Fultz to join ‘The Process’ in Philly

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    Ben Simmons is a big chance of winning rookie of the year in the NBA. (AP Photo/Kim Raff)

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    The Philadelphia 76ers have agreed to terms with the Boston Celtics, sending their number three pick in the draft – along with a 2018 protected first round pick – gaining the Celtics number one pick in 2017 NBA Draft where they will draft Washington’s Markelle Fultz.

    He was always thought as being the clear cut number one pick, ahead of other notable prospects such as Lonzo Ball, De’Arron Fox and Josh Jackson, except by the Celtics.

    The focus will be on what becomes after this trade. Boston now has the chance use this pick to add to their growing young roster with small forwards Josh Jackson and Jason Tatum being the most likely candidates, maybe even Lonzo Ball if the Lakers decide to go with De’Aaron Fox or Jackson.

    The other option which has been talked about now for months is using this pick along with the many others they have stockpiled away in a trade for Chicago’s Jimmy Butler or Indiana’s Paul George.

    It could be used to move Gordon Hayward to the East from Utah after he signs a max deal with the Jazz.

    If I was Danny Ainge, Jimmy Butler would be my main target and the one I’d be doing anything to get. Butler is a three-time All Star who could be one of the final pieces to help Boston challenge the Cavaliers for the title as the best team in the east.

    He can play the two or the three and is an upgrade on what the Celtics have now with Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder. Paul George seems to have his heart set on going to the Lakers in 2018 as a free agent so I wouldn’t waste trading for George who may only stay a season in Boston.

    Gordon Hayward is an option but the Jazz like the Celtics are a growing team and beating the Clippers in the first round of the playoffs may have given some confidence to Hayward that if he stays and the team improves they can move deeper into the Playoffs, plus also the fact the Jazz can offer Hayward a max contract with more money.

    So if I was Ainge Butler would be target number one and I’d be working to do anything to move him to the Celtics.

    On the other side of the trade in Philadelphia, ‘The Process’ may have just started their own big three.

    Fultz and Simmons – both number one picks – and Embiid, who is a number three pick. Embiid after two years of injury played his rookie season and was the favourite to win the Rookie of the Year until injury struck again, ending the season. He managed only 31 games averaging 20 points, eight rebounds and two blocks in only 25 minutes a night.

    Simmons drew comparisons with a young LeBron James with his playing style and physical attributes. He made the Summer League first team averaging 10.8 points, 7.7 rebounds and 5.5 assists a game and it looked to be he was more focused on facilitating and setting up his teammates, which is a great skill to have for a guy at 6’10. Simmons suffered a foot fracture in training camp which was expected to miss four months, but a slow healing process and complications ruled him out for his entire rookie season.

    Ben Simmons in action

    (AP Photo/Kim Raff)

    Markelle Fultz is the interesting one here. The Celtics had reservations of Fultz after he worked out for them that he lacked team success, and going to the Sixers who have been a losing team for years in the NBA won’t be a major adjustment for him. But adding him with Simmons, Embiid could slowly start to change the success of the Sixers.

    He is a modern day point guard and has no big weaknesses that will get found out in the NBA. His versatility is his biggest strength. He is able to play as a scorer, shooter, playmaker and already has the qualities of a young floor general.

    He can play next a combo guard or a pure shooting guard and at 6-4 with big hands and large wingspan has the ability to also guard multiple positions.

    Fultz like most modern day point guards can shoot the three. He averaged 41 per cent from beyond the three point line in college and can shoot off the dribble as well as play as a spot up shooter. In his one season with Washington he averaged 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists a game while shooting at 50 per cent from the field and 41 per cent from the three point line.

    (AP Photo/Steve Yeater)

    His only question mark, as thought by the Celtics and other draft experts, was with all these stats couldn’t lead his team to a winning record with Washington finishing the season 9-22.

    Now Fultz is there, someone can now run the offence and organise the team properly. Having someone to properly feed Embiid in the offence down low is going to do wonders of Embiid’s confidence and for the team.

    I see Simmons maybe playing a point-forward role, taking control when Fultz is off the ball. The Sixers were full of young and dynamic players last season but no one took control and ran the team.

    Fultz now has that opportunity to leave his own blueprint on the team and run it properly having all these young players working together to move Philadelphia into the Playoffs.

    Fultz, Embiid and Simmons might be the Sixers big three of sorts but it’s the veterans and role players that are really going to help them move up the standings.

    Players like Dario Saric, Robert Covington and Nik Stauskas all will have a part to play down the stretch and with veterans such as Jerryd Bayless and Gerald Henderson helping teach and guide this young team this can be the start of something special for the Sixers and give hope to the Philadelphia faithful who continued to ‘Trust the Process’

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    The Crowd Says (11)

    • June 20th 2017 @ 6:07am
      mushi said | June 20th 2017 @ 6:07am | ! Report

      On the George option for the Celtics it depends on the asking price. The pacers have lost all leverage here, so unless the Knicks want to throw their hat in the ring then you’re going to get lowballed and have to lump it.

      If the Celtics (or the Cavs or Clippers) or can get him cheap, and they get to the finals, then they have a shot at keeping him if he enjoys the 55-65 win ride and the deep playoff run.

      A late first rounder is a gamble at any rate, I’ve rather certainty for the season and gamble on a potential All NBA player knowing I get a few more bites at the draft cherry – it just feels like the best way to spread the risk on known produciton vs time+potential

    • June 20th 2017 @ 6:12am
      mushi said | June 20th 2017 @ 6:12am | ! Report

      On Fultz my worry, like Ingram last year, is if he’s a shooter why can’t he shoot FTs – which is a better long term indicator of shooting form coming out of college.

      But love the trade.

      The sixers need to start getting production from potential so jumping on fit +best player at the same time was worth it

      • June 20th 2017 @ 6:55pm
        Swampy said | June 20th 2017 @ 6:55pm | ! Report

        Agreed. (this is happening too often)

        • June 21st 2017 @ 10:39am
          Mushi said | June 21st 2017 @ 10:39am | ! Report

          Buy canned food and fire arms, the zombie apocalypse is nigh

    • Roar Rookie

      June 20th 2017 @ 10:48am
      Hamish Hutton said | June 20th 2017 @ 10:48am | ! Report

      Trade is perfect, i feel like Philly should chase an experienced former all star at the two or three just to make sure things run smoothly, their young talent is better than anyone else so it worth getting a player on a vet contract to help out those young fellas

    • June 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm
      astro said | June 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm | ! Report

      Surprised anyone is down on this trade. Makes sense for both teams in terms of fit. Philly needs a scoring guard, and Boston is guard heavy and could use the help in other areas.

      If I’m Boston, I don’t go in on Butler. Not that I don’t like Jimmy Butler, but is he the player to spend all these assets on? Boston are playing better than they actually are. In reality, they’re a team of role players with a fantastic coach. Thomas is good, but a liability of defense and can’t be your top guy.

      If I’m Ainge, I sit and wait. My team is fine now and will remain competitive for the next few years. Stevens is great. Jaylen Brown and Pick 3 will improve and be good. The call I’m waiting for is from New Orleans. Davis for a boatload of picks and anyone not named Jaylen Brown or the number 3 this year. That’s the move to make. Convert the stash into an elite player on a rubbish team. Then you’re perfectly set up for a run at the title…and the Warriors and the Cavs should have come back down to earth by then.

    • June 20th 2017 @ 7:02pm
      Swampy said | June 20th 2017 @ 7:02pm | ! Report

      I know it would never happen but the Celtics should trade Isaiah Thomas (back to the Kings) – he will hurt their progression. The playoffs showed how he capped their defensive ceiling badly and they were actually a better team without him.

      • June 20th 2017 @ 10:50pm
        Internal Fixation said | June 20th 2017 @ 10:50pm | ! Report

        Wasn’t he playing injured?

        Steph was injured last year which is often overlooked. Was much better this year when healthy.

        I’d wait to judge Thomas when healthy.

        • June 21st 2017 @ 5:35pm
          Swampy said | June 21st 2017 @ 5:35pm | ! Report

          Yea he was – most likely mentally as well as physically.

          That is still a moot point however as the Bulls, Bullets and Cavs abused him – consistently putting him in pick and rolls and finding the man he was guarding. Thomas is 5’7″ – he is just a liability defensively at that height.

        • June 21st 2017 @ 6:00pm
          Mushi said | June 21st 2017 @ 6:00pm | ! Report

          Thomas has been a speed bump his entire career.

          I feel bad saying it, because he works harder than most, but height can’t be coached. Most players can get their shot off against him with little concern

    • June 20th 2017 @ 10:55pm
      Mike Julz said | June 20th 2017 @ 10:55pm | ! Report

      What a catch by 76ers

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