NBA Lottery Results 2021: Full Selection Order, Analysis and More

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJune 23, 2021

Oklahoma State guard Cade Cunningham during an NCAA college basketball game against Oral Roberts, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020, in Stillwater, Okla. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Sue Ogrocki/Associated Press

Cade Cunningham might be calling the Motor City home very soon after the Detroit Pistons won the 2021 NBA draft lottery.

Detroit Pistons @DetroitPistons


Detroit finished with the NBA's second-worst record (20-52), which gave the Pistons the joint-best odds of landing the No. 1 overall pick (14 percent). The 17-win Houston Rockets had to settle for the No. 2 pick.

Aside from Detroit, the Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors were the biggest lottery winners after moving into the top four.

Here's a look at the draft order as the lottery unfolds.


2021 NBA Draft Order

First Round

1. Detroit Pistons

2. Houston Rockets

3. Cleveland Cavaliers

4. Toronto Raptors

5. Orlando Magic

6. Oklahoma City Thunder

7. Golden State Warriors (via Minnesota)

8. Orlando Magic (via Chicago)

9. Sacramento Kings

10. New Orleans Pelicans

11. Charlotte Hornets

12. San Antonio Spurs

13. Indiana Pacers

14. Golden State Warriors

15. Washington Wizards

16. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Boston)

17. Memphis Grizzlies

18. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Miami)

19. New York Knicks

20. Atlanta Hawks

21. New York Knicks (via Dallas)

22. Los Angeles Lakers

23. Houston Rockets (via Portland)

24. Houston Rockets (via Milwaukee)

25. Los Angeles Clippers

26. Denver Nuggets

27. Brooklyn Nets

28. Philadelphia 76ers

29. Phoenix Suns

30. Utah Jazz


Second Round

31. Milwaukee Bucks (via Houston Rockets)

32. New York Knicks (via Detroit Pistons)

33. Orlando Magic

34. New Orleans Pelicans (via Cleveland)

35. Oklahoma City Thunder

36. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Minnesota)

37. Detroit Pistons (via Toronto)

38. Chicago Bulls (via New Orleans)

39. Sacramento Kings

40. New Orleans Pelicans (via Chicago)

41. San Antonio Spurs

42. Detroit Pistons (via Charlotte)

43. New Orleans Pelicans (via Washington)

44. Brooklyn Nets (via Indiana)

45. Boston Celtics

46. Toronto Raptors (via Memphis)

47. Toronto Raptors (via Golden State)

48. Atlanta Hawks (via Miami)

49. Brooklyn Nets (via Atlanta)

50. Philadelphia 76ers (via New York)

51. Memphis (via Portland)

52. Detroit Pistons (via Lakers).

53. New Orleans Pelicans (via Dallas)

54. Indiana Pacers (via Milwaukee)

55. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Denver)

56. Charlotte Hornets (via Clippers)

57. Charlotte Hornets (via Brooklyn)

58. New York Knicks (via Philadelphia)

59. Brooklyn Nets (via Phoenix)

60. Indiana Pacers (via Utah)


Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman listed Cunningham as the No. 1 player on his most recent big board, writing, "Cunningham is locked into the top spot."

The Oklahoma State was the No. 1 recruit in the 2020 class, per 247Sports' composite rankings, and he lived up to the hype in his one year with the Cowboys. The 6'8" guard averaged 20.1 points and 3.5 assists while shooting 43.8 percent from the floor and 40.0 percent on three-pointers.

For the teams that didn't get the No. 1 pick but still landed in the top five, it isn't the end of the world.

Gonzaga's Jalen Suggs and USC's Evan Mobley excelled during their only years of college, while Jonathan Kuminga and Jalen Greene solidified their draft stock with the G League Ignite.

Suggs enjoyed one of the single best moments during the 2020-21 NCAA season when his buzzer-beater sent the Zags into the national title game.

The NCAA tournament provided the 6'4" guard with a great showcase. He averaged 18.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.7 assists in Gonzaga's final three games.

The same could be said of Mobley, who put up 13.5 points, 9.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocks during the Trojans' run to the Elite Eight. Over the course of the season, the 7-footer flashed the range (12-of-40 from beyond the arc) that will make teams hopeful he can emerge as a potent scorer from all three levels.

It will still probably be a long time before the NBA's professional path through the G League seriously disrupts the traditional pipeline, but the early success of Green and Kuminga will likely lend more credence to the concept.

Green averaged 17.9 points and shot 46.1 percent during his time with the Ignite, while Kuminga averaged 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds.

In general, anticipation about the 2021 draft class was building well before fans and evaluators got substantial samples from players in the collegiate ranks and professional leagues outside of the NBA.

While it's far too early to make final judgments, that excitement appears to have been justified.


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