For the third year in a row, the Liberty Ballers crew has joined forces with the Rights to Ricky Sanchez to host yet another draft lottery party (information here). And for the second year in a row (thanks to ESPN's Lottery Machine), we've simulated the NBA Draft Lottery 102 times to try to predict what will happen later on tonight.
Of course, this is in no way any sort of reflection of what's to come, but it's a pretty entertaining exercise, nonetheless (at least to us). For what it's worth, in last year's version of the draft simulator, the Sixers picked Emmanuel Mudiay over Jahlil Okafor when landing at No. 3, so there's that.
Some highlights (and graphs) are below:
- The Sixers have the best odds of the No. 1 pick, so it's no surprise that they won the simulation 26 times. Toronto, Chicago, Utah and Sacramento never landed at No. 1 (I assume that the ESPN lottery machine factors in the possible Sixers/Kings pick swap as well as the Raptors/Knicks/Nuggets pick obligations).
- The Lakers' pick conveyed in 49 of the 102 simulations (48 percent).
- The most frequent outcome for the Sixers had them falling to the No. 4 slot with the Lakers' pick not conveying (18.6% of all simulations). The exercise also saw the Sixers wind up with both the second and fourth picks 14.7 percent of the time. The most desirable result (1 and 4) happened in 12 of the 102 runs.
- In exactly half of the simulations (51 times), the Sixers' highest pick fell at either No. 3 or No. 4. In most of those cases, the Sixers chose Jamal Murray over Buddy Hield and Kris Dunn. ESPN's simulator only has the 76ers drafting Dunn when them team wound up with both No. 4 and No. 5.
- And given the tweet above, it should come as no surprise that the Sixers landed a top-2 pick 50 percent of the time. Factoring in a possible swap with the Kings, the 76ers have a 49.5% chance of leaving New York with either No. 1 or No. 2.
- Ben Simmons and Brandon Ingram (in that order) were always the first two players off of the board. In a fair number of simulations, Dragan Bender was selected third overall, but regardless of where he went, the trio of guards near the top of many draft boards - Jamal Murray, Buddy Hield, Kris Dunn - were always picked in that order.