Are D’Angelo Russell and Ben Simmons the co-franchise players who will lead Los Angeles Lakers into the next era? It could happen. In fact, both youngsters are already dreaming of the future.
Russell and Simmons represented Montverde Academy in the high school circuit few years ago and have remained close friends since. Their desire of teaming up in the pros could be coming true.
Rest assured, there is no guarantee that Simmons gets drafted by the Lakers. For starters, the team needs to hope and pray that their draft pick doesn’t fall out of the top-3. And secondly, they would need to get the first overall pick to guarantee a Simmons-Russell reunion.
Earlier this week, Russell told Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report about their collective dream. “We’re (Simmons and I) real close friends. (When we talk) it’s obvious: ‘Oh, man, I hope you come here (to Lakers).’ It’s obvious. But we talk about a lot of other things.”
Sixers to draft Ingram?
As of this moment, Philadelphia 76ers are projected to get the first overall pick. According to Ding, the Sixers might do Lakers a favor and draft Duke prospect Brandon Ingram. “The Philadelphia 76ers could prefer Brandon Ingram’s shooting anyway,” he wrote. It’s worth noting that Ingram has superseded Simmons at No. 1 in most mock drafts around the country.
According to Yahoo’s latest Mock Draft, Simmons is projected to go No. 2 to the Lakers. “In a draft many consider to have a significant drop-off after the No. 2 pick, the Lakers will be happy to ‘settle’ for whomever the Sixers decide not to draft. It will be interesting to see how the Lakers fit the non-shooting Simmons alongside the ball-dominant backcourt of D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson, but there really isn’t much of a choice here,” reads the report.
A few months ago, Russell compared Simmons to Greek Freak Giannis Antetokounmpo. “I knew he’d be a pro right away. He’s so versatile. He was a guy you couldn’t put into a box. He did everything. He reminds me of (Giannis) Antetokounmpo,” Russell said of his former high school teammate, recalling the incident when Simmons reportedly “ripped the rim down” during one of his first practices at Montverde in 2014.
Simmons’ college career is already over as LSU failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Recently, some have questioned if Simmons possessed “the required intangibles” to be a superstar in the big leagues. However, Russell has no such doubts.
Will Russell and Simmons be reunited in Los Angeles? Is it their destiny?
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