The 76ers will reportedly draft Ben Simmons No. 1 overall Thursday, which leaves consensus top-two prospect Brandon Ingram to the Lakers at No. 2.
The Lakers say they’re just fine with that.
Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress:
Ingram is the player the Lakers would have targeted at No. 1 had they won the lottery, sources told The Vertical
On one hand, suuuuuuure.
On the other hand, this puts more pressure on Ingram and the Lakers. It’s no longer enough for him to be the second-best player in this draft. To trust the Lakers know what they’re doing, Ingram would have to be be the best player in this draft. Why not just take your default win and keep moving?
The 76ers got Ben Simmons to work out for them after he planned not to.
Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com:
This is the right move. Simmons – an elite passer for a power forward, tremendously bouncy and athletic – is clearly the top prospect in this draft.
Could he fall short of stardom? Yes.
Is Simmons’ jumper shaky? Yes.
Does his attitude raise questions? Yes.
Will adding another big man complicate Philadelphia’s logjam with Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor and Joel Embiid already signed and Dario Saric potentially on the way? Yes.
But Simmons’ tools demand he go first in this draft. Attempt to smooth the problems and hope for the best. The upside is enormous.
Ben Simmons reportedly planned not to work out for the 76ers (or anyone), but plans change.
Jessica Camerato of CSN Philly:
Two days head of the NBA draft, the Sixers worked out projected top pick Ben Simmons on Tuesday, sources confirmed to CSNPhilly.com.
The 76ers appeared likely to draft Simmons anyway, which would have been the right move. He showed more than enough talent at LSU to warrant being the top pick in this draft.
A workout just helps both sides get comfortable with each other. Simmons might not prefer Philadelphia, but he has minimal recourse. The draft system was collectively bargained between the league and players already in the league. Newcomers get the short end of the stick – little say in where they go and even less in how much they’ll earn if they’re a first-rounder.
The best Simmons makes of the 76ers and vice versa, the better off both will be. This is a step in that direction.
The NBA Finals are over.
Ready for the draft?
A record 18-day Finals and calendar that produces an early draft date has combined to create a historically short turnaround between the major events. The draft is Thursday (June 23), just four days after the Finals with the Cavaliers’ Game 7 win over the Warriors on Sunday (June 19).
That’s the shortest gap since 1978, when the draft was two days after the Finals ended.
Here’s how many days after the Finals the draft was held each year, plotted by date:
There were actually years the draft was held before the playoffs ended. Those are marked in blue.
Bad news, D'Angelo Russell.
After Russell enraged his Lakers by recording teammate Nick Young talking about cheating on his fiancée, Iggy Azalea, the couple has broken up.
Young and Azalea will have to deal with this on their own terms.
Russell will have to handle it on everyone else’s.
The young point guard mostly needs time for the situation to fall out of mind. But this development – the outcome Russell feared – brings it back to the forefront and shows everyone the consequence of his actions. He’ll remain a pariah a little longer now.