Every single NBA Draft Lottery, the conspiracy theorists will come out in full force.
In reality though, the lottery is just an endeavor of mixed integrity. The genuine, empirical truth likely lies somewhere between the two polarities of “hey, man it’s all manipulated by the league, the NBA Draft lottery Illuminati know!” and “just luck/serendipity! (or what economists call “pure competition”)
It’s rather sad though, how much the world has changed in such a short time since we did the first and only previous edition of this article in 2015.
There have been always been “truthers” out there, declaring war on facts. However, only since January 20th, has one of those people been the leader of the free world.
Also no, this article’s publication schedule was planned out long before the Avril Lavigne conspiracy theory took off today. That’s all just a coincidence.
Want to read about the Avril Lavigne death conspiracy but the thread's 50 tweets long.
Why'd she have to go and make things so complicated?
— Chris Scullion (@scully1888) May 14, 2017
me at the beginning of the avril lavigne thread: conspiracy theories are dumb. people are so gullible.
me at the end of the thread: pic.twitter.com/WwSDWIUy9Q
— j (@gIumkid) May 14, 2017
It’s within this framework that we ranked every team in the NBA Draft Lottery by “worthiness of manipulation.” Meaning if I were in charge of the NBA and I could fix the lottery, this is who I would have win tomorrow night- That team is ranked #1.
My second choice is ranked #2 and so on. The franchise ranked #13 (not #14 as Sacramento have two team picks this time) is the last team I’d manipulate the ping ping balls for.
The probability numbers come courtesy of Tankathon (Tuesday 7:00 CST on ESPN).
(Photo Credit: “Inside the NBA” on TNT)
1. New York Knicks- #1 overall pick chances: 5.3% Top 3- 18.3% #Knicks
Fixing it for the Knicks is the way to go. NBA Commissioner David Silver was born and raised (according to his Wikipedia page) north of New York City in the suburb of Rye in Westchester County. At an early age, Silver was a New York Knicks fan.
Also, NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum went to high school in Brooklyn. Gotham makes the most practical sense: the #1 media market, a historic, name brand franchise, and then you have Phil Jackson. The Zen Master has done so much for the league, they should just throw him a bone here.
Also, he needs all the help he can get, as we’re all tired of hearing about the Knicks even though they haven’t really been very relevant. It would be nice for everyone involved if that that Knicks talk was actually justified for once.
(Photo Credit: “Inside the NBA” on TNT)
2. L.A. Lakers- #1 overall pick chances: 15.6%, Top 3- 45.6% #LakeShow
This is yet another proverbial slam dunk. As the NBA’s biggest brand and most well known franchise, the league needs the Lake Show to be as relevant as possible at all times.
Factor in the 2nd largest market, and you’ve got the cliched Homecoming narrative (see 2003 NBA Draft Lottery, 2008 NBA Draft Lottery), if they take Anaheim native and former UCLA Bruin Lonzo Ball. Now I think about it, hell, even I want to fix the NBA Draft Lottery for the Lakers.
Most NBA mock drafts have Ball going second, with D.C./Baltimore area native and former Washington Huskie Markelle Fultz being the top selection. Unfortunately, you don’t have the teams available in this lottery to fix up and create the ‘homecoming’ bit.
3. – Dallas #1 overall pick chances 1.7%, top 3- 6.1% #MFFL
Go to NBA Deputy Mark Tatum’s linkedIn page, under “interests” he lists Dalllas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban, a man who loves attention almost as much as Trump does. It’s time to get him in the public eye as much as is humanly possible, between now and the 2020 presidential election.
Cuban, like Trump, is also a publicity hound loquacious billionaire famous for a reality show franchise centered around business, may or may not be gearing up for the start of a tremendous political career. He certainly 1.) has a long standing, well publicized feud with Trump and 2.) would the anti-Hillary Clinton kind of candidate the Democrats are looking for.
Cuban has said repeatedly that he is not running for President in 2020, but that hasn’t stopped the speculation. Bovada still has him at 100-1 to win the presidency in 2020.
If you want to know more about Cuban’s political views, read some of the highlights of what he said on Meet the Press.
In general though, the NBA is more “woke” than any other sports league BY FAR. (Here’s more on that).
Or maybe Gregg Popovich should run in 2020.
4. Charlotte Hornets- #1 overall pick chances: 0.8% Top 3- 2.9% #BuzzCity
Remember, the NBA is a quasi-individual sport hidden within a team sport, and the Hornets are owned by the biggest individual in the entire history of the sport. Michael Jordan needs all the help he can get trying to build these losers into something competitive.
Since individual star power always outranks market size in terms of importance (way more people tune in to see the name on the back of the jersey than they do the name on the front) the NBA owes MJ for single-handedly growing the brand.
5. Boston (via Brooklyn) #1 overall pick chances: 0.8% #Celtics
Before Bird, Jordan and Magic dominated the 1980s, the NBA was more a less an afterthought. The Celtics were one of the league’s major flagship brands in that era, just as they were before that, and much like they are now. The Celtics are right back near the top of the league, but one more piece could put them over the top.
If the Celtics are thriving, so is the league, so this lottery manipulation would have some merit.
6. Philadelphia 76ers- #1 overall pick chances: 11.9%, 37.8% #MADEinPHILA
Traditional Power with a crazed fan base currently resides as a sleeping giant. It’s also a big market There are worse beliefs than the NBA should fix the lottery for the Sixers. Believing that 9/11 was an inside job..that’s a much worse belief.
7. Phoenix Suns- #1 overall pick chances: 19.9%, Top 3- 55.8% #WeArePHX
The assumption that the NBA Draft lottery will be fixed for the Suns is right up there with the idea that Barack Obama wire-tapped Donald Trump.
8. Denver Nuggets- #1 overall pick chances: 0.6%, top 3- 2.2% #MileHighBasketball
When it comes to the Nuggets, I literally have nothing. That’s because the aliens from Xenoduxcvax RS7, who happen to be huge Nuggets fans for some reason, instructed me to shut up about their 2017 NBA Draft lottery situation.
9. Detroit Pistons- #1 overall pick chances: 0.7%, Top 2.5% #DetroitBasketball
I came up with a few Pistons scenarios, but none of them were all that compelling. At least not as compelling as my exclusive with Tim Donaghy; one of the more highest viewed posts in the site’s history, Therefore, I republish it every year during NBA Finals time. Here is a link to three other NBA conspiracy theories that you might want to check out.
Believing in a pre-determined lottery win for the Pistons though, is kind of like Kyrie Irving’s flat eartherism, Blake Griffin’s creationism and Draymond Green’s skepticism about the roundness of Earth even in spite of satellite photos.
In other words, the NBA might be more woke than other league in cumulative, but it’s also possibly most asleep on aggregate in some ways.
10. Orlando Magic- #1 overall pick chances: 8.8%, 29.1% #LetsGoMagic
By the time you get to #10, you’re not quite in “three million illegal aliens voted, and all for Hillary Clinton, in the latest election” town, but you’re certainly in the suburbs. You’ve seen the ESPN 30 for 30 “this Magic moment,” so you already know that this team had their chance- twice.
11. Minnesota Timberwolves- #1 overall pick chances: 5.3%, top 3- 8.3% #PowerofthePack
If the T’Wolves win the lottery, and you think it happened only because it’s fixed, you’re the type who believes POTUS 44 Barack Obama is a Kenyan-born Muslim, or the founder of ISIS- or worse yet both!
I appreciate you wearing your tin foil hat while reading this. I’ll let Weird Al Yankovic take it from here:
12. Miami Heat- #1 overall pick chances 0.5%, Top 3- 1.8% #TheHeatisOn
Let’s just say that if the Miami Heat win the 2017 NBA Draft Lottery…you can say for sure that the 2017 NBA Draft Lottery is not rigged. You know that given how extremely disinterested and apathetic their fan base is.
Or at least that’s what the men in dark suits, who emerged from the black helicopters instructed me to type here…(I better move on the to the next item, because they just nudged my back with their weapons).
13. Sacramento Kings- #1 overall pick chances: 2.8%, Top 3 chances- 9.9% #SacramentoProud
Sacramento (from New Orleans) #1 overall pick chances 1.1%, Top 3 chances- 4%
I don’t know what to say here….Blame Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith, because they just didn’t give me much of a story, after they used flashing thing neuro-lizer thing on me.
(Editor’s Note: obviously, you realized that this piece is parody and not intended to be taken literally)
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, partnered with FOX Sports Engage Network. and News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes to WGN CLTV and KOZN.Follow paulmbanks