How the NBA Draft Lottery odds work for the Suns, Lakers and Celtics
The magic number for the second-best NBA Draft Lottery odds is now “1.”
As of Sunday night, the Phoenix Suns (24-57) own the second-worst NBA record but have a 1.5-game edge on the Lakers, who are 25-55 after D’Angelo Russell’s three-point game winner to beat Minnesota, 110-109, and Phoenix’s 124-111 win over Dallas.
With three games remaining between them — two for Los Angeles and one for Phoenix — a combined one Lakers win or Suns loss would secure the second-worst NBA record for Phoenix.
D'Angelo Russell gets a major shooter's bounce to beat the Wolves at the buzzer pic.twitter.com/vjO4M0YIVm
— CJ Fogler (@cjzero) April 10, 2017
The Brooklyn Nets — they have a 25-percent shot of winning the lottery — sit 3.5 games ahead of Phoenix in the upside-down standings with a 20-60 record. They have clinched the top spot and will surrender the pick to the Boston Celtics.
Comparing the odds
A team that has the lone worst record has a 25-percent shot at drafting first, 21.5-percent opportunity to draft second, 17.8-percent chance at third and a 35.7-percent shot at drafting fourth.
Here’s what the Suns and Lakers are fighting for: Finishing with the second-worst record in the NBA comes with a 19.9-percent shot of winning the top pick, 18.8-percent chance of drafting second and 17.1-percent shot of drafting third. A second-to-last team would have a 31.9-percent chance of drafting fourth and 12.3-percent shot of picking fifth.
A team with the third-best odds would have a 15.6-percent chance of winning the lottery, 15.7-percent opportunity to draft second and 15.6-percent shot at picking third. There is a 22.6-percent chance for the third-worst team to pick fourth and 26.5-percent opportunity to draft fifth with a slim 4-percent shot of drafting sixth.
Suns schedule: at Sacramento.
Lakers schedule: vs. New Orleans, at Golden State.