NBA Draft Lottery 2019: 1st-Round Odds and Mock Draft Before the Combine

Steve Silverman@@profootballboyFeatured ColumnistMay 10, 2019

Zion Williamson remains on track to be the No. 1 selection in the NBA draft.
Zion Williamson remains on track to be the No. 1 selection in the NBA draft.Associated Press

There's a huge prize at the top of this year's NBA draft, and winning the lottery might be enough to turn a team into an instant contender.

That's because Zion Williamson is available in this year's selection, and he has the combination of size, power, athleticism, explosiveness and talent to turn any team that wins the lottery into a potential playoff team.

As a result, Tuesday's lottery will be a major event. It will be held at 8:30 p.m. ET in Chicago.


Date: Tuesday, 14 May

Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

Location: Chicago

Television: ESPN

Online streaming: WatchESPN


This year's lottery format gives the three teams with the worst records in the league an equal chance to come away with the No. 1 pick in this year's draft.

The New York Knicks had the worst record in the league at 17-65, followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers and Phoenix Suns at 19-63. All three teams have a 14.0 percent chance of coming away with the top pick in the draft, and a 52.1 percent chance of selecting in the top four.

Each team that did not make the playoffs has a chance to win the lottery, and here's a look at this year's odds, per Tankathon.com.


Team, Regular-Season Record, Top-4 pick pct., No. 1 pick pct.

New York Knicks, 17-65, 52.1%, 14.0%

Cleveland Cavaliers, 19-63, 52.1%, 14.0%

Phoenix Suns, 19-63, 52.1%, 14.0%

Chicago Bulls, 22-60, 48.0%, 12.5%

Atlanta Hawks, 29-53, 42.1%, 10.5%

Washington Wizards, 32-50, 37.2%, 9.0%

New Orleans Pelicans, 33-49, 26.3%, 6.0%

Dallas Mavericks, 33-49, 26.3%, 6.0%

Memphis Grizzlies, 33-49, 26.3%, 6.0%

Minnesota Timberwolves, 36-46, 13.9%, 3.0%

Los Angeles Lakers, 37-45, 9.4%, 2.0%

Charlotte Hornets, 39-43, 4.8%, 1.0%

Miami Heat, 39-43, 4.8%, 1.0%

Sacramento Kings, 39-43, 4.8%, 1.0%


2019 NBA Mock Draft

1. New York Knicks: Zion Williamson, PF, Duke

2. Phoenix Suns: Ja Morant, PG, Murray State

3. Cleveland Cavaliers: RJ Barrett, SG, Duke

4. Chicago Bulls: Jarrett Culver, SG, Texas Tech

5. Atlanta Hawks: De'Andre Hunter, SF, Virginia

6. Washington Wizards: Rui Hachimura, SF/PF, Gonzaga

7. Memphis Grizzlies: Jaxson Hayes, C, Texas

8. Atlanta Hawks (from Dallas): Cam Reddish, SF, Duke

9. New Orleans Pelicans: Sekou Doumbouya, PF/SF, Limoges CSP (France)

10. Minnesota Timberwolves: Brandon Clarke, PF, Gonzaga

11. Los Angeles Lakers: Coby White, PG/SG, North Carolina

12. Charlotte Hornets: PJ Washington, PF, Kentucky

13. Miami Heat: Darius Garland, PG, Vanderbilt

14. Boston Celtics (from Sacramento): Kevin Porter Jr., SG, USC

15. Detroit Pistons: Bol Bol, C, Oregon

16. Brooklyn Nets: Nassir Little, SF, North Carolina

17. Orlando Magic: Romeo Langford, SG, Indiana

18. Indiana Pacers: Keldon Johnson, SG/SF, Kentucky

19. Boston Celtics (from Los Angeles Clippers): Mfiondu Kabengele, C, Florida State

20. San Antonio Spurs: Grant Williams, PF, Tennesse

21. Boston Celtics: Nickeil Alexander-Walker, SG, Virginia Tech

22. Oklahoma City Thunder: Tyler Herro, SG, Kentucky

23. Utah Jazz: Matisse Thybulle, SF, Washington

24. Philadelphia 76ers: Cameron Johnson, SF, North Carolina

25. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Houston): Talen Horton-Tucker, SF, Iowa State

26. Portland Trailblazers: Bruno Fernando, C, Maryland

27. Brooklyn Nets (from Denver): Luguentz Dort, SG, Arizona State

28. Golden State Warriors: Carsen Edwards, PG, Purdue

29. San Antonio Spurs (from Toronto): KZ Okpala, SF, Stanford

30. Milwaukee Bucks: Goga Bitadze, C, Buducnost (Montenegro)


Zion Williamson, Duke

Williamson was a game-changing force from the moment he stepped on the court at Duke. His numbers were excellent during his freshman season as he averaged 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds per game, but they don't begin to tell the story.

The 18-year-old is 6'7" and 285 pounds, and there is a powerful brute-force aspect to his game that makes it nearly impossible to stop him when he is driving to the basket.

However, it's not just power that gives Williamson the ability to take over games. He is exceptionally athletic to go along with his massive strength, and he is a skilled basketball player.

The Duke product has the skill, strength and athletic ability to project a champion's demeanor and he is also quite coachable, per NBADraft.net, in addition to being perhaps the most talented player in the country.

LeBron James, long recognized as the NBA's best player, explained to ESPN's Dave McMenamin the aspects of Williamson's game that he admires.

"What strikes me? His agility and his quickness," James said. "For his size, how strong he is, to be able to move like the way he moves, he's very impressive. I mean, everybody can see the athleticism. That's obviously, that's ridiculous. But the speed and the quickness that he moves [with] at that size is very impressive."


RJ Barrett, Duke

Just like Williamson, Barrett averaged 22.6 points for the Duke Blue Devils along with 7.6 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game.

The 18-year-old has wonderful size for the shooting guard position at 6'7" and 202 pounds, and he can dominate the game with his ball-handling, vision, scoring and ability to set up his teammates.

Barrett played just one year of college basketball, but he carries himself like an experienced player because he has an array of skills that usually take much longer to develop.

The Canadian is much stronger than his frame indicates, and he is very aggressive when he senses any weakness in his opponent. He is hungry to produce and finds a way to finish when he has the opportunity.

Barrett is a strong defender with the ability to guard multiple positions, and he clearly has the ability to turn defense into offense and carry his team on a hot streak.


Stats courtesy of College Sports Reference.