With all the hoopla surrounding the 2014 NBA Draft lottery proceedings last night, it may have been one of the “losers” that lucked out.
In this year’s draft, there are only three players worthy of the top pick: Kansas’ Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid and Duke’s Jabari Parker. However, There is no clear consensus as to who’s deserving of the top spot, let alone the second spot. A mistake here could mean a team gets stuck in future lotteries for years to come (or in Cleveland’s case, continues doing what they’re doing). And a mistake like that could mean a GM or president loses his job.
So if all the pressure is on the general managers and teams to make the correct pick, and there are only three worthy players up for debate, naturally the best spot to be is picking third. Whatever player falls is a win-win.
For the Philadelphia 76ers, the narrative is obvious. They have almost no say in who they end up with. Two of the top three players will be selected ahead of them. They are then left with only one choice to make by taking whoever is available of those top three guys. There is nothing to debate, no one to blame if things don’t work out and they are assured of a possible star player.
In the unlikely possibility that Cleveland or Milwaukee don’t select one of these top three players, then Philadelphia lucks out again, having a choice that wasn’t even supposed to come to them. And no matter who they end up with, pairing him with Nerlens Noel will make for a formidable front court.