It's been widely assumed for awhile that the Philadelphia 76ers will select Ben Simmons with the first overall pick in Thursday's NBA draft. Prior to the draft lottery, there was some talk that Duke's Brandon Ingram might go first instead, but once the Sixers secured the pick, it quickly became clear that Ben was at the top of their list.
Some questions arose when Simmons refused to perform a workout for Philly's coaches and front office, but that's a fairly normal practice that agents lobby for their big-name stars, not wanting them to hurt their stock based on one workout in a gym in late June. In fact, he wasn't working out for any teams.
That changed earlier today. Simmons finally took part in a workout for the Sixers brass, according to Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
76ers president of basketball operations and general manager Bryan Colangelo spoke on the recent development.
Bryan Colangelo on Ben Simmons pic.twitter.com/edeZanPKh4
— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) June 21, 2016
Then, shortly after, Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com reported that the Sixers have made a decision with their first pick, informing Simmons that he's their guy.
This morning Philadelphia 76ers informed camp of Ben Simmons he would be taken No. 1 in NBA Draft, league sources tell @clevelanddotcom.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) June 21, 2016
Not much of a surprise, as noted before. Still, the drama of the first selection on Thursday is essentially gone now, and as a result of their choice, it's assumed that the Los Angeles Lakers will pick Ingram second overall.
The addition of Simmons will be vital to the continuing rebuild in Philadelphia. It's very unlikely that he'll morph them into a possible playoff team in the East overnight, but it's a big part of their new “process.”
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