Saturday, June 24, 2017

Markelle Fultz Is Number One; Malik Monk A Steal at Eleven

Markelle Fultz

Thursday night was first round of the NBA draft, and the story receiving the most coverage was the Lakers' selection of Lonzo Ball. I knew a bit more about this year's prospects having watched a fair amount of the NCAA Tournament, but as usual I have not seen most of these players -- even on television.

While running this morning, I listened to Bill Simmons and Joe House dissect and grade the draft.

Simmons's most emphatic analysis was that Malik Monk was a major steal at #11, and that the Kings should have taken Monk just after his Kentucky teammate DeAaron Fox (instead, they traded down).

606. I love listening to Bill Simmons talk about the NBA (I've been doing it for several years now), even though I hardly watch any games. Why do I enjoy listening to him so much? His discussions tend to be quite substantive and sophisticated, but is there something additional that is drawing me in? Is it that Simmons represents an alternate "dream" course for my life, in which I became a famous sports analyst? Is it that I respect and admire his loyalty to his father and long-time friends? It must have something to do with us being near-contemporaries, which enables me to consider his thoughts and life experiences from the perspective of my own.

607. I watched portions of a couple of this years Finals' games (Golden State defeated Cleveland, 4-1), and I was absolutely stunned by how good the players are. Was this series the highest level of basketball ever played?

Here were the first 11 picks from Thursday night...
  1. 76ers: Markelle Fultz (G) - Washington
  2. Lakers: Lonzo Ball (G) - UCLA
  3. Celtics: Jayson Tatum (F) - Duke
  4. Suns: Josh Jackson (F) - Kansas
  5. Kings: DeAaron Fox (G) - Kentucky
  6. Magic: Jonathan Isaac (F) - Florida State
  7. Bulls: Lauri Markkanen (F) - Arizona
  8. Knicks: Frank Ntilikina (G) - France
  9. Mavericks: Dennis Smith Jr. (G) - NC State
  10. Trail Blazers: Zach Collins (F/C) - Gonzaga
  11. Hornets: Malik Monk (G) - Kentucky

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