It’s time for the NBA Draft Lottery, where some team will receive a nice reward for an unfortunate season.

But not the Los Angeles Lakers. Their suffering should make a good year even better for the New Orleans Pelicans.

The Pelican is the only playoff team among clubs that can cheer on the lottery when the draw is held on Tuesday night in Chicago.

The Houston Rockets, Orlando Magic and Detroit Pistons have a 14% chance of winning the lottery and being No. 1 in the NBA Draft on June 23 in New York City. Jabari Smith of Auburn, Chet Holmgren of Gonzaga and Paolo Banchera of Duke are among the top players of the college.

The Rockets, Magic and Pistons were young teams that finished at the bottom of the league, the kind of teams that should benefit from the lottery.

Then there are the Pelicans.

They were the same as most other observers in and around the NBA this season, expecting the Lakers to be the winning team, possibly a contender for the championship. But when the Lakers instead failed to finish 33-49, the eighth worst in the league, he left New Orleans able to get one of his chips from the 2019 trade that sent Anthony Davis to Los Angeles.


The Pelicans are chosen by the Lakers as long as they are in the top 10 – and the probability of this is about 99.6%.

Executive Vice President of Basketball David Griffin said none of the Pelicans expected the Lakers to be selected in the top 10 this season, in which New Orleans bounced back from a 1-12 start and reached the playoffs. of under the direction of Brendan Ingram. – purchased in trade with Los Angeles.

“So we’re very lucky, and as is often the case in our business, it’s better to be lucky than good,” Griffin said after the playoffs. “And if you can be both, you can achieve something, and so we’re grateful that we’re a playoff team that chooses the lottery. This is a very unusual thing.

“So we were definitely lucky there.”

That’s what Tuesday is about.

The Pistons were lucky last year when they won the lottery and eventually elected bodyguard Cade Cunningham with a № 1 choice. He then took third place in the rookie of the year vote.


Houston and Orlando also have a lot of young talent and are ready to add to it. All three have more than a 52% chance of getting into the top four.

The lottery determines the four best choices. The other teams that are not in the playoffs, choose in the reverse order of their finish. In addition to the Rockets, Magic, Pistons and Pelicans, other teams are participating on Tuesday: Oklahoma City, Indiana, Portland, Sacramento, San Antonio, Washington, New York, Charlotte and Cleveland.

Instead of 14 teams that missed the post-season, only 13 teams, because “Thunder” owns a selection of “Clippers”, which goes to the lottery in 12th place.

Hall of Fame David Robinson will sit on stage to represent Spurs, a reminder of the type of player that changes the franchise that may be available to lottery winners. The Spurs took Robinson № 1 after winning the 1987 lottery.

As a result, 20 years ago, the Rockets Lottery was dominated by a big man when they chose Yao Ming from China. Now, digging back from the end of the James Harden era, they finished 20-62 this season, the worst in the NBA.


Last year, Houston distinguished itself at No. 2 and took on Jalen Green, who demonstrated many promises as a rookie. Now they may be able to add to their list two talented young players, their own top five and the No. 17 pick from Brooklyn, which they acquired when they defeated Harden in January 2021.

“I think next year we’re going to be a more talented team than this year, and I actually think we’ve been a pretty talented team just in terms of talent,” said general manager Rafael Stone. We were just unusually young. Most likely, next year we will be even younger, but you never know. ”


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