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Pacers Win Tiebreaker For 11th Lottery Position

The Pacers won a random draw with the Jazz today that gives Indiana the 11th lottery position and Utah the 12th, reports Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe (Twitter link). The teams finished with identical 38-44 records this season. Indiana will have an eight-in-1,000 chance at the No. 1 overall pick, and Utah will have a seven-in-1,000 chance, but while the extra chance the Pacers have probably won’t matter, the Pacers are in line to pick one spot in front of the Jazz if, as is most likely, neither team wins any of the top three picks.

The Lakers, who hold Houston’s first-rounder, won a random draw with the Celtics, who have the Clippers’ selection, for the 27th pick, so Boston will pick 28th, Washburn also reports (Twitter link). The Mavericks have the 21st pick and the Bulls the 22nd after winning the random draw between those teams, and the Grizzlies won their draw with the Spurs for pick No. 25, leaving San Antonio pick No. 26, according to Dan Feldman of We’ve updated our post showing this year’s draft order and lottery odds with the latest news.

The procedure for two teams tied for lottery spots dictates that they split the odds for the two positions they occupy, and that the winner of the tiebreaker receive the extra chance if there’s an odd number of them. But since the 11th team in the lottery receives eight chances out of 1,000 and the 12th gets seven chances out of 1,000 to win the lottery, the Pacers simply take over the odds of the 11th spot. There’s less than a 10% chance that either team will move up or back in the lottery.

The tiebreaker comes with a slight financial consequence for next season, since the Pacers will have the rookie scale amount for the 11th pick instead of the 12th counting against their cap, and the Jazz the opposite, a difference of nearly $100K. That difference will be slightly larger once the draftees sign for the usual 120% of those scale amounts. The teams could remove those respective cap hits if they and the players they pick agree in writing not to sign next season, but that’s an unlikely outcome.

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