The Smoking Cuban

2022 NBA Draft mock 1.0: First look at the first round

2022 NBA Draft Chet Holmgren Paolo Banchero
2022 NBA Draft Chet Holmgren Paolo Banchero / Joe Rondone/The Commercial Appeal via
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2022 NBA Draft, Boston Celtics
2022 NBA Draft, Boston Celtics / Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

2022 NBA Draft mock #15: Boston Celtics: Ousmane Dieng

Dieng’s raw talent and skill set are impressive. The 18-year-old can handle the ball, make plays, and dictate the pace of a game at 6’8. Last season playing in France, he averaged 12.6 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.4 steals in 29.3 minutes per game.

Dieng is joining the New Zealand Breakers this season as part of the NBL’s Next Stars program that produced the likes of LaMelo Ball and R.J. Hampton. He will have plenty of opportunities to showcase his skills, but he could struggle in Australia.

The biggest knock on Dieng is his weight. The teenager is extremely skinny, and he must add mass this year to vault up draft boards. Right now, Dieng is a player without a position in the NBA. He would be viewed as a long-term high upside project that is at least two years away from making an impact in the league. The only way he changes that view is by putting on the pounds before the draft.

The Boston Celtics brought back Al Horford and Enes Kanter while adding Dennis Schroder, Josh Richardson, and Juan Hernangomez. Brad Stevens left the bench to be the team’s lead executive, and the Celtics are hoping to get back into the top four in the Eastern Conference and make a deep playoff run. If selecting in the mid-first round, they would love to add a playmaking wing with Ousmane Dieng’s potential to their talented young core.