Amidst the action-packed Playoffs, this year’s downscaled NBA Draft Lottery gave some air time to teams who aren’t currently in the bubble. Front offices, players, and fans followed closely as the 2020 Lottery Order was routinely revealed by Mark Tatum. And, as always, some were thrilled, while others left very disappointed.
Timberwolves Secure Top Pick
For the second time in just six years, the ping pong balls fell Minnesota’s way. After winning the NBA Draft Lottery in 2015 (and going on to select Karl Anthony Towns), the Timberwolves once again have found themselves with the first overall selection. But with no surefire prospect available, virtually nobody knows what General Manager Scott Layden will do. Will it be Anthony Edwards? LaMelo Ball? James Wiseman? Someone completely different? We’ll have to wait another month and change to see.
Bulls, Hornets Get Lucky
In this year’s surprise of the lottery, Charlotte Hornets each moved up from eighth to third overall. They had just a 19% chance of finding themselves in the top 3, according to ESPN. Also, the Chicago Bulls made a leap of their own, going from seventh to fourth. Their chances of landing a top-4 pick were 32%, per USA Today. Both teams are now in a position to select valuable pieces for their respective rebuilds.
Knicks Fall Short, Again
The woes continue for the Knicks. With the sixth-best odds in the lottery, New York was hoping to pull off a miracle like the Pelicans did last year (who, along with the Grizzlies, jumped the Knicks). They quickly learned that such would not happen, as they fell from sixth to eighth. Scott Perry will be happy with whoever he lands, but barring a major trade, LaMelo Ball won’t be wearing blue and orange next season.
Cavs, Pistons, Hawks Drop
The Cavaliers have been known to have lottery luck, but the past two seasons have not provided any. After losing out on the Zion sweepstakes a year ago, Cleveland plunged from second to fifth during this lottery. Also falling were the Detroit Pistons and the Atlanta Hawks. Both fell two spots -– the Pistons from fifth to seventh, and the Hawks from fourth to sixth.