doesn’t have great leaping ability, his size, strength and quick first step help him get to the rim. He is also very adept at driving and dishing.
From the outside, Fournier is still a below-average shooter, particularly from behind the arc where he is shooting just 27 percent in France’s Pro A league. Defensively, he has good footwork and positioning and has demonstrated an ability to grab both offensive and defensive rebounds.
According to NBAdraft.net, ‘the trademark to his game is his ability to score clutch baskets. He seems to live for crunch time.’
Overall, Fournier has no major defects to his game and at just 19 years old, his reputation for having an excellent work ethic and willingness to work on improving should boost his draft value.
Where the Celtics could get him: Fournier is expected to be drafted late in the first round, so the Celtics should have a shot at him with their 21st and 22nd picks. Fournier could certainly be an option for Boston as Avery Bradley and E’Twaun Moore are the only C’s shooting guards under contract for next season while the aging Paul Pierce is the only small forward.
Notes: In 2011, Fournier became the youngest player in French League history to score more than 20 points, surpassing Tony Parker‘s record. … He has expressed an interest in playing in the NBA next season and was scheduled to work out with some NBA teams this week.
Video: Here are highlights from Fournier from March, when he was named Player of the Month in the French Pro A league.
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