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2022 NBA Draft Lottery: Pelicans hope good fortune shines on Lakers’ first-round pick

David Griffin is aiming for his fifth draft lottery win!

NBA: NBA Draft Lottery Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

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.

Draft lottery odds

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.

According to Christian Clark of, David Griffin will be inside the drawing room, while Swin Cash will represent the Pelicans on stage of the live televised portion of the draft lottery.

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.

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.

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

For more Pelicans talk, subscribe to The Bird Calls podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow this author on Twitter at @OlehKosel.