It has been a topsy turvy week for No. 1 overall draft pick Markelle Fultz, with a trade at the top of the draft shifting expectations for how his career might play out. Originally slated to join a Boston Celtics team fresh off an Eastern Conference Finals appearance, Fultz will now get to spearhead a rebuild in Philadelphia alongside Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid.
But that wasn’t his first concern when changes were made at the top of the 2017 NBA Draft. The first thing that came to mind? Chicken sandwiches, according to a piece he wrote for The Players’ Tribune.
A lot happened last week. It’s crazy that it’s only been seven days since I got invited to Philly. I found out last Friday morning. I woke up and thought I was going to Boston for another workout with the Celtics.
Then Keith hit me up and said, “New plan. Philly.”
I was just waking up. So I was like, “O.K., cool. Do they have Chick-fil-A there?”
A crispy chicken sandwich for breakfast. It’s kind of like my good luck charm. Keith never got back to me about that important question. So I found out for myself. I googled it immediately.
Philly does have Chick-fil-A. It has six, actually.
Seven if you count the one at the airport. Boston has zero Chick-fil-As, for what it’s worth.
The Sixers had clearly done their research on Fultz by the time he showed up for a workout on that fateful Saturday, because he emerged from his car with Chick-Fil-A waiting for him.
Beyond the food choices, it also sounds like Fultz had a productive meeting with the Sixers brain trust. He expressed his excitement to be part of something fresh in Philly, and despite being the No. 1 pick, he sounds prepared to start from the bottom.
I know a lot of people have beat up on Philly because the team hasn’t been winning a lot. But Coach Brown seems like he believes in growth and development for his players. And when you have that from a coach, it makes the players wanna work that much harder I think.
I’m not going to make a ton of promises right now. I just want to tell you a little about what to expect from me.
I’m coming to Philly to work. I’m coming to be part of the team. I’m coming to add more life to The Process. I’m going to have a rookie mentality — above no one, below no one.
Can the regular season get started ASAP please? You can read the rest of Fultz’s letter to the city of Philadelphia—and its fans—at The Players’ Tribune.