76ers get No. 1 pick from Celtics, chance to draft Fultz


The Celtics could be content to continue drafting young players and adding them to a core that has proven good enough to finish first in the East and make it to the Eastern Conference Finals. It's more about preference of player - Philly loves Markelle Fultz's talent and his fit with its developing roster.

We'll see if Ainge ends up using the third overall pick come Thursday night, with Kansas forward Josh Jackson and Duke forward Jayson Tatum the likely draft targets at No. 3, or if he finds additional deals that he likes to help the Celtics in the present. If the pick drops below No. 5, the Celtics instead can claim rights to a 2019 Sacramento first-rounder also controlled by the Sixers.

"We're going to get a player that we like, in addition to some further assets", Ainge said.

The deal is a win-win for both sides.

Boston will receive the 2018 first-round pick of the Los Angeles Lakers - if that selection falls between the No 2 to No 5 range.

"I don't really pay attention to everything that's going on", Fultz said.

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But while Colangelo's shot fired Ainge's way could be a bit of gamesmanship with a rival he's expecting to battle against as the East's next great team, it was more a sign of respect from Colangelo, who admitted that it's hard to do business with Ainge because they know one another so well dating back to their days with the Suns.

Fultz vaulted up to the top of the draft board over the past year and appears to be the flawless complement to Simmons in the Sixers' young backcourt.

For years, Boston Celtics fans have been begging general manager Danny Ainge to reach into his precious treasure chest of valuable draft picks and package them for a star. "We feel like it's a jump-start for us".

It will mark the second straight year that Philadelphia selects first overall. "I'm pretty happy that the players here want me to come here". "We know how good Cleveland and we know how good Golden State is". Now, Philadelphia's starting lineup looks like Ben Simmons, Fultz, Robert Covington, Dario Saric, and Joel Embiid. He shot 47.6 percent, averaged along with 5.9 assists, 5.7 rebounds and 1.6 steals over 25 games during his freshman season with the Huskies, who posted a 9-22 record.

Colangelo refused to identify who the Sixers will select with the No. 1 overall pick, but the presumptive top pick is Washington guard Markelle Fultz.

"We have a much better idea of where we are today than just a few days ago", Colangelo said, "and, again, sitting in the number-one spot, we couldn't be in a better place". Fultz, who went to high school in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, led the Pac-12 in scoring and finished No. 6 among all Division I players.