It’s easy to see that the 76ers miscalculated in the 2017 NBA draft.

Intent on selecting Markelle Fultz, they moved up two spots to choose him with the first pick on June 22, 2017. It’s a move that the Sixers will never be able to live down, especially now that Jayson Tatum is a first-team All-NBA selection and the Boston Celtics are facing the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals.

They delivered the No. 3 pick and a 2019 first-round pick to Celtics for the honor of selecting Fultz. Boston ended up taking Tatum at No. 3 that year and picking Romeo Langford at No. 14 in 2019. Langford was sent to the San Antonio Spurs in February as part of a package for guard Derrick White, who has been a major contributor off the bench for the Celtics.

The trade might go down as the worst in Sixers history. The Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers, who picked hometown favorite Lonzo Ball second overall, had no intention of drafting Fultz out of the University of Washington. As a result, the Sixers surrendered the 2019 first-rounder for nothing because Fultz would have been available at No. 3.

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Tatum, who wanted to play for the Lakers, had a strong predraft workout for the Celtics. At the time, however, the belief was that the Celtics wanted Fultz. But that all changed after Fultz struggled during his predraft workout with Boston.

“After my workout, I remember one of the [Boston] scouts came up to me and said, ‘That was a great workout. I’m excited for you. But we got the No. 1 pick, so we’re not going to pick you,’” Tatum recently said to reporters. “He still works for the Celtics now, so I [mess] with him all the time.”

Even if Fultz was selected third, his tenure in Philadelphia still would be remembered as a major disappointment. He had shooting problems and missed considerable time before he was shipped to the Orlando Magic on Feb. 7, 2019. The Sixers got Jonathon Simmons, whom they traded to the Washington Wizards for cash at season’s end, along with a 2019 second-round pick, and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 2020 top-20 protected first-rounder.

The Sixers shipped the second-rounder to Boston on draft night in 2019 in the trade that brought Matisse Thybulle. Then they used the 2020 first-rounder to select Tyrese Maxey.

Maxey was a steal at No. 21 and is one of the league’s rising stars. Meanwhile, Thybulle is a two-time second-team All-Defensive selection, but must improve offensively.

So the only sure thing the Sixers got in return for Fultz is Maxey. Maxey is solid, but Tatum is one of the NBA’s elite young talents and the Eastern Conference finals MVP.

In addition to being a three-time All-Star, the 24-year-old is a two-time All-NBA selection and averaged career-highs of 26.9 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 4.4 assists this season. Tatum is also averaging 22.0 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 8.3 assists through three games in the NBA Finals.

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Fultz, however, has played in only 131 games over a combined five seasons with the Sixers and Magic. That’s an average of 26.2 games per season. He played 33 games as a Sixer.

He returned to the Magic lineup against the Indiana Pacers on Feb. 28 after another lengthy absence. Fultz missed 14 months after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers Jan. 6, 2021.

But no matter what cards Fultz was dealt in Orlando, it couldn’t match his disappointing time with the Sixers.

Fultz averaged 7.7 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists in two seasons with the Sixers, and shot only 41.4% from the field and 26.7% from three. Those numbers and Fultz’s right shoulder saga ultimately ended his tenure in Philly.

The team seemed tired of the drama and conflicting statements about Fultz’s health, which dominated media reports off the court as his poor production received full attention on the court.

During much of his tenure with the Sixers, there were questions about whether a shoulder injury caused Fultz’s shooting struggles. The Sixers sent Fultz to several prominent doctors, but none of them found anything that would hamper his shooting motion. Sources have long said Fultz’s shooting woes were mental, that he had the yips and that the shoulder injury was not a factor.

Still, the Sixers maintained that Fultz’s poor shooting was the result of, at first, his shoulder woes, and later a scapular muscle imbalance. Perhaps they were protecting Fultz from the scrutiny they thought he would receive. Maybe they were protecting themselves from the scrutiny they would likely receive from having traded up two spots and surrendered a future first-round pick for a player with a mental block. Or it could have been both.

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At the time, many said the situation would blow over, and Fultz would regain the shooting form that made him an All-American in both high school and college. Instead, Fultz and his troubles became a national curiosity and he fell out of the team’s long-term plans.

Their decision to move on was understandable considering how confusing things were during his time with the Sixers.

However, Tatum’s emergence and the confirmation that the Celtics weren’t going to draft Fultz anyway is a reminder of the Sixers’ mistake.