The Pelicans are hours away of learning an important fate.
It’s a near lock that the 2022 Lakers first-round pick winds up in New Orleans’ hands, but the exact position in the upcoming draft remains a tossup. That answer will be revealed in tonight’s NBA draft lottery.
There’s a 26.3 percent chance this valuable pick climbs into the top four of June’s draft, with 6.0% odds of landing first overall, but it’s much more likely to stay at #8 (34.5%) or drop a spot to #9 (32.1%).
The odds are low that the Lakers’ 2022 first-rounder falls to #10 (6.8%) and downright diminutive of plunging all the way to #11 (0.4%), whereby it would then convey to the Grizzlies due to the Jonas Valanciunas-Steven Adams trade last summer.
Thank goodness top-10 protections were placed, right?!
If the selection does stay in the top 10 as expected, the Pelicans will officially send the Cavaliers’ 2022 second-rounder and their own 2025 second-rounder to Memphis.
In case it’s slipped from memory, Cash’s reaction last year almost made up for the fact that New Orleans failed to move up from the tenth overall pick.
Swin Cash’s reaction to the Pelicans picking tenth pic.twitter.com/kT6UMfCBfg— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) June 23, 2021
To be honest, I’m just as curious about which emotion spills out this time as of learning where the Lakers’ 2022 first-rounder settles.
Unless the pick slides through New Orleans’ fingers because three teams behind Los Angeles moved into the top four, remember to smile about all other potential outcomes. The Pelicans are on the verge of being the only team from the playoffs to head into next month’s draft armed with a lottery pick.
“It’s rare that you’re a playoff team and have that type of opportunity in front of us, to be able to have a lottery pick, on top of what we’ve done,” Willie Green said in his season-ending interview.
Adding a top-10 pick — courtesy of the Anthony Davis trade — along with a healthy Zion Williamson is incredibly fun to ponder given how strongly the Pelicans finished the 2021-22 season. That said, let’s hope Griff brings a certain famous lucky tie with him.
Pelicans’ David Griffin explains how he obtained lucky tie from Cavaliers’ Jeff Cohen for Alvin Gentry to wear to win 2019 NBA Draft Lotttery drawing & rights to draft Zion Williamson. The tie has now won 4 lotteries. pic.twitter.com/AVVxAZ7UpN— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) May 15, 2019
If lightning strikes once again, it’ll mark the third lottery win in the last 11 years for the New Orleans franchise.
Let’s Geaux Pels!
Who: 2022 NBA Draft lottery
When: May 17, 7:00 p.m. CT
Where to watch: ESPN