Miles Bridges, Lonnie Walker IV bring ‘tremendous spirit' to Sixers' workout


CAMDEN, N.J. — The Sixers got a look Monday at two potential fits for the No. 10 pick in the NBA draft. 

Michigan State guard-forward Miles Bridges and Miami guard Lonnie Walker IV headlined the pre-draft workout, which also included Oregon State forward Drew Eubanks, SMU guard Shake Milton, Maryland guard-forward Jared Nickens and Baylor forward Nuni Omot. 

“I thought they came in and had a tremendous spirit,” Brett Brown said of Bridges and Walker. “You saw different things athletically from them both. They made shots. … It’s obviously deeper than just looking at an hour-plus workout. There’s a lot of information that we have to digest. I thought those two guys were good today.”

Walker, a Reading, Pennsylvania, native, is entering the draft after his freshman season. The 19-year-old led the Hurricanes with 11.5 points per game (41.5 percent from the field), along with 2.6 rebounds and 1.9 assists. Walker was named to the All-ACC Freshman Team, All-ACC Academic Team and was an honorable mention for All-ACC honors. 

“[The Sixers are a] very fast-paced team, a defensive team and a pass-first, very unselfish team,” Walker said. “Their style of play kind of fits my style of play. It’s kind of too good to be true.”

[RELATED: Could Lonnie Walker IV be shot creator Sixers need?]

Bridges is a projected lottery pick following his sophomore season, wherein he posted 17.1 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.7 assists. He ranked eighth in defensive rating in the Big Ten. Bridges appreciated Brown’s intensity and he was reminded of his college coach, Tom Izzo. 

“It’s a fast-paced team, [they] play defense, really great on offense,” Bridges said. “I think I could fit in really well with them.”

Being drafted by the Sixers would have special meaning for both players. For Walker, who grew up Pennsylvania, working out on the Sixers' practice court was "very surreal." 

"Always been a Sixers fan," he said. "Growing up, I used to watch a lot of AND1 and my dad is an old-school type of guy. Julius Erving was my first favorite player ever. Allen Iverson was my end-all, be-all, top player; greatest player in the world."

Even though Bridges grew up in Michigan, he had ties to the Sixers miles away. Like Walker (and countless basketball fans), he also admired Iverson's career. 

"The 76ers are my dad’s favorite team," Bridges said. "I watched a lot of them." 

The Sixers will host another local prospect Tuesday. Villanova's Mikal Bridges will participate in an individual workout.

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