The race for the No. 1 pick in the upcoming 2017 NBA Draft seems to be coming down to two players. Markelle Fultz of Washington and UCLA’s Lonzo Ball appear to be the only two players in serious contention to be taken with the first pick in June, and both players believe they’re the best prospect in the draft.
Ball recently said he believes he’s a better player than Fultz which apparently has motivated the Huskies product. Fultz sat down for an interview with Andrew Sharp of SI.com and said the following about Ball’s comments:
“I have a lot of respect for him, and he’s supposed to say that. Anyone that’s your competitor is going to think that they’re better,” Fultz said in an interview with SI Now. “To me, it was just funny, he just motivated me to work harder and be sure I put myself further and further in front.”
Along with his battle for the distinction as the best player in the upcoming draft, Fultz appears to be as confident as they come with the start of his NBA career on the horizon. The 18-year-old guard is setting the bar high for himself once he heads into his rookie season with his sights set on a couple of prestigious awards, via Sharp:
“No. 1 is big for me because I’ve been dreaming about it all my life. I want to come in and kill it. I want to be rookie of the year … honestly, me? I want to be MVP next year,” he said.
With confidence clearly not a problem for the highly-touted draft prospect, the sky is the limit as he embarks on what could be a very successful career in the NBA.
As for where Fultz might land, the top prospect will have to wait until May 16 to get a better sense of the possibilities. The NBA Draft Lottery will take place that day with the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics (via Brooklyn Nets), and Phoenix Suns being the three teams with the best odds to land the top pick.[H/T to ESPN for transcription]