Tanking is all fun and games until it becomes a national topic of conversation. If a report from Grantland's Zach Lowe is true, Adam Silver is indeed serious about quelling the incentive to lose among NBA franchises.
Per Lowe, an official proposal has been submitted to the competition committee that convenes each summer, with several notable changes that could have an effect on teams looking to use a rebuilding process reflective of the 76ers' current plan. The major change is a redistribution of the odds, spreading them thinner among all teams in the lottery:
The league's proposal gives at least the four worst teams the same chance at winning the no. 1 pick: approximately an identical 11 percent shot for each club. The odds decline slowly from there, with the team in the next spot holding a 10 percent chance. The lottery team with the best record will have a 2 percent chance of leaping to the no. 1 pick, up from the the minuscule 0.5 percent chance it has under the current system.
This would still give bottom-rung teams like the Sixers better odds to obtain a top pick, but it would leave them more susceptible to jumps like that which we saw from the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Perhaps more importantly, Lowe relays that the drawing would in theory take place for the top six picks, expanded from the top three drawing that the league currently uses. With the odds spread and the chance for teams to jump at a wider range of targets, the worst case scenario for tanking (or just plain bad) teams gets pushed to the back of the top 10.
There are some things that have to be cleared up for this to go through. Lowe notes that the Wheel proposal -- which has been met with a fair amount of scorn here -- would have had to wait for at least a half dozen years due to pick protections on traded assets. This change, however, is being pushed for implementation as soon as next year according to Lowe, which doesn't seem consistent with the idea that the league must wait out pick protections.
This has a chance to throw the Sixers rebuild off kilter just a bit, and we'll have more on how this could effect the rebuild in the coming days. This will have far-reaching effects around the league, but they were never going to be tanking forever. Stay dormant, Team Panic.