The NBA Draft is two months away, and we won’t know the order of who picks where until the lottery is held on May 19.
But it’s fun to guess which teams might be targeting certain players before then, and we have one report that has the Sixers already settled on someone for their first-round selection.
The thought around the NBA is that the 76ers hope to select D’Angelo Russell in the NBA draft, according to a league executive.
“He’s the guy they want,” the executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Saturday. “That’s the word around the league. You know the Sixers. They won’t come out and say it, but he’s the guy they want.”
The executive said the team might have to nab one of the top two selections at the draft lottery on May 19 to get the former Ohio State combo guard.
The Sixers finished with the league’s third-worst record, which guarantees them a pick of no worse than sixth. They have a 15.6 percent chance of moving up to land the number one overall pick through the draft lottery process.
Even if the Philadelphia brass has put this information out there, there’s little reason to believe in it 100 percent. There’s a lot of misinformation planted in order for teams to position themselves for trades leading up to the draft, and though the Sixers might indeed have an affinity for Russell at this time, where they end up picking will have a lot to do with whether or not he’s the player they ultimately select.
Russell averaged 19.3 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 5.0 assists while shooting 41.1 percent from three-point distance in his final college season at Ohio State. The shooting is what likely has Sixers GM Sam Hinkie intrigued the most, considering it was among the reasons he traded reigning Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams earlier this season.