Atlanta Hawks gets to pick first in NBA draft after winning lottery

Time Of Info By TOI Desk Report   May 13, 2024   Update on : May 13, 2024

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Photo: Courtesy/@ATLHawks

After defeating the odds to win the draft lottery in Chicago on Sunday, the Atlanta Hawks will be the first pick in the 2024 NBA draft when it takes place the following month.

The 14 teams who missed the playoffs participated in the lottery to establish the early draft selection order. The weighted system offered the 14-68 Detroit Pistons and the 15-67 Washington Wizards a 14% chance of securing the top choice.

Atlanta—who actually made the Eastern Conference play-in and only had a 3% chance—won the drawing, besting the Charlotte Hornets and Portland Trail Blazers, who had the next best odds.

The Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs will pick first and second, respectively, behind the Wizards.

After winning the lottery the previous year, the Spurs chose French sensation Victor Wembanyama, who earned Rookie of the Year this season following a stellar rookie year.

In contrast to the previous year, when Wembanyama was almost a lock to go first, the top pick this year is less clear.

Though many pundits believe French prodigy Alex Sarr is the most likely first choice, fellow countryman Zaccharie Risacher is right behind him.

Sarr, a 19-year-old center who stands 7 feet 1 inch, spent a season in the Australian NBL with the Perth Wildcats. During two exhibition games against the G League Ignite in Las Vegas, Sarr attracted the attention of NBA management.

The 19-year-old Risacher competes in the LNB Pro A French League for JL Bourg-en-Bresse.

Other players that might be selected in the top five are Serbian guard Nikola Topic, guard Stephon Castle, and center Donovan Clingan of the University of Connecticut.

The draft combine, which got underway in Chicago on Sunday, will provide prospective draft picks an opportunity to show off their abilities.

The dates of the draft are June 26–27.


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