NBA Draft Lottery 2020: Projected Order and Odds for Every Team Involved

Blake SchusterAnalyst IIAugust 15, 2020

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum gets ready to announce the order of the picks during the NBA basketball draft lottery Tuesday, May 14, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nuccio DiNuzzo)
Nuccio DiNuzzo/Associated Press

The NBA draft lottery teams are all set for the league's drawing Thursday following the conclusion of Friday's seeding games. 

Only the bottom eight teams, who weren't invited to the NBA restart in Orlando, Florida, remain unchanged. The rest of the lottery teams went down to the final few seeding games and will still require a play-in tournament to determine the 14th team eligible for a No. 1 overall pick. 

This year's lottery will be held virtually because of the pandemic, but the stakes remain as high as ever. 

The Golden State Warriors are searching for another franchise player to help extend their championship window, the Cleveland Cavaliers are hoping to get their fourth No. 1 pick since 2011 and the Minnesota Timberwolves could get their second lottery win in the past five years. 

Here's a look at where each team stands before the ping pong balls start bouncing. 


Projected Draft Order and Lottery Odds

1. Golden State Warriors (15-50); 14.0 percent chance for No. 1 pick; 52.1 percent for top-four pick

2. Cleveland Cavaliers (19-46); 14.0 percent; 52.1 percent

3. Minnesota Timberwolves (19-45); 14.0 percent; 52.1 percent

4. Atlanta Hawks (20-47); 12.5 percent; 48.1 percent

5. Detroit Pistons (20-46); 10.5 percent; 42.1 percent

6. New York Knicks (21-45); 9.0 percent; 37.2 percent

7. Chicago Bulls (22-43); 7.5 percent; 32 percent

8. Charlotte Hornets (23-42); 6.0 percent; 26.3 percent

9. Washington Wizards (24-40); 4.5 percent; 20.3 percent

10. Phoenix Suns (26-39); 3.0 percent; 13.9 percent

11. San Antonio Spurs (27-36); 2.0 percent; 9.4 percent

12. New Orleans Pelicans (30-42); 1.3 percent; 6.2 percent

13. Sacramento Kings (31-41); 1.2 percent; 5.7 percent

14. Boston Celtics via Memphis Grizzlies (34-39) OR Portland Trail Blazers (35-29); 0.5 percent; 2.4 percent

Odds via Tankathon.


The Grizzlies and Blazers will battle it out in a play-in series for the right to claim the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference, with the loser falling into the lottery. If the Grizzlies win one game before the Blazers win two games, Memphis moves on. If not, Portland officially enters the postseason, with Boston getting Memphis' pick if it lands outside the top six.

Unlike the previous few seasons, a consensus No. 1 pick hasn't quite emerged in this year's draft. Instead, there are a number of prospects who could feasibly find themselves selected first depending on who wins the lottery.

That top-tier group features guard LaMelo Ball, guard Anthony Edwards, forward Obi Toppin and center James Wiseman, and each carries significant pros and cons.

Ball is a skilled playmaker but hasn't spent much time on the court in North America lately after he bypassed college to play in Australia's National Basketball League for the Hawks. He would go on to play just 12 games averaging 17 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.8 assists before a bruised foot ended his season.

Edwards was a skilled shooter at Georgia last season who can penetrate off the dribble with ease, but his 29.4 field-goal percentage from three may scare off some pro teams.

Toppin won the Naismith College Player of the Year in 2020 while leading Dayton with 20 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game. He's also a power forward with a limited jump shot trying to break into a league that depends on bigs impacting offenses away from the rim.

Wiseman's game fits that bill, but he also hasn't played against significant competition since withdrawing from Memphis in December to prepare for the draft following an NCAA inquiry into his eligibility. Before leaving the Tigers, he averaged 19.7 points and 10.3 boards.

All four will be watching closely to the lottery to try to get a sense of where their skill sets fit best as their NBA dreams start to become reality.