Despite some confusion, Villanova’s Mikal Bridges is not related to Michigan State’s Miles Bridges. Some college basketball fans have wondered whether the two are brothers, but the two forwards come from different families. Mikal grew up in Philadelphia, and now plays down the road for the Wildcats. Mikal has an older brother, Eric Bridges (26), along with two younger brothers: Jack Bridges (16) and Korey Bridges (13).
Miles grew up in Flint, Michigan, but went to high school in Huntington, West Virginia. Like Mikal, Miles stayed close to his hometown committing to play for Michigan State. Miles has one sister, Tara Rushing.
Miles and Mikal are likely to be linked together for the next several months as they are both (assuming they declare) fighting to be one of the top forwards taken in the NBA draft. In Heavy’s latest mock draft, Mikal is projected to go No. 9 while Miles goes a few spots later at No. 11.
Mikal has improved every year at Villanova, and his 2017-18 numbers are up in nearly every major statistical category. Mikal is averaging 18 points per game, up from 9.8 points from a season ago. His three-point percentage (44.2 percent) is also nearly four percent higher than his 2016-17 percentage. Mikal fits the three-and-D prototype NBA teams are looking for, meaning he is a two-way player who can lock down opponents on defense while being a threat from long-range on offense.
Miles is a sophomore who opted to return to East Lansing for another season despite being a likely lottery pick in the 2017 draft. Mikal is a junior who looks to have played himself into being a 2018 lottery pick.
Miles’ family was recently under the spotlight after a Yahoo report listed his mother, Cynthia Bridges, as someone who accepted gifts from an agent. The Yahoo report claimed Bridges’ family had received a $400 payment in addition to a $70 dinner. Miles denied the allegations, but the NCAA did require he make a $40 charitable donation after it was revealed family members went to dinner with a separate agent without his knowledge.
Michigan State’s coach Tom Izzo spoke with ESPN about how he learned Miles may have been considering coming back after his freshman season.
“So freshmen carry the bags,” Izzo told ESPN. “Everybody piles on Miles because he’s the star … and I said, ‘Hey, Miles, want to know what the bad news is for you? Next year you’re going to get screwed because you’re going to be carrying someone else’s bags [in the NBA].’ I start laughing, and he just looks at me and doesn’t say nothing. So a couple of weeks later, I said something similar. And he just says, ‘Coach, why you always trying to get rid of me?’ And honest to god that was the first time I said, ‘What is he doing?’ It had never even occurred to me.”
Mikal slots in as a small forward at the next level, but Miles NBA position is a bit more up in the air. He could spend time at both the three and four. If both players declare, it will be interesting to see which Bridges hears his name called first in the 2018 NBA draft.
Source: Heavy Sports