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Winners and losers from the 2018 NBA Draft

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Jun 21, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Mikal Bridges (Villanova) is interviewed after being selected as the number ten overall pick to the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round of the 2018 NBA Draft at the Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The 2018 NBA Draft has come and gone. If you want to know how each team fared, you can check out Zach Harper’s full draft grades here.

Here, we’ll break down the individual winners and losers from the night.

WINNER: Adrian Wojnarowski

Woj was the biggest winner of the night, and it honestly wasn’t even close. After being instructed by his employers at ESPN not to tip picks before they were announced on TV, Woj put on a tour de force of announcing picks without technically announcing them. Using phrases like “tantalized by,” “won’t let ____ pass,” and even “lasered in on,” Woj had fans on Twitter on the edges of their seats to see how he’d “not announce” each pick.

Seriously, if you missed out, please go peep his timeline. It was, in a word, extraordinary.

LOSER: ESPN

You can’t stop Woj, you can only hope to contain him. And on this night, ESPN barely did that.

WINNER: Suits with no socks

Look at this picture. Nary a sock in sight. The shorts-with-your-suit look may not have completely caught on yet, but the no-sock look is officially a thing, and boy was it on display Thursday night.

LOSER: Knicks Fans

It wouldn’t be a Draft without Knicks fans booing their pick regardless of who it is. This is a lose-lose for the fans; either they booed rightly (in this case, it was Kevin Knox) and end up with a bad player, or they booed prematurely (‘sup, Kristaps) and will get Cold Take’d. Either way, not great.

WINNER: Lakers and Cavaliers

In the middle of the dang draft, and with basically no warning or fanfare, LeBron confidant Brian Windhorst reported that The King had already basically narrowed down his free agency to the Cavs and Lakers. It’s impossible to know just how accurate this is, but if it’s Windy, it’s safe to assume he got it right. This got almost no reaction because of the Draft, but expect it to make the morning rounds. It wasn’t quite “LeBron will only go to these two teams,” but it sure sounds like they’re in the driver’s seat, which is a big deal.

LOSER: Michael Porter Jr.

Apparently, the medicals weren’t so good. His Draft stock seemed to go up and down by the minute, but few expected him to drop as far as 14th, where he eventually went to Denver, until about two hours before the Draft. With the talent of a potential top overall pick but a back that may not hold up, it wasn’t a great night for MPJ.

WINNER: Joel Embiid

Even when he isn’t playing, Embiid is winning on Twitter. His tweet about top overall pick DeAndre Ayton and the comps he was getting to Embiid was amazing.

LOSER: Mikal Bridges

Bridges did an entire interview about how excited he was to play in Philly for the Sixers, while wearing his Sixers hat, only to conclude it to news he’d been traded to Phoenix. It’s going to be 115 degrees there on Friday. Not great.

WINNER: The Holiday Family

I don’t care who you are, having three brothers all make it to the NBA at the same time is really freaking cool.

LOSER: Grayson Allen

Let’s hope he doesn’t have Twitter, because if he does, he probably saw fans from every single city start praying he would go anywhere but there. He eventually ended up with Utah, because of course he did. He could turn into a fine NBA player, but on Draft night, nobody wanted to chance it happening with their team.

WINNER: Twitter

Between Woj’s masterclass, Embiid being Embiid, and the lack of any real surprises in the Draft itself, Twitter was the place to be Thursday night. We don’t know how good any of the players selected tonight will be, but we’ll always have the tweets.

Alex Smolokoff began with FanRag Sports as a columnist in May 2013 following his graduation from Tulane University, where he worked as a sports columnist and reporter for the Tulane Hullabaloo. He has served as managing baseball editor since January 2015. A native of Randolph, MA, he now resides in Phoenix, AZ.

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