The current draft lottery system probably won’t last much longer, writes Grantland’s Zach Lowe, who examines a variety of proposals for changing the system. Perhaps at the root of much of the desire for change is what Lowe identifies as a growing contingent of owners and GMs whose only goal is to win titles, rather than maintaining competitive teams. Lowe goes over several ideas for changing the lottery, and we’ll highlight the ones that appear to be the subject of serious discussion around the league:
- Celtics assistant GM Mike Zarren has come up with a new version of his wheel proposal, Lowe reveals. Zarren suggests that randomly selected teams go into “buckets” with picks grouped one through six, 25 through 30, and so forth, with a mini-lottery within each bucket to determine the precise pick that each team ends up with.
- There is serious concern around the league that the wheel will make it difficult for moribund teams to improve. Lowe doesn’t specify which version of the wheel he’s referring to, but I assume the worry is over the original wheel proposal.
- People around the league like the idea of an unweighted lottery system in which each non-playoff team has an equal shot at the No. 1 pick.
- There’s also discussion about the idea of expanding the lottery to include the bottom 22 teams, and guaranteeing high picks to some of the bottom four playoff teams in each conference.
- Many executives like the idea of factoring a team’s record over the last three seasons into the lottery. Mavs owner Mark Cuban is a proponent of giving the lottery team with the best record the greatest chance of winning the top pick, though he thinks it should be less than the 25% chance that the team with the worst record has of winning the lottery under the current system.
- Cuban and others are also high on the idea of having a random draw determine every lottery pick, rather than just the top three picks, as is the case now.