The Concept of the NBA Draft
The NBA Draft is the annual event in which basketball teams select the top amateur players throughout the world to help restock their rosters with younger talent. All college and international players are eligible to declare themselves for the draft as long as they are at least 19 years old. In addition, players who went to high school in the United States must wait one year from the time of graduation until they can declare themselves eligible for the draft.
In practice, this has the effect of banning high school players from joining the NBA until they have played at least one year of college basketball. This rule was adopted by the NBA in 2005 in order to prevent the rising tide of top high school players like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant from bypassing college entirely to go straight to the NBA. It was feared that the college game was being hurt by the dearth of top talent, who decided they wanted to receive their payday immediately and not take the risk of injury or other potential problems.
The concept of an annual draft is not unique to the sport of basketball; every major sport in the United States has some form of a draft in order to allocate new players into the game. Regardless of the specific design, all drafts have one major purpose in mind: getting the best players on the rosters of the worst teams. The goal of this idea is to maintain competitive balance throughout the association. To a certain extent, all teams in a league benefit from having competition that is roughly equivalent in talent to their own. Fans want to see exciting contests in close games. If the outcome is essentially predetermined due to the obvious superiority of one team compared to another, then fan support could diminish and revenues decrease throughout the league.
Therefore, drafts are generally set up so that the worst team in the league gets the first chance to select from the pool of new players. This is determined by the team's record in the previous season. Teams are arranged in reverse order of their record, meaning that the team with the most losses is at the top and the team that won the championship the previous season is at the bottom. This arrangement is used to determine the order of the draft.
Although the NBA Draft follows the same concept, it is implemented in a different way from sports like football and baseball. Specifically, the NBA has utilized the concept of a Draft Lottery to determine the order of the draft. Instead of just giving the worst team in the league the first pick of the draft, the NBA Draft Lottery randomizes the process to an extent. However, it is randomized in such a way that the worst team has the best chance of receiving that coveted first pick.
Specifically, the 14 NBA teams that do not make it into the playoffs are entered into the Draft Lottery. Hence, each of these teams is eligible to potentially receive the top pick in the draft. However, the probabilities are weighted such that the teams with worse record are more likely to receive a higher pick. For instance, the team with the worst record in the league has a 25 percent chance to get the first pick, whereas the 14th worst team in the league only has a 0.5 percent chance of receiving that pick.
The actual selection is done with a lottery machine containing 14 balls numbered 1 through 14. Before the Draft Lottery, teams are given random four-number combinations in proportion to their assigned probabilities. So, for instance, the worst team in the league receives 250 "tickets" out of the 1000 total number combinations. Once this has been done, the Draft Lottery can begin. Four balls are randomly selected from the machine. The team that has that combination of numbers is given the first pick in the draft. This process is continued for the second and third picks in the draft. After the third draft pick has been determined, the lottery is over. The remaining 11 teams are assigned their draft order based upon their records in the previous season.
This somewhat convoluted process is designed to discourage bad teams from purposely losing games at the end of the season in the attempt to obtain the top pick in the draft. This is important in order to encourage competitive games at the end of the season, especially when playoff positioning is taking place. Nevertheless these remain promising games to monitor if you're a bit into online sportsbetting. A good tip: William Hill UK's most trusted bookmakers gives the best online betting odds, Join NOW!
Getting picked for the NBA Draft all starts with playing college sports and often futere NBA-players are all-americans playing football and baseball.