NBA Draft Lottery 2013: Updated Odds and Projected Order
The NBA draft lottery is scheduled for May 21. The odds have been set and the teams should be in the process of putting together their draft boards.
Some team needs are tough to assess without knowing how free agency will play out. But each team will likely have a number of players in mind at their projected draft slot.
Orlando controls the draft at the top, as their pick likely decides the rest of the lottery.
1. Orlando Magic
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 25 percent
The Magic pretty much control the draft here if they get the No. 1 pick (and potentially even if they don't).
They could ignore roster needs and go with the best available prospect, which presumably would either be Nerlens Noel of Kentucky or Ben McLemore of Kansas.
The Magic already have an emerging center in Nikola Vucevic and a 2-guard locked up in Arron Afflalo, making this decision tougher than it should be.
If Orlando wants to address its point guard situation and find a successor for Jameer Nelson, then Trey Burke could be the target.
If Orlando does indeed go best available and take Noel or McLemore, Burke could slide down a few spots, considering Charlotte, Phoenix and Cleveland won't be looking for a point guard.
2. Charlotte Bobcats
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 19.9 percent
The Bobcats will probably be looking at everyone except Trey Burke here.
Nerlens Noel will be an option as a potential centerpiece in the middle. His injury shouldn't be a factor—the Bobcats aren't realistically going anywhere this season, and there won't be anyone else who'll be able to make an immediate impact on the team's record.
Ben McLemore could be a replacement for Gerald Henderson (restricted free agent) if they choose not to bring him back this summer.
Anthony Bennett could be an option as a high-risk, high-reward play, and Otto Porter could be an option if Charlotte is looking to play it safe.
3. Cleveland Cavaliers
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 15.6 percent
There are a number of prospects who can help the Cavaliers based on team needs.
Nerlens Noel would be an option in the middle, with Anderson Varejao coming off a season-ending injury and only one year left on his deal.
Anthony Bennett and Otto Porter would add some much-needed athleticism on the wing and up front. Shabazz Muhammad could provide a scoring presence at the small forward position. Cody Zeller and Alex Len are potential options for post scoring as well.
4. Phoenix Suns
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 11.9 percent
The ideal pick for the Suns would probably be Nerlens Noel, considering how badly this front line lacks athleticism and a player with long-term upside.
Anthony Bennett, another athletic frontcourt player, will also be looked at thanks to his ceiling and ability to pose as a threatening offensive mismatch.
Ben McLemore will certainly be considered if he's still on the board as well, but Victor Oladipo is a more realistic option if the Suns are looking for a guard.
Alex Len and Cody Zeller are also possibilities here.
5. New Orleans Pelicans
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 8.8 percent
The New Orleans Pelicans have three specific needs and will have the chance to fill one of them with this pick.
The Hornets could either go with Trey Burke or Michael Carter-Williams to share time with Greivis Vasquez. They could draft a combo forward to complement Ryan Anderson and Anthony Davis, and go with someone like Otto Porter or Anthony Bennett. And then they could try and address the center position and go with Alex Len or Cody Zeller.
Victor Oladipo could be an option as well, especially if New Orleans decides that Eric Gordon will not be in the long-term plans.
6. Sacramento Kings
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 6.3 percent
The Sacramento Kings can't afford to screw this one up after taking Jimmer Fredette and Thomas Robinson in the lottery in back-to-back years.
Trey Burke seems like the ultimate target here, as the team could surely use a floor general.
But if he's not around, the Kings should be operating in best-player-available mode, especially without knowing how the Tyreke Evans situation (restricted free agent) is going to play out.
They could look to pair DeMarcus Cousins with another big man and target Alex Len and Cody Zeller, or they could look for another scorer and give Shabazz Muhammad a look.
7. Detroit Pistons
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 3.6 percent
The Pistons are one of the few teams unlikely to try and improve up front.
Depending on what they think of Brandon Knight and his role on the team, they could go after a shooting guard like Victor Oladipo or a point guard like Trey Burke or Michael Carter-Williams.
Otto Porter and Anthony Bennett would also offer great value here, although it's unlikely they'll be available.
Shabazz Muhammad is the name to keep an eye on for the Pistons. They need a scorer and a wing after the departure of Tayshaun Prince, and Muhammad would offer both in the middle of the lineup.
8. Washington Wizards
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 3.5 percent
The Washington Wizards made a late-season push, jeopardizing their draft position.
There's no doubt they'll be looking to improve the frontcourt. Guys like Otto Porter and Shabazz Muhammad would be an upgrade at the 3, while Cody Zeller and Alex Len would present more reliable scoring options in the post.
Mason Plumlee would also be a pleasant source for above-the-rim action, as I'm not sure Emeka Okafor or Nene Hilario have much spring left in their legs.
9. Minnesota Timberwolves
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 1.7 percent
The theme on the Minnesota Timberwolves' draft board should be athleticism, because they don't have much of it on the current roster.
Shabazz Muhammad, Victor Oladipo, Alex Len, C.J. McCollum and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will all be looked at as potential options, because of the athleticism they provide at their respective positions.
I'd say Oladipo would be the ultimate target here considering his athleticism, skill set and fan appeal. Muhammad is likely Plan B if he's still left on the table.
10. Portland Trail Blazers
Odds for No. 1 Pick: 1.1 percent
If Portland's pick falls outside the top 12, it goes to the Charlotte Bobcats as part of the Joel Przybilla-Gerald Wallace trade.
Personally, I'd pick Lehigh scoring guard C.J. McCollum as the guy to look at. Eric Maynor is entering free agency and the team lacks offensive firepower off its bench.
Otherwise, the Blazers are likely to operate in best-player-available mode.
Kelly Olynyk and Mason Plumlee are some bigs who could potentially be available. Shabazz Muhammad, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Victor Oladipo are wings who could be around here as well.
11. Philadelphia 76ers
Odds for No. 1 Pick: .8 percent
It's tough to project how the 76ers will attack this draft until we know how they plan on dealing with Andrew Bynum.
However, I'm not sure his presence should matter either way.
You can probably cross off Michael Carter-Williams' name with Jrue Holiday emerging as a star. Otherwise, everyone else should be fair game.
Kelly Olynyk, Mason Plumlee and potentially Gorgui Dieng could be around, as well as Rudy Gobert, the 7'2'' French prospect who's had scouts' attention for the past two years.
Evan Turner's versatility should allow Philadelphia to also target shooting guards or small forwards. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and C.J. McCollum should both get looks as well.
12. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Toronto):
Odds for No. 1 Pick: .7 percent
This pick goes to Oklahoma City as part of the James Harden trade, which was a pick originally acquired by Houston in the Kyle Lowry deal.
I'd have to imagine the Thunder will be targeting either a center or backup point guard. Michael Carter-Williams would seem ideal if they were looking for the latter.
Mason Plumlee's ability to play above the rim would seem like the right fit at center, considering Kendrick Perkins' inability to jump and get easy baskets.
Kelly Olynyk and Gorgui Dieng will also be considered here.
13. Dallas Mavericks
Odds for No. 1 Pick: .6 percent
Dallas has a number of needs, and that's with its current backcourt in place. But now O.J. Mayo will be opting out of his contract and Mark Cuban is unlikely to offer big money to Darren Collison.
Michael Carter-Williams and C.J. McCollum sound like ideal guards the Mavericks could bring in.
They also don't have a center under contract for next season. Kelly Olynyk seems like a logical option because of his size and ability to play half-court basketball.
If Shabazz Muhammad slips, he'll also be a likely target for a Mavericks team that needs a spark.
14. Utah Jazz
Odds for No. 1 Pick: .5 percent
The Utah Jazz have severe backcourt needs they must address this offseason. But depending on how they plan on handling the free agency of both Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson, these needs might change.
Michael Carter-Williams seems like the guy to target here, though No. 14 in the draft might be too late. C.J. McCollum is another option, though he's a strong candidate to make a late push up teams' boards.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope should be there, but he also might be available at No. 21 where the Jazz are projected to pick next.
Utah might go big here with someone like Kelly Olynyk or Isaiah Austin, but it should all depend on what happens before they're on the clock.