The outcome was inevitable, but now it's coming to fruition: LSU's Ben Simmons has stated his intent to enter the 2016 NBA Draft, according to ESPN's Jeff Goodman. Rejoice, Sixers fans.
Hardly earth-shattering -- Ben Simmons told ESPN he is headed to the NBA: https://t.co/kWpTDZOF4P— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) March 21, 2016
Goodman's intel comes on the heels of last week's Adrian Wojnarowski report on Simmons' link to LeBron James' agency, Klutch Sports. An interesting tidbit from that Woj piece (bold emphasis mine):
Simmons' older sister, Emily Bush, has been a marketing/branding employee of Klutch since 2014. She is based in Scottsdale, Ariz. Her hiring came shortly after James and Paul started recruiting Simmons as a potential future client.
Within the basketball industry, it has been understood that Klutch has been the only real pro representation that Simmons has considered. Simmons, a native of Australia, has been the subject of a serious courtship by James, Paul and Klutch Sports since attending the LeBron James Skills Academy in 2014.
Family ties seem to litter Simmons' path to the association; his godfather's presence on the LSU coaching staff was a major factor in his decision to play there, and the timing of his sister's hiring at his soon-to-be agency is eyebrow-raising.
Regardless, go get your money young fella. Here's what I want to know: Would you select Ben Simmons with the No. 1 overall pick?