DRAFT NIGHT DREAM COMES TRUE FOR HOMETOWN KID….FOR ABOUT 30 MINUTES

PHILADELPHIA, PA

With the 10th pick in the 2018 NBA Draft the Philadelphia 76ers selected Mikal Bridges from the Villanova Wildcats. The pick had more significance than the obvious. We all know Villanova is a college in the Philly area. Not only was this the first time a Villanova player was drafted by the hometown 76ers, but Nova’s Mikal Bridges is also a guy who comes from the Philadelphia area. (Malvern, P.A.) Also, Mikal’s mother, Tyneeha Rivers works for the 76ers, in the team’s HR department. It all seems like the perfect set up for a Cinderella story. By the time this night would end, that dream would be turned into a nightmare. (Not really, Mikal will still be living out his dreams of playing in the NBA next season, just not with his hometown 76ers. I just added “nightmare” because it sounds more dramatic.)

Bridges, his mother, Villanova head coach Jay Wright, and a host of family and friends gathered around, beamed with pride and joy as NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced that the 76ers had selected Bridges with the 10th overall pick in the NBA draft. Bridges must’ve felt as if he was in a dream when he walked to the podium wearing a 76ers hat as he shook the Commisioner’s hand. Next, it was off to do interviews with national and local media and talk about how excited he was to be playing for a team that is clearly on the rise. With the uncertainty of Markelle Fultz’s role on the team moving forward, there was a good possibility that Bridges might not only be playing for a real contender next season, but might also see significant playing time. A lot to look forward to for a young player. A dream come true. Meanwhile, the 76ers organization were on some whole other sh*t. The 76ers likely never drafted Bridges looking for him to play on their squad. Yes, Bridges was a part of the process, but not in the way he probably hoped for.

I think the 76ers still believe Philly may be a possible landing spot for Lebron James or Kawhi Leonard during the offseason search for a superstar free agent signing. The 76ers believe they are one player away from being the team to come out of the Eastern Conference next season. They have a legitimate reason to feel that way too. 1) The young 76ers are really good. 2) The Eastern Conference as a collective is really bad. If there were ever a good time to make a serious run at a championship, that time is now. The 76ers are making moves based on this theory. Sadly, Mikal Bridges didn’t fit the bill with this type of thinking. Drafting him was little more than trade bait.

Bridges was unaware that the hometown squad was already looking to move him as he did his interviews and talked about how excited he was to be a part of the 76ers franchise and play alongside the likes of rising stars Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid. A short time later, the 76ers finalized a trade they’d been working on from the moment they drafted Bridges. He was on his way to Phoenix. He’d been traded for one of the Suns earlier picks, guard Zhaire Smith, and more importantly, an unprotected 2021 first round pick. (A move that makes Markelle Fultz’s future role with the 76ers even more questionable in my opinion) Bridges and his family handled the situation with class as he put on his best fake smile as he was interviewed about the trade. Bridges even went as far as to say how excited he was to be a part of the Suns franchise. That statement surely held a lot of truth to it. I mean, playing in the NBA is many kids dream. Mikal Bridges dreams came true on draft night, but playing for a young rebuilding team like Phoenix vs. playing for your hometown team which is on the rise, is a hell of a big difference. And likely “hella” disappointing. But on the bright side, Mikal Bridges is officially an NBA player. How many people in the world can say that?

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THE 2018 NBA DRAFT LOTTERY TOOK PLACE LAST NIGHT. WHERE WILL YOUR TEAM PICK? CHECK OUT THE TOP 10

CHICAGO, IL

 

 

 

The 2018 NBA draft lottery took place in Chicago before last night’s game-2 Eastern Conference Finals game between the Cleveland Cavs and Boston Celtics. Many teams were hoping for a top-3 draft pick this season after the trash season they had last year, including the host Chicago Bulls. In the end, there can only be one team to snatch that top pick and hopefully grab a young player who will become the new face of the franchise. That team was the Phoenix Suns. Here is the rest of the top 10:

 

  1. Phoenix Suns
  2. Sacramento Kings
  3. Atlanta Hawks
  4. Memphis Grizzlies
  5. Dallas Mavericks
  6. Orlando Magic
  7. Chicago Bulls
  8. Cleveland Cavs (from Brooklyn via Boston)
  9. New York Knicks
  10. Philadelphia 76ers (from Los Angeles via Phoenix)

CELTICS SIGN GREG MONROE

The Boston Celtics just pulled off what might end up being a power move as they look to become the new “beast of the East.” With a group of young talented wing men, a reliable 4/5 in Al Horford, and Kyrie running things, the addition of a quality big man like Greg Monroe could be the final piece to the puzzle that could make the Celtics the team to beat in the NBA’s Eastern Conference this season.

 

 

 

SB Nation (@SBNation) reports, the Celtics have signed former Phoenix Suns big man Greg Monroe to a 1-year $5 million deal. Monroe reached a buyout agreement with his former team a couple of days ago. The Boston Celtics were one of a few teams that had the salary cap space left to scoop up the big man. They wasted no time in snatching up Monroe.

 

 

 

Monroe has played with the Detroit Pistons, Milwaukee Bucks, and most recently Phoenix Suns since the 2015 season. Monroe averaged 16 points and 10 rebounds per game when he was with the Pistons. Monroe’s stock took a tumble after leaving the Pistons, but I believe that had more to do with the teams he went to, their systems, and available playing time, more than Monroe’s talent. Monroe can still put up big numbers in a short period of time when given the opportunity. Boston just may be that opportunity Monroe has been waiting for. The addition of Monroe to the Celtics could mean big trouble for other teams in the East.

ERIC BLEDSOE WANTS OUT OF PHOENIX?

Did the Phoenix Suns star point guard send out an S.O.S distress call via Twitter yesterday? Many seemed to think so when Bledsoe Tweeted “I don’t want to be here.” If he was requesting a trade from the Suns via Twitter, can you really blame him? The Suns are terrible. I’ve seen teams built full of random strangers on the playground who’ve had more chemistry together than the Suns. The Suns sole strategy seems to get the ball and shoot. Don’t matter if you’re open, guarded, or double teamed, just shoot the ball! Everybody looks like they’re out there trying to put up 70 points. I watched two Suns games this season that amazingly happened to be televised broadcast in my area. Two blowouts. I stand by what I Tweeted a few nights ago. “Phoenix is the place where NBA careers go at to die. If you’re traded to the Suns, you might as well just retire now.” Suns ownership seemed to agree with my statement. They fired head coach Earl Watson last night after only three games played so far this season. Firing the coach is a start, but it won’t be enough. The Suns are out there barely playing organized ball. Bledsoe should get out, especially if he wants to win more than 10 games this season. Many teams would love to have him, including his former squad the Los Angeles Clippers. Clipper starting center Deandre Jordan took to Twitter to send out a message that I believe was directed at Bledsoe, telling him to come on back home.