Chinese prospect Zhou Qi is one of the most intriguing players in this year’s NBA draft. According to the latest NBA draft rumors, the Boston Celtics are interested in drafting Zhou with the 23rd overall pick.
The Celtics have three first round picks this year: the third, 16th and 23rd overall selections. They have a lot options regarding these picks with the possibility of acquiring a top player via the draft.
On the other hand, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge also hinted that they may draft international players with their picks since they already have a really good roster. They can just add a star via free agency and a couple of role players as they have salary cap space this offseason.
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One of those international players is the 20-year-old Chinese player who is already considered one of the best players in his country. Celtics director player of personnel Austin Ainge revealed in an interview with NBA.com that they are monitoring Zhou Qi.
“I went to China and saw him play. We’ve known about him for a couple of years. He’s probably the third- or fourth-most recognized name in Chinese basketball, so he’s a known commodity, but it was great to have him in today to work out,” Ainge said.
Zhou stands at 7-foot-2 but weighs just 210 pounds, causing some scouts to doubt his ability to bang bodies with bigger players in the NBA. However, he has the skills for the new era of the league as he can shoot the jump shot while also providing excellent weak side defending.
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According to the latest mock draft by USA Today, Zhou is projected to be a late-first round pick. The Celtics could also draft other high-profile international players like Ante Zizic from Croatia and Petr Cornelie from France.
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