The Philadelphia 76ers have told Ben Simmons that they will make him the No. 1 pick in Thursday's NBA Draft, according to cleveland.com's Chris Haynes. Simmons worked out for the 76ers on Tuesday morning at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer's Keith Pompey.
Ever since the Sixers won the draft lottery, this has been the most likely scenario. Simmons is widely considered the prospect with the highest upside, and Philadelphia is looking for a franchise player. His main competition at the top of the draft is Brandon Ingram, a long and sweet-shooting forward from Duke. Ingram's skills appear to fit better with how the Sixers are presently constructed, so in one way, selecting Simmons would mean that new general manager Bryan Colangelo is carrying on his predecessor vision: take the best player available and sort everything else out later. Long live Sam Hinkie and The Process.
If this plays out as expected, the Los Angeles Lakers will draft Ingram with the No. 2 overall pick and Philadelphia will try to balance its roster with trades. Big men Jahlil Okafor and Nerlens Noel are reportedly available.