Celtics select Deyonta Davis, reportedly trade him to Grizzlies

Wednesday June 22nd, 2016

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The Celtics selected Michigan State forward Deyonta Davis with the No. 31 pick in the 2016 NBA draft, but the team will reportedly trade him to the Grizzlies. 

The Vertical’s Shams Charania reported that Boston would ship Davis to Memphis, and ESPN’s Jeff Goodman reported that Boston traded the No. 31 and 35 picks in exchange for the Clippers’ first–round pick in 2019, which the Grizzlies owned. 

Davis, a 6’11” forward, originally planned to play two years under Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo, but Davis elected to enter the draft after just one season in East Lansing. 

Davis averaged 7.5 points, 5.5 total rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game during his one year as a Spartan. 

• Big Board: Final rankings of the top 60 prospects

Strengths: Davis’s elite shot–blocking ability— using an impressive wingspan and top-tier athleticism—has him positioned to be a potential lottery pick. He was able to finish both lobs and dump offs in traffic during his lone year in East Lansing. He’s an especially tantalizing big man thanks to his quick jumping ability. Davis is one of the youngest prospects in the draft, as well. He won’t turn 20 until December. And while he’s just 237 pounds, Davis has the frame and broad shoulders to easily handle another 15 pounds of muscle.

Weaknesses: Davis’s biggest weakness may be his voice. The big man is strikingly quiet, and centers must be loud enough as the backline of a defense to direct traffic over 18,000 screaming fans. His offense is limited to the paint, and he’s still extremely raw outside of finishing at the rim. While a terrific rim protector, Davis doesn’t really play team defense and will need improvement on that end. With a game fit more for the center spot, Davis measured just 6’9” without shoes at the combine.

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