With the 2022-23 NBA season coming to an exciting close, fans will soon be turning their attention to the build-up to the next season. The NBA draft presented by State Farm is a huge part of this and will go a long way to determining what happens in the new season, so what do we know about it so far?
Who Has the Top Picks?
We still don’t know what the exact order of the picks will be, but things are getting clearer. That’s because a set of tiebreakers were recently drawn to break apart the teams that had achieved identical records in the last regular season. In this way, the Houston Rockets, the Indian Pacers, the Chicago Bulls, the Miami Heat, and the Phoenix Suns all won their tiebreakers. The next step will be the NBA Draft Lottery, which is going to be held on May 16 and you can watch it on ESPN at 8.30 pm.
After that, the draft will take place on June 22. The first round sees the Detroit Pistons, the Houston Rockets, and the San Antonio Spurs with the best chance of getting early picks, with a 14% probability listed for each of them in the lottery odds. After those four teams, the Charlotte Hornets, the Portland Trail Blazers, and the Orlando Magic are the other teams whose lottery odds are at 9% or higher.
The second round covers the picks from 31 to 58 and starts off with Detroit followed by Houston, Charlotte, and then Portland. However, we also need to bear in mind that some of the franchises are going to trade their picks for players or for future selections. For example, this look at how the Spurs could get their hands on a first-round pick explains three different ways of doing this. The latest basketball betting odds are focused on who will win this year’s playoff.
Some fans will already be looking ahead to next season and be keen to find out what the odds are on their favorite team having a successful season. How well each team does in the draft is one of the factors that will affect their chances of success, so who are the elite prospects that everyone wants to pick?
Who Are the Top Picks for 2023?
All eyes are on the elite players that all the franchises want, so which players are likely to be picked in the first rounds of the draft this year? Victor Wembanyama is one of the names we’ll be hearing a lot of in the run-up to the draft. This French player is expected by most analysts to be the first pick and is considered to be an outstanding prospect. He’s been playing as a power forward or center for Metropolitans 92, who compete in the French LNB Pro A.
Point guard Scoot Henderson is another player expected to be among the top picks when the draft begins. He’s been playing in the NBA G League, where he became the youngest player in the league’s history when he signed on for a reported $1 million instead of playing college basketball, which was a controversial decision at the time but many may feel has been vindicated if he gets picked early in the draft.
A consensus five-star recruit in the 2022 class, Brandon Miller is a small forward who’s expected to be picked early in the draft. However, 2023 hasn’t been easy for him so far, as he had disappointing shooting statistics while playing for Alabama in the NCAA tournament and was caught up in a firearm incident although no charges were brought against him.
Cam Whitmore was another five-star recruit in the 2022 class and joined the Villanova Wildcats Playing as a small forward. He was named as the Big East Conference Men’s Basketball Freshman of the Year in his first season of college basketball and could soon have the chance to become one of the NBA’s youngest MVP contenders.
What About the Rule Changes?
You may have heard something about changes to the NBA draft rules and be wondering whether this influences this year’s draft. The truth is that the new rules come into force in 2024, but it’s still worth taking a look just now at the upcoming changes.
The major difference is that all players invited to the NBA draft combine will be ineligible for the draft unless they attend it. Therefore, all players will need to undergo the league’s medical examinations, performance testing, shooting drills, and all the other aspects that this event involves. They’ll also have to take part in interviews and other media duties.
This change is seen as giving the franchises more power, by removing the chance for the agents of sought-after players to keep their clients away from the teams that they don’t want them to go to. It will also mean that we get to see all the top prospects at the draft combine, making it more interesting.
This year’s draft seems certain to be a hugely entertaining and tense affair. With some terrific prospects to be picked up, we’ll have something to focus on once the NBA playoffs are over and this season comes to an end.