Kings "Win" Race to the Bottom
Lord knows there are more important things to talk about this morning, Flip Saunders primary among them, but the Kings' loss to the Spurs on Sunday night means they've officially clinched the worst record in the NBA this season. They're 16-64 with two games remaining.
That gets the Wizards and Clippers, both 19-61 through Sunday night, off the hook. Or it knocks them back a peg, depending on how you look at it. For their efforts, or lack of, the Kings get 25 percent of the combinations of ping-pong balls in the drawing for the No. 1 pick. The second-place finisher gets 19.9 percent and third gets 15.6 percent. If the Wizards and Clippers remain tied, they split the difference -- there is no tiebreaker. If the Wizards finish with the third-worst record, they'll pick no lower than sixth.
For the Wizards fans out there looking for a silver lining, the team with the worst record in the lottery has been drawn for the top pick just three times (New Jersey in 1990, Cleveland in 2003 and Orlando in 2004) since the NBA started using a weighted lottery in 1990.
The team with the second-worst record has picked first three of 19 times (Orlando in 1992, Philadelphia in 1996, and the Clippers in 1998), and the third-worst record has received the top pick three times.
The anti-silver lining? One of those three times, it was Washington who got the No. 1, and I don't think I need to remind you how they used that pick. It was also the last season in which the Wizards won 19 games, in 2000-01.
Finishing in the bottom three doesn't guarantee a top-three pick though. In 2007, when Memphis, Boston and Milwaukee had the NBA's three worst records, they ended up with the fourth, fifth and sixth picks, behind Portland (which drafted Greg Oden), Seattle (Kevin Durant) and Atlanta (Al Horford).
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