Drawing To Decide Kings' Likely NBA Draft Position

Thomas Robinson, a plausible top-5 pick. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

The NBA will hold drawings today to settle ties in the NBA draft order. This varies from the mundane (will the Spurs or Bulls pick No. 29?!?!) and the incredibly important (the Warriors' drawing of doom!). The Kings' drawing with the Nets is somewhere in the middle.

Both teams will have 25 percent probabilities of jumping up into the top 3 in the draft. (Remember: New Jersey only keeps its pick if it lands No. 3 or higher. Otherwise, Portland takes it.) The drawing barely affects the odds for the No. 1 overall -- the winner will have 7.6 percent odds, and the loser 7.5 percent.

Where the drawing really matters is in the event neither teams leaps up.

The winner of the Kings-Nets drawing will have that 25 percent probability of leaping into the top 3, no possibility of landing at No. 4, a 26 percent probability of landing the No. 5 pick, a 36 percent probability of landing the No. 6 pick, an 8 percent chance of landing the No. 7 pick and a less than 1 percent chance of landing at No. 8.

The loser of the Kings-Nets drawing will have that 25 percent probability of leaping into the top 3, but no possibility of landing at No. 4 or No. 5, a 44 percent probability of landing at No. 6, a 30 percent probability of landing at No. 7, a 4 percent probability of landing at No. 8 and a less than 1 percent probability of landing at No. 9.

The winner of the drawing's "expected pick" (using a weighted average of the odds) would be No. 4.8. (And with the 4.8th pick in the 2012 NBA Draft ...) The loser of the drawing's expected pick would by No. 5.4. So there's a difference there.

There's really no advantage for the Nets to win the drawing, since they need the top-3 pick. Maybe we can trade them Travis Outlaw for an agreement to forfeit the drawing?

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