The NBA Lottery can change an organization's path over the next decade. Landing within the lottery means an unsuccessful season, of course, but things can change quickly. For example, Dallas landing Luka Doncic third overall now has them in the playoff picture. Memphis was in the lottery for the last two years, and all of a sudden have a core built for the future with Jaren Jackson and Ja Morant. Some teams continue to find themselves in the lottery after poor decision making, hence the Chicago Bulls, who have been constantly in the top ten for picks in the last few seasons but have failed to develop their talent.
How The NBA Lottery & Simulator Work
In the NBA, the draft order is not chosen based on the record. There is a lottery system that the teams who do not make the playoffs enter into the lottery where the odds are higher for teams with the lowest win percentage. Things have changed a bit as the top three teams with the worst record all have 14% of getting the first pick. Leaving the draft order up to the fall of a lottery ball feels unfair, but that is what we have to deal with. Our NBA Lottery Simulator tool crunches all the odds for you and spits out a projected draft order. As you can see for 2020, the Golden State Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Cleveland Cavaliers have the three worst records in the NBA and have the best odds of gaining the number one overall pick.
As you look through the tool, you can see the order based on the record and win percentage. With tanking being a strategy that teams try and hide, you can also see how they did over the last ten games of the season to see if they really put the tank on. Each team also has designated odds for the top three picks, which you can see how the team's shape up. Once you hit the run lottery simulation button, you will see a change in the projected lottery order. The top four teams are featured up top, and the table is where you can see the full order of the lottery draft. The change column will show you where teams moved in comparison to the original projection of their pick.
Lottery Team Needs & Targets
Looking at the Golden State Warriors, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Minnesota Timberwolves first, all have specific needs that don't match up with each other. Golden State is going to have it easy as they will have a few top names to choose from. The center position is rather weak for the Warriors, but they will likely continue to play their small ball and get another scoring guard with Anthony Edwards out of Georgia. Any other team in the first overall pick, they are likely taking LaMelo Ball. Cleveland or Minnesota would gladly take Ball as both could use the point guard. Killian Hayes is the other name, who is a point guard out of France. He is projected to go in the top five and Atlanta is a team that could pair him with Trae Young or use him as a bench player.
Bigs are not as highly rated in this draft, although Obi Toppin and James Wiseman. Toppin fits in Minnesota if Ball is not available, and Edwards is gone. They need someone to play next to Towns, and they will likely see if their more recent drafted guards can step up. Wiseman was once projected as a number one overall pick. He has also been linked to Golden State, given they need a center. However, a team like Charlotte or Detroit could be in the running for him. Charlotte especially needs some help at the center position as they have failed to develop a quality center over the last decade.
New York continues to surprise us with their offseason moves, and the draft is going to be key for them to try and find another name to play with RJ Barrett and build for the future. The point guard is a big need for them, and Tyrese Haliburton is the name that will be there if they land outside of the top five. He comes from Iowa State and has been linked to a few teams in the top ten. He would also fit in Phoenix, who could use more guard depth behind Ricky Rubio and Devin Booker. Haliburton has shown the ability to hit from three and be an efficient playmaker.
NBA Lottery FAQ
When Is The NBA Lottery Event?
The NBA Lottery Event is scheduled for Tuesday, August 25th, 2020. This event is the drawing of the draft order, where you will see who gets the top pick for the lottery. This is not followed on the same day by the NBA Draft.
When Is The NBA Draft?
On Friday, October 16th, the NBA Draft is scheduled to be held. It is televised on ESPN. The date is subject to change due to Covid-10 throwing a wrench into the NBAís plans and restart of the 2019 season.
How Many Lottery Picks Are There In The NBA?
There are 14 lottery picks in the NBA, and these are the teams who did not make the playoffs, while the rest of the 16 teams have their order based on the team record. The 14 lottery picks are decided by lottery balls.
How Does The NBA Lottery Work?
The non-playoff teams are put into a draw that is based on records. The odds of a higher pick are in a teamís favor if they have a poorer record. The top three teams with the worst record all have a 14% chance of getting the #1 pick.
Who Has Best Odds To Get the First Pick In NBA Draft?
The Golden State Warriors, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Minnesota Timberwolves have finished the season with the three worst records in the NBA. With new rules for the lottery, each of these teams has a 14% chance to get the first pick in the draft.