The NBA Draft is the closest thing to Christmas in June, when NBA fans get to look under their tree and see the newest toys and gadgets their team soon gets to play with. Mock Draft Challenge. Make your 1st-round picks here. Sometimes NBA fans know what they're getting well before Christmas-in-June arrives, and they can't wait (see: Anthony Davis, LeBron James). Sometimes fans are furious at their present, but it turns out their owner knew more than they did, and in time the present ended up becoming amazing (see: Kristaps Porzingis).
Pick Player Year / Team 1st 2003 / Cleveland Cavaliers 2nd 2007 / Seattle SuperSonics 3rd 2009 / Oklahoma City Thunder 4th 2008 / Seattle SuperSonics 5th 2010 / Sacramento Kings 6th 2012 / Portland Trail Blazers 7th 2009 / Golden State Warriors 8th 2013 / Detroit Pistons 9th 2009 / Toronto Raptors 10th 2010 / Indiana Pacers 11th 2011 / Golden State Warriors 12th 2013 / Oklahoma City Thunder 13th 2015 / Phoenix Suns 14th 2014 / Phoenix Suns 15th 2013 / Milwaukee Bucks 16th 2011 / Philadelphia 76ers 17th 2013 / Atlanta Hawks 18th 2010 / Oklahoma City Thunder 19th 2010 / Boston Celtics 20th 2012 / Denver Nuggets 21st 2009 / New Orleans Hornets 22nd 2015 / Chicago Bulls 23rd 2014 / Utah Jazz 24th 2006 / Memphis Grizzlies 25th 2014 / Houston Rockets 26th 2008 / San Antonio Spurs 27th 2013 / Denver Nuggets 28th 2009 / Minnesota Timberwolves 29th 2001 / San Antonio Spurs 30th 2011 / Chicago Bulls 31st 2013 / Cleveland Cavaliers 32nd 2015 / Houston Rockets 33rd 2010 / Sacramento Kings 34th 2012 / Cleveland Cavaliers 35th 2012 / Golden State Warriors 36th 2016 / Milwaukee Bucks 37th 2015 / Philadelphia 76ers 38th 2014 / Detroit Pistons 39th 2012 / Detroit Pistons 40th 2012 / Portland Trail Blazers 41st 2014 / Denver Nuggets 42nd 2003 / Orlando Magic 43rd 2004 / New York Knicks 44th 2013 / Dallas Mavericks 45th 2017 / Houston Rockets 46th 2009 / Cleveland Cavaliers 47th 2006 / Utah Jazz 48th 2007 / Los Angeles Lakers 49th 2012 / Orlando Magic 50th 2013 / Miami Heat 51st 2003 / New Jersey Nets 52nd 2016 / Utah Jazz 53rd 2011 / Orlando Magic 54th 2016 / Atlanta Hawks 55th 2009 / Portland Trail Blazers 56th 2005 / Detroit Pistons 57th 1999 / San Antonio Spurs 58th 2016 / Boston Celtics 60th 2011 / Sacramento Kings
best dating nba players 2017 draft -
76ers 6-5 Washington The 76ers move up to #1 and are set to select an elite combo guard to develop next to Simmons and Embiid. Fultz has the size, quickness and talent to be an immediate impact player and in a few years could be a top 5 PG in the NBA.
His smoothness with the ball and elite scoring ability are exactly what the young Sixers need. Kings 6-3 Kentucky Fox is a natural on the court who is a smooth passer, explosive slasher and is very savvy for a young player. He plays with great defensive intensity and does a great job of speeding up the game. He'd be an ideal fit in Sactown, setting up shots for Hield and helping the young bigs get easy buckets. Magic 6-10 Florida State Isaac has a combination of skills, size and athleticism that would be hard for the Magic to pass on.
He's a rock solid defender who can help protect the rim and he can also space the floor with his three point shooting. He doesn't need the ball in his hands to have an impact and he plays a good all around game. T-Wolves 6-3 Kentucky SG isn't a position of need for the Wolves but Monk could be too good to pass up, and he'd provide depth/insurance as LaVine recovers from injury.
Monk would give them another top level athlete who can really play above the rim and is also a knock down shooter. He doesn't have ideal size but his scoring ability is undeniable. Jazz receive Warriors pick, cap clear for Iguodala trade Kings receive Pelicans first round pick, top 3 protected (Cousins trade) Magic receive the lower of Raptors/Clippers picks (Ibaka trade) Raptors receive Clippers pick, Vasquez trade (could go to Magic) Lakers receive #27 from Nets in Brook Lopez trade
Social media has been a-twitter the last few days with big trades and big trade rumors, including pre-draft blockbusters that sent the top overall pick to Philadelphia, D’Angelo Russell to Brooklyn and Dwight Howard to Charlotte. On draft night, however, even more deals went down. Here’s a look at each of those swaps with some quick analysis: Minnesota Timberwolves: Jimmy Butler, the 16th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.
(Justin Patton). Chicago Bulls: Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, and the 7th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Lauri Markkanen). Analysis: It should be fairly obvious why the Timberwolves would make this trade. Butler is reunited with his former head coach Tom Thibodeau on a team that now is one of the most frightening defensive units in the NBA, while Chicago obviously felt it was time to start the rebuilding process by adding a couple of young players in LaVine and Dunn while also moving up in the draft.
It’s a putrid haul for Chicago, frankly, as LaVine is coming off ACL surgery, Dunn was not very good as a rookie, and the 7th overall pick landed outside of the draft’s truly consequential tier of players. Minnesota got a whole lot better through this trade. It’s playoffs or bust for them in 2018. Portland Trail Blazers: The 10th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Zach Collins). Sacramento Kings: The 15th and 20th picks in the 2017 NBA Draft (Justin Jackson & Harry Giles).
Analysis: The Blazers didn’t need three first-rounders, so they consolidated a couple of them to move up and take one of the more interesting young bigs in the draft in Zach Collins.
He’s a stretch big who can defend like a traditional center, but he’s inexperienced. The Kings, meanwhile, added an extra first-rounder to better fill out their thin roster. Justin Jackson is an older rookie who should help shift the culture in Sacramento. Utah Jazz: The 13th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Donovan Mitchell). Denver Nuggets: Trey Lyles and the 24th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Tyler Lydon).
Analysis: The Jazz were deep enough in their frontcourt to sacrifice Lyles as the key chip to moving up and taking one of the draft’s buzziest players in Donovan Mitchell. Utah ended up with the best player in the deal, but it cost them a player who, despite some injuries, has shown a fair amount of promise early in his career. Both teams come out of this deal winners. Memphis Grizzlies: The 35th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Ivan Rabb). Orlando Magic: A future second-round pick (2018).
Analysis: A year ago, Rabb was projected as a lottery pick, so to get essentially the same player a year later in the second round is a good bargain and a fine selection for the Memphis Grizzlies. Cleveland reportedly was very close to trading for the 34th selection and taking Rabb one spot sooner, but Memphis is the team who ultimately ended up with him.
Philadelphia 76ers: The 25th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Anžejs Pasečņiks). Orlando Magic: Future 1st round pick (2020) and 2nd round pick (2020). Analysis: Pasečņiks is a draft-and-stash for Philadelphia, who continues to keep banking future assets as The Process lives on.
Orlando, meanwhile, delays their own first-round pick (which could end up being higher than 25) and grabs an extra second rounder in the process. Utah Jazz: The 28th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Tony Bradley) L.A. Lakers: The 30th pick (Josh Hart) in the 2017 NBA Draft and the 42nd pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Thomas Bryant). Analysis: The Jazz apparently really liked Bradley, a talented but raw prospect out of North Carolina, so they tossed in a second-round pick to convince L.A.
to move down a couple slots. Both teams ended up with the guys they wanted in a low-risk move for both organizations. New Orleans Hornets: The 31st pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Frank Jackson). Charlotte Hornets: The 40th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Dwayne Bacon) and cash considerations. Analysis: The Hornets moved up ten picks in the Dwight Howard deal, only to trade back nine spots later while pocketing some cash.
Golden State Warriors: The 38th pick in the NBA Draft (Jordan Bell) Chicago Bulls: Cash considerations Analysis: The Chicago Bulls apparently felt they had enough young players on their roster and sold this pick to the Golden State Warriors. Bell had been referred to by some as the closest thing to Draymond Green as exists in this draft, so of course he ends up as Draymond Green’s teammate. Chicago blew a tremendous second-round value in what was brutal night for them.
L.A. Clippers: The 39th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Jawun Evans). Philadelphia 76ers: Cash considerations. Analysis: Just in case Chris Paul does leave in free agency this summer, the Clippers bought a first-round talent in the first third of the second round. Evans is undersized but incredibly quick. He’s no Chris Paul, but adding some depth at Paul’s position probably isn’t a bad idea. L.A. Clippers: The 48th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Sindarius Thornwell).
Milwaukee Bucks: Cash considerations. Analysis: Thornwell was one of college basketball’s best players last year, and while four years of college tends to work against draft prospects, it clearly worked in his favor.
Thornwell is built to play in the NBA right now, and all the Clippers had to do was buy him. He’ll be buried on a deep Clippers team, but his talent was worth adding to the mix on a (relatively inexpensive) lark.
Memphis Grizzlies: The 45th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Dillon Brooks) Houston Rockets: A future second-round pick. Analysis: For the second time, Memphis bought a second-round pick, adding Brooks to Ivan Rabb. As far as second-round gambles go, those are two pretty good ones, and it didn’t cost them to much to make the acquisitions.
Indiana Pacers: The 52nd pick in the 2017 NBA Draft (Edmond Sumner). New Orleans Pelicans: Cash considerations. Analysis: It was the last trade of the night, and a pretty quiet one.
Sumner heads to Indy, joining UCLA big men T.J. Leaf and Ike Anigbogu. Last season the Rookie of the Year debate was alive and well with a handful of names. Ben Simmons and Donovan Mitchell dominated the conversation, but players like Kyle Kuzma, Jayson Tatum and Lauri Markkanen received plenty of traction as well. All of these athletes had incredible rookie campaigns and clearly deserved the praise heaped on them. Simmons – as we all know – went on to win the coveted Rookie of the Year award.
Despite certain fan bases sharing their grievances about Simmons’ eligibility, he was clearly deserving of the trophy. All of the aforementioned players are having varying levels of success in their respective second-year campaigns, but by no means have any of them dropped off.
What got lost in the noise of last season was just how many solid rookies were developing their games for this season. While Mitchell and Simmons were already starring for their respective teams, a handful of other players were learning about and taking in life as an NBA player, slowly honing their craft and developing certain aspects of their game.
This season, we’ve already seen a handful of players who have come into their own during their sophomore campaign. Let’s take a look at some of the late bloomers and see how they are attributing wins to their respective team’s records. De’Aaron Fox One of the most surprising players on this list is the second-year player out of Kentucky. Touted with gobs of potential and landing high-up in the lottery, many expected Fox to put up big numbers his rookie year. While he did average 11.6 points and 4.4 assists a night, he struggled to provide any sense of hope for his future.
He shot just 41.2 percent from the field and an even more abysmal 30.7 percent from three. He had a net rating of -10.1, only better than two other lottery picks in Josh Jackson and Malik Monk. Fast forward one year and Fox looks like the front-runner for the Most Improved Player award.
It is truly remarkable how much better he looks this season. It’s not just as if he’s improved certain aspects of his game; he has literally improved every aspect of his game. Fox is now averaging 17.9 points, 7.3 assists, and 1.5 steals a night. He’s doing that on 47.7 percent shooting and, more importantly, 38.7 percent from three.
He now has a positive net rating of 2.8 and is second on the team in scoring. He’s leading the Sacramento Kings in assist percentage, he’s second in usage percentage and third in steal percentage. These numbers are certainly not getting lost. His name is being talked about in high regard throughout the league, with some even pointing to him as potentially the best player from the 2017 draft class.
Bill Simmons had Kevin Durant on his podcast just this last week and said, “He’s a possible All-NBA guy in a couple years.” Durant agreed with the sentiment.
It’s no wonder the Kings are touting the record they are. We are fairly deep into the season already and the Kings are two games above .500.
The surprise play of Fox is a huge reason why. John Collins The second-year player for the Atlanta Hawks is having an incredible year and most people don’t even know about it.
Most of that can be attributed to two things. First, the Hawks are really bad. Second, Trae Young is getting most of the national attention, with him leading the NCAA in both points and steals last season, it is easy to tell why.
Collins is currently second in scoring from the 2017 draft class at 18.6 points a night and he’s doing so with 58.6 percent shooting from the field. He’s averaging 9.5 rebounds a game and even adding 2.4 assists. He’s the only sophomore to average these marks and is on a short list of only nine players league-wide to post them. Of those nine, six are all-stars. His defense isn’t quite where it should be (DRTG north of 109) but much of that can be attributed to the state of the Hawks in general.
Collins clearly has the length and athleticism to be an ideal defender in today’s league. As long as the Hawks continue to re-tool their roster, Collins should develop into quite the force on both ends of the court. Bam Adebayo While Adebayo isn’t incredibly flashy on the offensive end, his defensive numbers have been quite impressive. He’s one of eight players from the 2017 class to post a DRTG below 100 and he’s only one of two that have played more than 20 games.
He’s the only one on the list to surpass 20 minutes a night. Needless to say, Bam is in a class of his own on the defensive end. In players who have played at least 15 games, he ranks first in defensive rebound percentage and seventh in block percentage. Similar to Collins, he is long and athletic so he can guard the wing about as well as he protects the rim.
While his defense is the more impressive part of his game, his offensive abilities are still very much a positive. For one, he posts a positive net rating. He averages eight points a night on 55.2 percent shooting. He’s a plus from the free throw line at 71.3 percent. And on a team with a losing record, he still manages to post a positive 1.3 plus-minus.
Monte Morris Morris’ season with the Denver Nuggets has seemed to age like fine wine. Through mid-November, he was averaging 9.1 points and 3.9 assists on 47.2 percent from the field and nearly 40 percent from three. From mid-November until now, he’s bumped those numbers up to 11.7 points and 4.3 assists on 50 percent from the field and a blistering 51.4 percent from beyond-the-arc. The crazy part about the play of Morris is the fact that he only played in three NBA games total last season.
He spent the majority of his time with the Rio Grande Vipers of the NBA G-League developing his game. because he is attributing in a big way to the injury-riddled Nuggets.
He’s notching almost 25 minutes a night and averaging 48.4/45.3/77.8 splits on the season. He’s a 4.5 plus-minus – second best out of the entire 2017 rookie class – and is posting a ridiculously impressive 6.15 assist to turnover ratio. That leads the entire league by over an entire point!
There are also only four players in the league posting a better net rating, and only one of those players averages more minutes a night. This list of players was really interesting to compile.
You hear about some of them on a nightly basis, but their campaigns were relatively quiet – and in some cases non-existent – during their rookie years. This goes to show that oftentimes players need time to develop.
Even then, there have been plenty of examples of elite athletes, even All-Stars, who have taken longer than two seasons to fully come into their own. As the season goes on, look to see second (and even third) year players continue to improve. Some guys get it instantly. For some, it takes a little while longer. But if teams are willing, and smart enough, to be patient, it can usually pay off to a large degree. Success in the NBA can boil down to one thing really, and that’s opportunity.
Countless players have been placed in situations where it just wasn’t a good fit for them and they’ve struggled because of it only to change teams and flourish.
This season, Derrick Jones Jr. appears to have found his opportunity with the Miami HEAT. It wasn’t always an easy path to the NBA for Jones. Upon arriving at UNLV following high school, an investigation by the NCAA was launched into Jones’ ACT scores. He was initially cleared but later had his scores canceled and was deemed ineligible.
He was suspended for UNLV’s final games of the 2015-16 season and he ultimately decided to enter the NBA draft rather than seek a possible return to college basketball. “Everybody has their own things that they go through in their life.
I got suspended from college for my ACT scores. I got an email saying it wasn’t me, it was the test instructor that took my ACT,” Jones told Basketball Insiders. “At the end of the day, that’s something I had to go through but I don’t worry about that anymore.
I’m at the place where I’m at now for a reason.” And although he’s found the place where he’s been successful thus far, it still didn’t get any easier at the beginning. Despite having a solid freshman season at UNLV where he finished as the Runnin’ Rebels second-leading scorer that year, he went undrafted in the 2016 NBA draft. The Sacramento Kings picked him up for summer league, but a groin injury sidelined him. The Phoenix Suns eventually came calling and signed Jones for preseason.
It was there that he made a big enough impression to warrant the Suns keeping him on the opening night roster. Although he had reached his dream of playing in the NBA, Jones didn’t see much action with the Suns. He spent most of his rookie season down in the G League with the Suns affiliate, the Northern Arizona Suns.
When the Suns cut him last season and the HEAT picked him up, they signed him to a two-way contract and placed him with the Sioux Falls Skyforce. In all, Jones has spent the majority of his time in the NBA down in the G League. Despite that, Jones has always maintained an upbeat attitude. “It was a good experience.
I like going through different things,” Jones told Basketball Insiders. “Ever since I was a kid I’ve had a different basketball experience. That was just one thing I had to go through and it was a good learning experience.” Now in his third year in the league, Jones has finally received his opportunity to be the valuable NBA player he always knew he could be.
He’s become one of the key guys off the bench for the HEAT this season. Jones is averaging a career-best 6.1 points per game and 4.3 rebounds. He’s shooting decently at 45.9 percent from the field, but what’s stood out the most is his improved shooting from distance. He never attempted many three-point shots during his first couple of years in the NBA, and even this season he still isn’t taking them much, but his shooting is up to 32 percent.
Since his early days with the Suns, Jones was looked at as mostly a high-flying athlete who could throw down highlight dunks. He can still do that and has already had some jaw-dropping moments this season, but his improved three-point shot is part of his expanding game that he hopes people will take notice of. “Everybody knows I jump high, I’m an athlete.
But there’s a lot of things to my game that people haven’t seen. In summer league I got to show off a little bit but that’s just a little bit of what I got in my package,” Jones told Basketball Insiders. “I’m not really worried about what other people think about my game or what other people see my game as I know what I can do. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, that’s what I’m going to do.” The HEAT recently returned from a six-game road trip that saw them post a 4-2 record.
During that stretch, Jones was an integral part of the rotation. His energy on the defensive end as well as on the glass was invaluable to the HEAT’s wins. On the road trip, Jones put up 9.4 points and 9.4 rebounds per game in addition to a few highlight blocks.
Against the Los Angeles Clippers and Los Angeles Lakers, Jones had back to back double figures in rebounds with 11 against the Clippers and 14 against the Lakers. In the final two games of the trip, wins over the Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans Pelicans, Jones had double figures in points with 13 against Memphis and 11 against New Orleans.
“I feel like I’m that guy that whenever my name is called, my number is called, I’m going to get in the game and give it 110 percent,” Jones told Basketball Insiders. “No matter how many minutes I get, no matter how much I play, it really doesn’t matter to me. I’m just going to go out there and do what I got to do. At the end of the day, I make sure that I play my heart out. This is game that I love, that’s what I’m giving my team.” The HEAT are currently 13-16 and fighting for one of the final playoff spots in the East, where they sit a game out of eighth place.
Right now, Jones is focused on playing his role and contributing to the team’s success, but he wouldn’t mind being invited back to the dunk contest if the opportunity arises. “I really don’t have any personal goals, but I think going to the dunk contest, obviously I want to win that,” Jones told Basketball Insiders. “I just want to be the player that my team can depend on, on defense or if we need a clutch shot. When I get the ball in my hands, they can depend on me making a shot.
Whatever it takes really, being that player that does whatever it takes to win.” Trade Talk Is Heating Up As the annual NBA G-League Showcase gets underway in Las Vegas today, every team in the NBA will gather under one roof and give teams a chance to casually explore their options as they evaluate minor league talent.
Whenever teams are in such proximity, trade talk is an expected by-product, and there are a few situations to watch. The Magic Are Looking The word in NBA circles is the Orlando Magic are looking for deals. Ideally, anything the Magic do returns a starting caliber point guard. However, there doesn’t appear to be much out there for Orlando, but that hasn’t stopped teams from calling, especially as it pertains to the Magic’s expiring contracts guys.
There has been considerable interest in Magic guard Terrence Ross dating back to last season, even while injured. With Ross scorching the NBA from the three-point line and a sense that he’ll walk in free agency, Ross’ name comes up most frequently from teams that have been poking around the Magic’s roster. recently reported the Magic seem more interest in moving Jonathon Simmons than Ross, although league sources have said repeatedly that Ross would return far more value, even as a pending free agent.
Simmons is an interesting name to watch also, mainly because only $1 million of his 2019-20 salary is guaranteed, making him an interesting addition for a team looking to shed contract dollars next summer. It’s not hard to see the Magic’s biggest roster need is a point guard. The Magic have been linked to the Philadelphia 76ers and former top pick Markelle Fultz, although Magic sources have downplayed how serious or in-depth those talks really were.
The Magic, according to sources, have started doing due diligence on some of the notable would-be free agent point guards, and they do have eyes for both Boston’s Terry Rozier and Brooklyn’s D’Angelo Russell. Rozier is considered the top option, but there is expected to be significant demand for Rozier, if and when he hits free agency. The Magic seem to be willing to deal now, but not at the expense of their future, so this could be an interesting week regarding what gets offered to Orlando with so many teams saying the Magic are open for business.
What’s Cleveland’s Next Move The Cleveland Cavaliers have kept no secret of their desire to move on from J.R. Smith and there seems to be some interest from would-be contenders in landing Smith for a postseason run, and then waiving his partially guaranteed deal this summer. Smith isn’t the only Cavs veteran league source talk about. Recently acquired big man John Henson is believed to be on the move as well.
Henson underwent wrist surgery in early December and is expected to make his return sometime in mid-to-late February. Henson is not in the long-term plan for the Cavs and is eligible to be aggregated in a trade at the trade deadline.
The Cavaliers have listened to offers on forward Kevin Love, but league sources doubted that Love’s contract could be moved in-season, given that it would likely take multiple players to make a deal work. Sources said there didn’t seem to be enough demand to think moving Love in-season was likely.
Typically, NBA teams find more appetite for big-dollar deals in the off-season when they have the roster flexibility to add multiple players or teams into a deal. A New Home For Caldwell-Pope The Los Angeles Lakers seem to be more than open to moving guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. There were reports that the Lakers tried to acquire Trevor Ariza from the Suns in a Caldwell-Pope deal, even though Caldwell-Pope can veto a trade.
The prevailing thought in NBA circles is that Caldwell-Pope is open to a trade mainly because he knows he isn’t in the Lakers’ long-term plans, and that a team that acquires him would get the ability to re-sign him using his Early-Bird rights eligibility based on his current $12 million contract value.
The Philadelphia 76ers and the New Orleans Pelicans are believed to have a significant interest in Caldwell-Pope, so this could be an interesting week for Laker trade talk. One More Guy There is a sense that some of the teams sitting at the top will use this week in Vegas to see if they can obtain “one more guy.” The Houston Rockets are looking for a trade partner to dump off the Carmelo Anthony minimum contract and avoid the double whammy of paying luxury tax on waiving Anthony and then paying tax on signing another player.
The Rockets have also dangled guard Brandon Knight in trade talks, although Knight has returned to playing after several injury-plagued seasons and there isn’t much demand for him. The Rockets seem to be looking for one more notable guy and the Knight contract ($14.6 million this season and $15.64 million next season) could be the salary needed to get Houston a bigger dollar guy.
The Philadelphia 76ers are looking for another wing player, specifically someone that can space the floor. The 76ers have been linked to a few names, but they seem unwilling to part with much to make a deal, so it will be interesting to see what surfaces this week.
The Chicago Bulls are looking to move off forward Jabari Parker and have been working with Parker’s agents to find him a home. His $20 million deal is basically an expiring contract, as the final year is a team option. The wrinkle for the Bulls is they seem unwilling to take back any significant salary into next season, but don’t seem to be holding Parker hostage for a serious return either. Parker is said to have a couple of interested suitors, so a deal to move him out of Chicago could take shape this week if the Bulls are genuinely willing to cut bait.
With the G-League Showcase almost a month early this year, it will be interesting to see if so much proximity, sparks earlier than normal deal. Basketball Insiders will be on the ground in Las Vegas this week, so stay tuned for more trade talk.
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