Some of the best NBA rivalries developed over years, as young players eventually grew into superstars. Magic Johnson and Larry Bird’s legendary rivalry was born in college, then transferred over to the NBA. Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett entered the league straight out of high school, eventually blossoming into all-time greats. Now, it appears that Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball could be on the brink of their own personal contest.
The two will forever be linked after Fultz was selected first overall in the 2017 NBA Draft by the Philadelphia 76ers and Ball was taken second by the Los Angeles Lakers.
The rookies are on good terms and don’t show any animosity towards each other, but it will still be a major event when they meet on the court next season. Fultz seemed eager to play against Ball while speaking at a 76ers basketball camp, via Matt Bowler of CSNPhilly.com:
“Me and him are cool,” Fultz said of Ball. “I’m pretty sure we’re going to meet each other during the season. The NBA, I think, is going to do a good job of making that happen and I look forward to it. I wish him the best of luck this season, just like I’m pretty sure he does to me, but it’s going to be good. I’m looking forward to it.”
Ball took home the Las Vegas Summer League MVP just weeks ago, while Fultz was forced out of action due to injury, but both figure to play prominent roles with their teams and be part of the Rookie of the Year race.
While both play point guard, they do so in a very different manner, with Fultz adopting the modern score-first approach while Ball prefers to fire passes all over the court to open teammates. With both the 76ers and Lakers on the rise, we should have plenty of opportunities to watch these two up-and-coming guards compete against each other.