By Ray Boyd
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — According to reports, the NBA is considering changing the system for the NBA lottery. With the word “tanking,” entering the mindset of many Sixers fans last season, any change to the current system could impact the Sixers slow and steady building strategy.
The changes are believed to be geared at curbing tanking among the teams that are not bound for the NBA Playoffs. Under the current system, the team with the worst record has a 25 % chance at the number one overall selection, the second worst team has a 19.9 % chance and the third worst team has a 15.6 % chance.
Under the newly proposed plan, the league will make the playing field a little more even. If the plan goes through, the four worst teams in the league will each have the same odds at getting the number one pick. There will be no actual difference between finishing as the worst team or the fourth worst team. The next team would have a 10% chance and the team with the best record out of the non-playoff teams will see an increased chance from 0.5 % to 2 %.
The idea is to make the odds a bit more even to among the teams to decrease the benefits of tanking. Teams may be more compelled to compete for a playoff spot if they have a slightly better chance to still wind up with the number one pick even if they slightly miss out on the postseason.
The Sixers, who finished with the second worst record in the league, wound up with the third overall pick despite their 19.9 % odds at the first selection.
General Manager Sam Hinkie has been under some fire for his decision to select two players that would not be ready to play this upcoming season, thus almost guaranteeing another season similar to the 19 win campaign of last year.
The league has expressed a willingness to make these changes this upcoming season and Sixers fans may be a bit less tolerable of the losing if the team’s odds at locking up the top pick decrease even if they still lose a comparable amount of games.
There will undoubtedly be opposition to the change. Teams that have committed to the slow rebuild approach are relying on those odds in the upcoming years so the league should expect opposition from those franchises. However, perennial playoff teams may be happy to know that they could gain a high draft pick in the event they just miss out on a playoff spot.
The changes are still just a proposal. With that said, new commissioner Adam Silver has shown an acumen for expressing the changes he wants and putting into motion the steps to get there. If the league goes through with this change, it will happen fast. The blueprint for Hinkie’s master plan for the Sixers, may have to change some.
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