76ers take Ben Simmons with No. 1 pick in NBA draft

The 19-year-old playmaker from Melbourne is also the third Australian-born player taken first overall, joining Kyrie Irving (2011) and Andrew Bogut (2005).

Simmons, though, was the prize and the large contingent of Philadelphia fans roared its approval as Silver made the announcement. They took him out for two expensive dinners, and he was joined by Russell, Randle, Clarkson, Nance and Anthony Brown one the second night out.

Asked about concerns that he needs to bulk up to compete in the NBA, Ingram said: "I am only 18". O'Neal was the last Tiger selected as the top overall pick when he was taken by the Orlando Magic in the 1992 NBA Draft. I think to just give him the ball in that capacity is borderline cruel.

After the 76ers chose big man Ben Simmons with the top pick, the Lakers eagerly grabbed Ingram as they rebuild from Kobe Bryant's retirement and the worst season in franchise history.

"It's surreal, but you know I'm looking forward to it", the LSU forward said.

Simmons will be coached by Brett Brown, who coached Dave way back in 1989.

The Minnesota Timberwolves used the No. 5 pick on Providence junior Kris Dunn, a two-time Defensive Player of the Year in the Big East who should fit nicely for new coach Tom Thibodeau.

During his brief tenure in Baton Rouge, Simmons averaged 19 points, 11 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game.

"It's important that we don't put Ben in a position where he feels the weight of everything", general manager Bryan Colangelo said at a PCOM press conference Friday.

However, the most common link between most of Australia's players in the world's best basketball league is that they were groomed at the AIS.

Simmons also had academic issues that made him ineligible for the Wooden Award, which is presented to the nation's top college player.

"Not necessarily disappointed but it is not going to stop us from continuing this effort moving forward to try to get this roster put together for the start of next year", he said. Jerry Colangelo was brought in as the chairman of basketball operations and Hinkie eventually resigned in April.

"He's continued that on, hence for a player of his size people are remarking at how skillful he is, and that's been a product of many years of hard work". I have the inner strength that no one knows. "I think he's going to impact the outlook for the organization, the outlook for fans".

Ingram averaged 17.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.4 blocks, 1.1 steals per game and shot 41 percent from the three-point line. Hinkie's plan was to acquire enough ping-pong balls to get the No. 1 pick and build the team through the draft. "I'm excited to get to work".

Almost half the selections in the 30-pick round were worldwide players, topping the 12 global players chosen in the first round in 2013. "But one thing about the league, one thing about all of us...everything starts over for all of us". Simmons is an excellent play maker and rebounding forward. "He's known me my whole life actually".

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