Here’s hoping Danny Ainge did his homework

We will hear for weeks/months/years about the New Orleans Pelicans and their NBA Draft lottery strike, Zion Williamson.

The one-year Duke University phenom is the marquee man in what has universally been characterized as a three-man draft.

The Boston Celtics? Like most every moment of the last 23 months, since being ousted in the Eastern Conference finals by LeBron, found themselves on the short end, picking at 14, 20 and 22.

Or do they?

If recent, and not so recent, history has told us anything, the NBA Draft is the ultimate duck shoot.

And we don’t have to go all the way to Sam Bowie being taken ahead of Michael Jordan or Joe Barry Carroll being selected ahead of Kevin McHale.

I mean, look, I’m a Zion fan. But the top pick overall does not mean instant superstar.

Not by a longshot.

Are you sold on Markelle Fulz or Ben

Simmons?

Karl Anthony Towns is a catchy name, but in four seasons he has one playoff win. Not one series win. One win.

Andrew Wiggins or Anthony Bennet? Well, you can get Wiggins for a song these days, and Bennett is out of the league after four seasons and a career 4.4-point a game average.

Those are the five overall No. 1 selections from 2013-2017. I did conveniently leave out Phoenix’ Deandre Ayton (2018), whom I happen to love.

But back to the lecture at hand.

New Englanders still seethe at the thought of Danny Ainge picking Kelly Olynyk at No. 13 overall in 2014. Two picks later, Milwaukee dragged Giannis Antetokounmpo at 15.

I think we all see how that one has progressed.

The bottom line is as much as it’s so easy to say you have to be high in the lottery there are gems to be culled later in the round.

Paul George went at 10 in 2011.

James Harden was a No. 3 and Steph Curry went at No. 7.

Nikola Jokic was a second-rounder in 2016!

That’s your all-NBA first team for 2019.

Celtics’ fans, as badly as you have been kicked around lately, Thursday night represents opportunity. But it’s on Danny Ainge, and he’s been colder lately than this southpaw on a Vegas craps table.

Celtics fans need a break. Here’s hoping that Danny’s Thursday night maneuvering get the job done.

STRAY SHOTS

Am I the only one annoyed by Tom Brady bragging about his workout with suspended Josh Gordon?

Something tells me this is Brady’s way of attempting to annoy Roger Goodell.

Hey Tom, the kid you’re looking for is N’Keal Harry, you know, you’re first-round draft pick. Gordon’s return is a pipe dream. Let’s deal in reality. …

Phew, thank goodness. David Ortiz, still laid up in good condition at Mass. General after being shot in the back, wasn’t the actual target of the professional hit financed by a major drug kingpin.

It was meant for the guy he was having drinks with.

Like I said, phew! …

After watching the $121 million Minnesota Twins “battle” the $240 million Boston Red Sox for three key games this week, I am now positive that the entire AL Central, of which the Twins lead by a whopping 9.5 games, should be relegated to the Triple-A International League.