EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — Despite being projected as the top overall pick by the Boston Celtics in next week’s NBA Draft, Washington guard Markelle Fultz completed a solo workout Thursday with the Los Angeles Lakers, who hold the second overall pick.
Fultz called the workout at the Lakers’ practice facility a “family decision,” adding “Never know where I might land, so I just wanted to see how it is out here.” As for his preference on where he’d like to be drafted, Fultz said, “I would like to go one [to the Celtics], but wherever I land is where I go.”
ESPN’s Jeff Goodman told a New England radio station that Fultz didn’t shoot the ball “exceptionally well” during his recent workout with the Celtics. After his workout with the Lakers, Fultz said, “They saw that I worked hard. They saw that I had the mechanics to shoot the ball right and everything like that.”
The Lakers are widely expected to select UCLA guard Lonzo Ball, whose shot mechanics have been largely criticized despite him shooting 55 percent from the floor as a freshman for the Bruins, including 41.2 percent from 3-point range.
When asked to compare himself to other high-profile point guards in the draft, such as Ball and Kentucky’s De’Aaron Fox, Fultz said he respects them but noted they have different games.
“I believe fill in every box on both ends of the floor,” Fultz said. “I think that’s what the difference is.”
Fultz said he’s not sure if he’ll work out with any other teams before the June 22 draft but that he’ll sit down with his family and make those decisions soon.
In terms of being drafted by the Lakers, Fultz mentioned potentially receiving great publicity and building his brand in Los Angeles, selling points that the Lakers have long pitched to prospective free agents but especially now as the team is rebuilding.
“I could see myself playing here,” Fultz said. “It’s a great city, a great team, a lot of history behind this team.”
Fultz said he’s confident that he and Lakers point guard D’Angelo Russell could play well together, saying that each of them are versatile enough to play both guard positions.
Fultz also noted that he could fit in well with Celtics star point guard Isaiah Thomas.
“Also, he was a [fellow Washington] Husky, so automatically, we’ve got a bond there,” Fultz said. “He can play off the ball, I can play on the ball. Either way, I think that would be a great fit too.”
When asked about competing against Ball, Fultz said, “I’m a competitor. So anybody that’s in front of me, I’m going to try to take them out and Lonzo is a great guard. We’re both competing for the same positions, so just stepping out on the court, I’m going to try and beat him in everything I do. If that’s tying my shoe faster or anything. It really doesn’t matter.”