Over the next 30 days, until the NBA draft commences on June 22, there will hundreds to thousands of opinions and conversations about what the 76ers should do with the third overall pick.
The third option seems to be the least desirable among fans right now, as many believe Bryan Colangelo, the president of basketball operations, should use the many assets left to him by former general manager Sam Hinkie to move up to the top spot, currently owned by Boston, to guarantee landing Washington's Markelle Fultz.
Others think moving back in the draft is the proper thinking, as this is a solid group from 1-10 and a good prospect could still be gotten.
And then there's belief in staying and choosing at No. 3 - for the third time in four years – and letting the cards fall where they may.
I've talked to people in Boston who believe the team is totally satisfied staying at the top spot and selecting Fultz, even though he would be joining an already crowded backcourt that features Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley and Marcus Smart. So, let's assume that happens.
The Los Angeles Lakers, provided they don't make a blockbuster move before the draft, will sit at No. 2, and almost every betting man would put green money on president of basketball operations Magic Johnson's taking UCLA's Lonzo Ball. The 6-foot-6 Ball is sort of a poor man's Magic, with terrific size for a point guard, and uncanny abilities to see passing opportunities before they even open and to rebound at the defensive end and start one-man fast breaks. Also like Magic, Ball's outside shooting is suspect, if for different reasons.
Magic simply wasn't a good shooter coming out of Michigan State, masking that deficiency with his ability to get to the rim so well.
Ball isn't as bad a shooter -- it's just that his shooting form, which starts from the righthander's left hip and comes up through his chest, with a very low release point, seems flawed. Many wonder if he'll be able to get his shot off in the bigger, faster NBA. Others say he can create enough separation with his extreme ball-handling to be able to launch.
Is all that enough for Magic to make the obvious pick? You might think so, but I wonder.
Magic Johnson was different from the day he became prominent on the basketball court. Nobody in the late 1970s ever thought of handling the basketball the way he did. No one. And when he entered the NBA, no rookie dared to show the flamboyance that Magic did. He was never one to think inside the box on the basketball court, and when he entered the business world after his retirement, he continued his forward idealism. Johnson's idea was to build Starbucks, movie theaters and shopping centers in underserved urban areas. It took a while to persuade backers, but now Magic has an estimated net worth of about $600 million with business ventures in insurance, television and staffing services. He also has ownership stakes in the Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Sparks.
What does any of that have to do with the Lakers' pick at No. 2? A lot. Magic has led his life to the tune of a Sinatra song ("My Way") and been quite successful doing so. Could it be with everyone saying Ball is the must pick for the Lakers, Johnson will look to go against the grain and put his stamp all over the Lakers in his first draft as the boss?
Will he look to make a trade for Indiana's Paul George, one of the elite players in the league, who grew up in Southern California? Whatever Magic does for his first draft in charge, it just might be bigger than staying at No. 2 and doing what is widely anticipated.
Should he do something that appears to dramatically improve the Lakers right away, like landing George, the impact would be felt by the Sixers in a couple of ways. First, should the Lakers move out of the second pick, who would be left for the Sixers? Josh Jackson? Ball?
Also, if Los Angeles does make a big move this offseason, what does it mean for its 2018 pick that the Sixers own? Might that pick become less attractive, perhaps landing toward the end of the 2018 lottery?