Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
By JACOB POLACHECK
Kentucky freshmen and NBA Draft prospects De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk have both set workouts with the Philadelphia 76ers this week. The 76ers hold the No. 3 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.
The Sixers confirmed that Monk has an individual workout with the team set for Thursday. Fox will work out for the Sixers this weekend, tentatively Saturday per Keith Pompey. Fox and Kansas’ Josh Jackson worked out for the Lakers on Tuesday. You can watch Fox’s interview here.
The 76ers on Thursday will also host Oregon’s Dillon Brooks and Dylan Ennis, Villanova’s Josh Hart and Darryl Reynolds, Davidson’s Jack Gibbs, and Tidjan Keita of Thetford Academy.
“One, Philadelphia right now is on the cusp of a breakthrough because they’re going to have guys healthy,” Kentucky Head Coach John Calipari told FanRag Sports. “Their guard play is good, but that’s probably an area that needs to be strengthened. And you look at Malik, I think the interest in Malik is because he can play both one and two and can score the ball. With Malik, what people have talked to me about, the teams: ‘We didn’t realize he was as good in pick-and-rolls as he is.’ I laughed and said, ‘They said the same thing about Eric Bledsoe.’ Both of those guys played with guys that were truer point guards than they were (Bledsoe with John Wall, Monk with De’Aaron Fox), even though they both play the position.”
DraftExpress currently projects Fox to go to the Phoenix Suns with the No. 4 pick and Monk to go to the Knicks with the No. 8 pick. Monk, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard averaged 19.8 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists last season at Kentucky, shooting 45 percent from the field and 40 percent beyond the arc.
Fox, a 6-foot-4 point guard averaged 16.7 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 4.6 assists last year in his lone season with the Wildcats.
“Never once did I have to use a board to draw up stuff with him,” Calipari told FanRag Sports about Monk. “I could just tell him, ‘Look, you’re going to come off that screen; I want you to step out, but go back.’ And he’d say, ‘OK,’ and then he’d go do it. A great basketball mind, could pick up things quickly.”
The NBA Draft will be held in Brooklyn at Barclays Center on Thursday, June 22, 2017.
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