Likely to play vs. Celtics, Markelle Fultz looking forward to Kyrie Irving matchup

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Likely to play vs. Celtics, Markelle Fultz looking forward to Kyrie Irving matchup

CAMDEN, N.J. -- Markelle Fultz is likely to play in his second preseason game when the Sixers face the Celtics Monday in Boston. 

The rookie is listed as probable after sitting out Friday's matchup because of right shoulder soreness. He participated in the full practice Sunday.

"I feel a lot better," Fultz said. "I've got a lot of energy." 

Fultz said he has been experiencing soreness in his shoulder "for a little bit," including the preseason opener Wednesday. He did not attribute the discomfort to affecting his 2 for 13 shooting performance. 

Fultz put in extra work after practice Sunday, including dribbling drills and spin-move dunks with Joel Embiid. 

The 19-year-old is hoping to match up against Kyrie Irving Monday. He had looked forward to defending Mike Conley Jr. but the Grizzlies point guard did not play. 

"Any chance you get the chance to test yourself against one of the best point guards in the NBA, I love to do that so I can see where I am, see what I need to improve on," he said. 

Brett Brown said Friday he planned to rest JJ Redick on Monday in Boston and could do the same with Robert Covington. Dario Saric is probable to make his preseason debut. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and James Michael McAdoo are also probable. Embiid and Richaun Holmes are out (see story). 

Sixers select Villanova's Mikal Bridges with No. 10 pick in 2018 NBA draft

Sixers select Villanova's Mikal Bridges with No. 10 pick in 2018 NBA draft

The Sixers didn’t have to go far with the No. 10 pick in the NBA draft as they selected Villanova standout Mikal Bridges.

Bridges starred at ‘Nova, where he won two national championships under head coach Jay Wright. The 6-7, 210-pound wing took his game to a new level last season when he averaged 17.7 points on 51.4 percent field goal shooting and 43.5 percent three-point shooting. The Malvern native added 5.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.1 blocks in 32.1 minutes a game for the Wildcats.

“When I was younger, my mom, my dad, my grandparents would always take me to games,” Bridges, whose mother works in the organization, said after his pre-draft workout with the team. “It's really cool seeing what they've been doing and how well-coached they are and how hard they play, how talented they are. It would just be the perfect fit.” 

The Sixers had their choice of wing players at No. 10 with Michael Porter Jr. and Miles Bridges also on the board, the team went with the familiar face in the end.

(More coming ...)

More on the Sixers:

2018 NBA draft rumors tracker: Could the Sixers move down?

2018 NBA draft rumors tracker: Could the Sixers move down?

We’ve spent a lot of time talking over the last few weeks about the possibility the Sixers trade up in the draft, possibly into the top 5. 

But what if they trade down? 

That scenario was brought up this afternoon by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who makes it seem like that No. 10 pick could be in demand. 

If the Sixers trade out of the top 10, it would be pretty surprising based on the chatter leading up to the draft. And it probably wouldn't be a very popular move in the eyes of most fans. But perhaps they're anticipating a scenario where the player they'd take at 10 would be available later. In that case, it would obviously make some sense to trade back and add more value. 

Earlier in the day, a report from The Athletic surfaced that said the Sixers had internal discussions about possibly involving Markelle Fultz in a package to move up and get Michael Porter Jr. in the top five (see story)

The draft begins at 7 p.m. tonight from Brooklyn and Draft Central: Sixers begins at 8:30 on NBC Sports Philadelphia. 

Here’s everything else you need to know about tonight’s draft. 

Top 6
Here's how the top six picks should shake out, according to Woj.

Spurs are listening
A slight update on the Kawhi Leonard drama in San Antonio. 

Perhaps the most interesting part of that is that the Lakers and Spurs haven’t talked about Kawhi yet. That’s a little surprising because many think the Lakers might be the frontrunners to land the disgruntled superstar. 

The Sixers might still have a chance to trade for him. It’s fair to wonder if they’re on that board. 

Buyout for Dwight Howard 
It wasn't all that long ago when Howard was considered one of the top big men in the league and a prized acquisition. Those days are gone. 

Howard will be a free agent soon enough.  

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