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LB Mock NBA Draft: Boston Celtics Select Jordan Mickey 28th

The Celtics are in dire need of rim protection. In this scenario, Danny Ainge adds college basketball's leading shot blocker.

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Kelly Olynyk, Jared Sullinger and Tyler Zeller are nice players. At this stage in their careers, none are encouraging options to develop into franchise cornerstone big men, however.

Olynyk's most impactful contribution on an NBA court in his two seasons in the NBA has been tearing Kevin Love's shoulder out of its socket. Meanwhile, Sullinger can't seem to stay healthy enough or in ample game conditioning to consistently play major minutes.

All the above is why many with knowledge of the Celtics' thinking are predicting Boston will attempt to trade into the lottery from No. 16 and select Willie Cauley-Stein. Before even entering the league and still potentially requiring surgery on a foot he injured in March 2014, Trill might be one of the best defensive players in the NBA next season, similar to Nerlens Noel's instant impact with the Sixers a year ago.

In the LB Mock Draft, Boston was unable to grab a rim protector early on, selecting Georgia State sharpshooter R.J. Hunter to fill another huge need. And so, drafting the nation's leading shot blocker this season in LSU sophomore forward Jordan Mickey makes perfect sense for the Celtics.

Mickey led the country with 3.57 blocks per game in his second year in Baton Rouge. He's long and athletic (6'9 with a 7'3.25 wingspan and a 37.5 inch max vertical) and has the foot speed to blow up pick and rolls similarly to Cauley-Stein.

Mickey has been one of the hottest prospects during the pre-draft workout circuit and is fittingly visiting the Boston Celtics on Wednesday. If he makes a solid impression on Danny Ainge and company, Mickey could be returning to Massachusetts on Friday for an introductory press conference.

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