Every team wants to get the top pick in the NBA draft lottery, although not every team needs it.
The drawing that takes place to decide the top three slots of the NBA draft has made a huge impact in recent history. Over the past decade, franchises like the Cleveland Cavaliers (LeBron James), Orlando Magic (Dwight Howard) and Chicago Bulls (Derrick Rose) lucked out by getting an elite player with the first overall pick.
Although there does not appear to be a superstar-level player in this draft, there are plenty of guys capable of surprising scouts by putting together great careers.
With this in mind, there are a number of teams that desperately need to secure one of the top picks to help turn around an organization after a terrible year. These squads have a lot on the line and cannot really afford to miss out on a top spot.
It was only a few years ago that Orlando had one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference every season. Last year, the Magic earned a playoff spot despite being without Dwight Howard for much of the season.
However, the team was forced to trade the center and the remaining squad put together the worst record in the NBA.
Even worse, the fans began to lose interest, as the team reported a 93.4 percent attendance mark, which is down from 102.1 percent last year (via ESPN). That number is likely to drop even more with another poor season.
This means that the Magic need more than just a player who can help down the line; they need a star who can re-energize the fanbase. A player like Ben McLemore can be a go-to scorer right away and instantly become a fan favorite.
Of course, he will not be available after the first few picks.
Not a lot has gone right in the short history of the Bobcats. Not only have there been a lot of losses, but there is little hope for the future.
From Adam Morrison to Brandan Wright and others, many draft picks have not lived up to expectations and there are few players who can truly be considered a long-term solution. The team could not even lose right, as three wins in a row to end the season hurt its chances at winning the lottery.
The biggest thing the team needs at this point is a high-upside prospect who can at least bring some potential to the organization. Even if that player does not help right away, simply believing that better days are ahead would be a big change in Charlotte.
A prospect that would fit this description would be Nerlens Noel, the athletic center who would quickly become one of the best defensive players in the league. He is still developing on the offensive end and could take a while to reach his potential, but the Bobcats have that time.
Unfortunately, a poor result in the lottery could diminish that hope.
While the Toronto Raptors only have a 0.7 percent chance at getting the top pick, it would be huge if they could land one of the top three.
In a trade for Kyle Lowry, the Raptors gave up their first-round pick in this year's draft. However, it is top-three protected if they are fortunate enough to get one of those slots (via USA Today).
By getting one of the top picks, Toronto can add talent at any number of positions of need. The team can add a scoring threat to go with Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozen or it could add an interior defender to make up for the poor play of Andrea Bargnani.
The team could even look to grab a point guard like Trey Burke to solidify the position for the future.
Then again, if the odds play out as they should, Toronto will get nothing.
|No.||Team||Odds of getting 1st pick|
|1||Orlando Magic||25 percent|
|2||Charlotte Bobcats||19.9 percent|
|3||Cleveland Cavaliers||15.6 percent|
|4||Phoenix Suns||11.9 percent|
|5||New Orleans Pelicans||8.8 percent|
|6||Sacramento Kings||6.3 percent|
|7||Detroit Pistons||3.6 percent|
|8||Washington Wizards||3.5 percent|
|9||Minnesota Timberwolves||1.7 percent|
|10||Portland Trail Blazers*||1.1 percent|
|11||Philadelphia 76ers||0.8 percent|
|12||Toronto Raptors**||0.7 percent|
|13||Dallas Mavericks||0.6 percent|
|14||Utah Jazz||0.5 percent|
*Portland's pick goes to the Charlotte Bobcats if it falls outside of the top 12.
**Toronto's pick goes to the Oklahoma City Thunder if it falls outside of the top three (via USA Today).
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