OK, so a little refresher on what’s on the line tonight:
The Thunder own the Raptors first round pick, acquired from Houston in the James Harden trade. (The Rockets got it by trading Kyle Lowry to Toronto.)
The pick is top-three protected, meaning if the ping-pong balls bounce in the top three for the Raptors, they get to keep the pick. Anything 4-14, the Thunder use it. If the pick lands in the top three, it then rolls over to next season where it is top-two protected.
The 12th worst record has seven combinations in the lottery, or 0.7 percent chance to win. That’s not seven percent. That’s zero point seven percent. There’s a 0.8 percent chance for the No. 2 and a 0.10 percent chance at No. 3. Between pick four and 11, there’s zero chance. There’s also a zero percent chance at No. 14.
So, if they get to use it, the Thunder are guaranteed to be picking between 12 and 13, with a 93.5 percent chance of No. 12 and a 3.9 percent chance at No. 13.
The Raptors were 7-2 in April after going 4-11 in March and dropping to the seventh worst record. But they finished strong and the Blazers lost their last 13.
In draft lottery history, the 12th worst record has never won the lottery.
So after tonight, we’ll know if all this talk about Gorgui Dieng and Cody Zeller and C.J. McCollum and whoever else is actually worth our time.