The Boston Celtics selected 6'4" guard Marcus Thornton out of William and Mary with the 45th pick in the NBA Draft. The name will certainly resonate with Celtics fans, as Danny Ainge just traded away Marcus Thornton earlier in the season for guard Isaiah Thomas. However, this Thornton is known for his speed, which will add another element to the Celtics backcourt.
Thornton is 190 pounds, but leaves defenders behind him with his quickness. Thornton is a seasoned collegiate player which would be refreshing as most NBA hopefuls go into the draft after only one year in school. For his collegiate career, Thornton averaged 17 points, three rebounds and two assists per game. During his senior season, Thornton was able to average three assists per game, which shows an improvement in his court-vision. For his collegiate career within the three-point line, Thornton shot at a 46 percent clip, which is impressive given that he is a guard and not a big man who constantly hangs around the basket.
It'll be a challenge to get any playing time with how crowded the Celtics backcourt has gotten, and Thornton will more than likely see himself in a D-League uniform for most of the year. Thornton shot 40 percent from the three-point line in the 2014-2015 season, while also hitting on 83 percent of his free throws.
Boston has developed a pretty athletic backcourt, one which can grow together and become very successful. It's clear Boston was trying to get some scoring guards in this draft because they used the 28th overall pick on Georgia State guard R.J. Hunter, who can knock down a shot from anywhere on the court.
While it's a pick no one saw coming, Thornton will be able to challenge Boston's young guards in practice and provide competition for a roster spot come training camp.