76ers

Josh Hart drafted in 1st round, goes to Lakers; undrafted Kris Jenkins reportedly joins Wizards

Josh Hart drafted in 1st round, goes to Lakers; undrafted Kris Jenkins reportedly joins Wizards

Josh Hart heard his name called, while Villanova teammate Kris Jenkins did not.

Hart snuck into the first round of Thursday night's NBA draft, going 30th overall to the Utah Jazz. However, the Wildcat is headed to the Los Angeles Lakers, via a trade.

While Jenkins went undrafted, it looks like he'll have a shot with an NBA team. Jenkins will join the Washington Wizards this offseason to compete for a roster spot, according to a report by NBA.com's David Aldridge.

After winning the national title as a junior with Villanova, Hart collected plenty of accolades in a standout senior season. The 6-foot-5 wing was named a consensus first-team All-American, Big East Player of the Year and took home the Julius Erving award as the top small forward in the country.

For the 32-4 Wildcats, Hart, a Silver Spring, Maryland native, averaged 18.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 steals per game, while shooting 40.4 percent from three-point range.

"I'm my biggest critic," he said last week after a pre-draft workout for the Sixers. "I drive myself as much as I can. I demand perfection from myself."

As Hart travels west, Jenkins, on the other hand, will head home for his NBA opportunity. The 6-foot-6 forward, beloved for his buzzer-beating three-pointer to win Villanova its 2016 national championship, is from Upper Marlboro, Maryland. He worked out for the Wizards in early June. He also worked out for the Sixers on Tuesday.

"It's a blessing," he said after his session with the Wizards, via the Washington Post. "You always root for the hometown team, you always want them to do well. Honestly it's humbling to be in this position, to grow up in this area, to have some games here and play college ball here and then come back and work out for the Wizards."

After flirting with the NBA draft process following their title-winning season, both Hart and Jenkins decided to return to school for their senior campaigns.

They both took to Twitter on Thursday night following the draft — Hart in excitement, Jenkins more in a humorous manner.

https://twitter.com/Smoove2you_/status/878109738629611521

Sixers' Elton Brand, Matisse Thybulle and Tobias Harris protest in Philadelphia, encourage activism

sixers_matisse_thybulle_tobias_harris_protest.jpg
@Sixers on Twitter

Sixers' Elton Brand, Matisse Thybulle and Tobias Harris protest in Philadelphia, encourage activism

Philadelphians on Saturday flooded the streets in protest of racism and police brutality following the death of George Floyd last week. The sheer volume of the protesters was powerful.

Among those in attendance were Sixers forward Tobias Harris, who recently penned a strong personal essay on acknowledging and addressing systems of racism, rookie Mattise Thybulle, and general manager Elton Brand. 

The Sixers shared several photos and video from the protest on social media. Thybulle and Brand wore shirts with the words “I can’t breathe!,” which Floyd said as police officer George Chauvin was kneeling on his neck, and which Eric Garner said in 2014 as he was being choked by NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo. 

Harris’ shirt had the face of civil rights leader Malcolm X on it and the phrases “No sell out!” and “By any means necessary!” Thybulle held up signs that said, “Vote” and “We all have a voice — use it.”

“It’s always good to be around this many great people who are striving for unity and striving for people to have equality,” Harris said.

Raptors point guard and Philadelphia native Kyle Lowry walked alongside Harris and Thybulle. 

The Sixers organization standing behind those protesting and actively seeking to amplify their voices is significant. The team on Saturday also retweeted a post by Glenn Robinson III with information about a fundraising campaign that his non-profit organization, Angels Are Real Indeed (ARI), is launching.

ARI, which seeks to “help fathers become better in fatherhood, and help families without one,” will fundraise in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, Robinson announced. 

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Why is there a basketball hoop traveling through Philadelphia during protests?

Why is there a basketball hoop traveling through Philadelphia during protests?

Over the last week, you’ve likely seen, read about, participated in or experienced in some way protests against racism and police brutality following the death of George Floyd.

You might also have noticed a basketball hoop rolling around Philadelphia. 

NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Marc Farzetta recently talked with Philadelphia native Stephania Ergemlidze, who’s responsible for the traveling games of 1-on-1.

“Basketball is the one way I know how to spread love and I know how to bring people together,” Ergemlidze told Farzetta, “so it was a no-brainer.”

Ergemlidze said that she was cognizant of not wanting to detract or warp the messages of protestors. Philadelphians gathered on Saturday for the seventh straight day in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

“That was something I was very, very nervous about,” she said. “What way can I do it where I’m not actually distracting from the protests? My goal was not to distract from the protests. My goal is to amplify it and show the positive sides of things, because right now I feel like they’re sharing a lot of negatives, like rioting and looting, but there’s also a lot of peaceful protesting going on.”

You can watch Ergemlidze’s interview with Farzetta in the video above. 

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