2018 NBA Draft Lottery Primer: How It Works, Date, Time, TV Channel, Odds

Fourteen teams will participate in the 2018 NBA draft lottery drawing Tuesday night.  The winner will have the right to select DeAndre Ayton, the prize of this year’s draft.  With the lottery around the corner, here are the basics you need to know…

How it works:  Under the current rules, only the top three picks are decided by the lottery, and are chosen from the 14 teams that do not make the playoffs. The team with the worst record, or the team that holds the draft rights of the team with the worst record, has the best chance to obtain a higher draft pick. After the top three positions are selected (from the lottery slotting system), the remainder of the first-round draft order is in inverse order of the win-loss record for the remaining teams, or the teams who originally held the lottery rights if they were traded. The lottery does not determine the draft order in the subsequent rounds of the draft.

When: The lottery is Tuesday, May 15, at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Where to watch: The event will air on ESPN.

Odds for each team via our friends at Tankathon:

Tidbits you should know:

  • The Phoenix Suns, Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks have the best odds of getting the No. 1 pick.
  • The 76ers get the Lakers’ pick if it lands at No. 1 or Nos. 6-14. If the pick falls Nos. 2-5, it goes to Boston and the 76ers get the Kings’ 2019 first-rounder unprotected.
  • The Celtics get the Lakers’ pick if it lands Nos. 2-5. If the pick goes to the Sixers, Boston gets the better 2019 first-rounder between Sacramento and Philly, protected for No. 1. (If either pick lands No. 1, it goes to the Sixers and the Celtics get the worse pick).
  • The Pistons keep their pick if it lands in the top four, otherwise it goes to the Clippers. If Detroit keeps its pick this year, it remains top-four protected until 2021, when it switches to unprotected.
  • For fun, if the Chicago Bulls do get the top pick in the draft, I will jump into Lake Michigan wearing Ayton’s jersey (if that is who they pick).

**Trade info via ESPN.

The Big Lead