2021 NBA Draft

Hoops Rumors’ 2020/21 NBA Reverse Standings

Throughout the 2020/21 NBA season, Hoops Rumors will be maintaining a feature that allows you to keep an eye on the tentative 2021 draft order. Our 2020/21 Reverse Standings tool, which lists the NBA’s 30 teams from worst to first, will be updated daily to reflect the outcomes of the previous night’s games.

Our Reverse Standings are essentially a reflection of what 2021’s draft order would look like with no changes to lottery position. We’ve noted each club’s odds of landing the No. 1 overall pick, based on the league’s current lottery format.

[RELATED: Hoops Rumors Glossary: Draft Lottery]

In instances where two non-playoff teams or two playoff teams have identical records, the order in our standings isn’t necessarily definitive — for draft purposes, the NBA breaks ties via random drawings, so those drawings would happen at the end of the year.

Of course, the 14 non-playoff teams all draft before the 16 playoff teams, even if some non-playoff teams have better records than those that made the postseason. Our reverse standings account for playoff seeding, though for now they assume that the Nos. 7 and 8 teams in each conference will earn those final two postseason spots. Since the NBA’s new play-in format opens the door for the Nos. 9 and 10 seeds to sneak into the postseason, we may have to account for a little movement in the draft order at season’s end.

Traded first-round picks are included via footnotes. For example, the note next to Golden State’s pick says the Warriors will send their pick to the Thunder if it’s not in the top 20. As of today, the Warriors’ pick projects to be 18th, meaning that pick wouldn’t change hands.

Some conditions on traded picks are quite complex, leaving little room to fully explain them in our footnotes. We broke down all the details on those traded first-rounders right here.

Our Reverse Standings tracker can be found at anytime on the right sidebar under “Hoops Rumors Features” on our desktop site, or on the “Features” page in our mobile menu. It’s a great resource not just for monitoring a team’s draft position, but also for keeping an eye on whether or not traded picks with protection will be changing hands in 2021. So be sure to check back often as the season progresses!

Note: Mobile users are advised to turn their phones sideways when viewing the Reverse Standings in order to see team records and lottery odds.

Traded Second-Round Picks For 2021 NBA Draft

We’re using the space below to keep tabs on each NBA team’s second-round pick for 2021, continually updating it as necessary throughout the year. Our list of traded first-round picks for 2021 can be found right here.

We’ve listed all 30 teams here, so even if a team hasn’t traded its second-round pick, that will be noted. We’ll also provide details on protections for each traded pick, including what happens to the pick in 2022 if it doesn’t change hands in 2021.

Here’s the full breakdown on the status of each 2021 second-round pick:


Atlantic

  • Boston Celtics: Own pick
  • Brooklyn Nets: Traded to Hornets (unprotected).
  • New York Knicks: Traded to Sixers (unprotected).
  • Philadelphia 76ers: Own pick (or Rockets’ pick).
    • The Rockets have the right to swap second-round picks with the Sixers.
  • Toronto Raptors: Traded to Pistons (unprotected).

Central

  • Chicago Bulls: Own pick (or Pelicans’ pick).
    • The Bulls have the right to swap second-round picks with the Pelicans.
  • Cleveland Cavaliers: Traded to Pelicans (unprotected).
  • Detroit Pistons: Traded to Knicks (unprotected).
  • Indiana Pacers: Traded to Nets (45-60 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Pacers would keep it and would instead owe the Nets their 2022 second-round pick (45-60 protected).
  • Milwaukee Bucks: Traded to Pacers (unprotected).

Southeast

  • Atlanta Hawks: Traded to Nets (unprotected).
  • Charlotte Hornets: Traded to Knicks (unprotected).
  • Miami Heat: Traded to Hawks (unprotected).
  • Orlando Magic: Own pick.
  • Washington Wizards: Traded to Pelicans (unprotected).

Northwest

  • Denver Nuggets: Traded to Thunder (unprotected).
  • Minnesota Timberwolves: Traded to Warriors or Thunder.
    • If the top-20 protected first-round pick the Warriors owe the Thunder lands in its protected range, the Warriors would instead send the Timberwolves’ second-round pick (unprotected) to the Thunder.
  • Oklahoma City Thunder: Traded to Celtics (top-55 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Thunder would keep it and their obligation to the Celtics would be extinguished.
  • Portland Trail Blazers: Traded to Grizzlies (unprotected).
  • Utah Jazz: Traded to Pacers (unprotected).

Pacific

  • Golden State Warriors: Traded to Jazz (unprotected).
  • Los Angeles Clippers: Traded to Hornets (unprotected).
  • Los Angeles Lakers: Traded to Kings (unprotected).
  • Phoenix Suns: Traded to Grizzlies or Nets.
    • The Suns will send their second-round pick to the Grizzlies if it lands in the 31-35 range or to the Nets if it lands in the 36-60 range.
  • Sacramento Kings: Own pick.

Southwest

  • Dallas Mavericks: Own pick.
  • Houston Rockets: Own pick (or Sixers’ pick).
    • The Rockets have the right to swap second-round picks with the Sixers.
  • Memphis Grizzlies: Traded to Kings (unprotected).
  • New Orleans Pelicans: Own pick (or Bulls’ pick).
    • The Bulls have the right to swap second-round picks with the Pelicans.
  • San Antonio Spurs: Own pick.

Information from RealGM was used in the creation of this post.

Traded First-Round Picks For 2021 NBA Draft

The 2021 NBA draft is still about six months away, but a number of teams have already traded their first-round picks for that night, and more clubs may do so before this season’s trade deadline.

We’ll use the space below to keep tabs on each team’s first round pick for 2021, continually updating it as necessary throughout the year.

We’ve listed all 30 teams here, so even if a team hasn’t traded its first-round pick, that will be noted. We’ll also provide details on the protections for each traded pick, including what happens to the pick in 2022 if it doesn’t change hands in 2021.

Here’s the full breakdown on the status of each 2021 first round pick:


Atlantic

  • Boston Celtics: Own pick.
  • Brooklyn Nets: Own pick (or another team’s pick).
    • Details at bottom of story.
  • New York Knicks: Own pick (or Clippers’ pick).
    • The Knicks have the right to swap first-round picks with the Clippers if the Clippers’ pick falls outside of the top four.
  • Philadelphia 76ers: Own pick.
  • Toronto Raptors: Own pick.

Central

  • Chicago Bulls: Own pick.
  • Cleveland Cavaliers: Own pick.
  • Detroit Pistons: Traded to Rockets or Nets (top-16 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Pistons would owe the Rockets their 2022 first-rounder (top-16 protected). More details at bottom of story.
  • Indiana Pacers: Own pick.
  • Milwaukee Bucks: Own pick.

Southeast

  • Atlanta Hawks: Own pick.
  • Charlotte Hornets: Own pick.
  • Miami Heat: Traded to Rockets or Thunder or Nets (unprotected).
    • Details at bottom of story.
  • Orlando Magic: Own pick.
  • Washington Wizards: Own pick.

Northwest

  • Denver Nuggets: Own pick.
  • Minnesota Timberwolves: Traded to Warriors (top-three protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Timberwolves would owe the Warriors their 2022 first-rounder (unprotected).
  • Oklahoma City Thunder: Own pick (or Rockets’ pick).
    • Details at bottom of story.
  • Portland Trail Blazers: Traded to Rockets or Nets (top-14 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Trail Blazers would owe the Rockets their 2022 first-rounder (top-14 protected). More details at bottom of story.
  • Utah Jazz: Traded to Grizzlies (top-seven and 15-30 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Jazz would owe the Grizzlies their 2022 first-rounder (top-six protected).

Pacific

  • Golden State Warriors: Traded to Thunder (top-20 protected).
    • If this pick lands in its protected range, the Warriors would send the Thunder a 2021 second-rounder (Minnesota’s pick; unprotected).
  • Los Angeles Clippers: Own pick (or Knicks’ pick).
    • The Knicks have the right to swap first-round picks with the Clippers if the Clippers’ pick falls outside of the top four.
  • Los Angeles Lakers: Traded to Pelicans (unprotected).
  • Phoenix Suns: Own pick.
  • Sacramento Kings: Own pick.

Southwest

  • Dallas Mavericks: Traded to Knicks (unprotected).
  • Houston Rockets: Own pick (or Thunder’s or Nets’ pick).
    • Details at bottom of story.
  • Memphis Grizzlies: Own pick.
  • New Orleans Pelicans: Own pick.
  • San Antonio Spurs: Own pick.

The complicated series of agreements involving the Rockets, Thunder, Heat, and Nets – which also involve the Pistons’ and Trail Blazers’ first-round picks – requires its own section for a more in-depth explanation. Essentially, the process consists of two key points:

  1. The Thunder will have the right to swap either their first-round pick or the Heat’s first-round pick for the Rockets‘ first-round pick, but only if Houston’s pick doesn’t fall in the top four. In other words, if Houston gets a top-four pick, the Rockets will keep their own first-rounder; if not, the Thunder will get the two most favorable picks of their own, the Heat’s, and the Rockets’, and Houston will get the least favorable.
  2. After the first step is complete, the Rockets will be left with at least one first-round pick, and possibly as many as three, since they’re also owed the Trail Blazers‘ first-rounder (top-14 protected) and the Pistons‘ first-rounder (top-16 protected). They would then have the right to swap any of those picks with the Nets‘ first-rounder (unprotected).

Here’s how this complex arrangement would work in practical terms: Based on the standings as of today (January 20), the Pistons are projected to have the No. 1 overall pick, followed by the Rockets at No. 4, the Heat at No. 8, the Thunder at No. 12 or 13, the Trail Blazers at No. 20 or 21, and the Nets at No. 23.

The Thunder wouldn’t be able to swap picks with Houston in this scenario, since the Rockets’ pick is protected at No. 4, so Houston would retain that pick and Oklahoma City would keep its own first-rounder, along with the Heat’s.

The Pistons would keep their protected pick, since it’s comfortably in the top 16, but the Rockets would get Portland’s pick, which is outside of the top 14. Because Houston’s picks would then be at No. 4 and No. 20/21, there would be no need to swap with the Nets, who are at No. 23.

Information from RealGM was used in the creation of this post.

And-Ones: Felder, Rockets, Musa, 2021 Prospects

Ex-NBA point guard Kay Felder is returning to the Chinese Basketball Association, where he will play for Zhejiang Guangsha Lions, according to Nicola Lupo of Sportando.

The 5’9″ point guard was selected out of Oakland with the No. 52 pick in 2016 by the Hawks before being traded to the Cavaliers. He suited up for the Cavaliers, Bulls and Pistons across parts of two NBA seasons. Felder played for the G League affiliates of all three teams, and joined the Raptors’ G League affiliate, the Raptors 905, for part of the 2018/19 season.

For his NBA career, Felder averaged 3.8 PPG, 1.3 APG and 1.0 RPG. As Lupo notes, Felder averaged approximately 18 points, eight assists, and five rebounds per game during the 2019/20 season for the Xinjiang Guanghui Flying Tigers.

There are more notes from around the basketball world:

  • The Rockets‘ 120-102 loss to the Lakers on Sunday night marked the first Houston game broadcast in China since former general manager Daryl Morey sent out a now-infamous tweet supporting Hong Kong protesters ahead of the 2019/20 NBA season, Marc Stein of the New York Times tweets. Stein adds that Morey’s current club, the Sixers, has not yet had a game broadcast in China this season.
  • Former Nets wing Dzanan Musa will return to Europe to join a new international club, according to agent Misko Raznatovic (via Twitter). The 6’9″ swingman averaged 4.3 PPG, 2.2 RPG, and 1.1 APG across 49 games in his two NBA seasons.
  • Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz of ESPN have discussed which 2021 draft prospects have recently caught their eye in a new top 100 list. Stanford wing Ziaire Williams, LSU shooting guard Cam Thomas, and ASU shooting guard Josh Christopher all merit mention.

And-Ones: G League, Trier, Ross, Expansion, 2021 Draft

Many G League hopefuls – including a number of NBA veterans –  are eligible to be selected in the NBAGL’s 2021 draft, which will take place on Monday. But competition for those draft slots figures to be fierce.

Since the majority of NBAGL roster spots are occupied by affiliate players and returning-rights players, teams often don’t make full use of the draft anyway. In a typical year, the G League draft is four rounds and teams are only required to make two selections. As G League expert Adam Johnson points out (in a Twitter thread), this year’s draft will last just three rounds and teams won’t be required to make any picks.

Roster spots will also be at a premium for a couple more reasons — 11 NBA teams’ affiliates aren’t participating in the G League bubble, and rosters won’t be expanded for training camp, as a coronavirus precaution. Johnson suggests he wouldn’t be surprised if only about 20 or so players are selected in Monday’s draft.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Former Knicks guard Allonzo Trier will be among the players vying to be picked in Monday’s G League draft, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that Trier is signing an NBAGL contract.
  • Magic swingman Terrence Ross has signed with Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul for representation, says Charania (Twitter link). Klutch also added Calvin Andrews as a senior agent directing basketball operations, per Charania, who notes that Andrews’ client list includes Magic forward Aaron Gordon and Timberwolves wing Josh Okogie.
  • A high-ranking team executive who spoke to David Aldridge of The Athletic said the NBA is unlikely to seriously consider expansion before the end of the 2021/22 season. However, Aldridge notes that Seattle is at the top of the league’s list. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said this week that she’s “pretty optimistic” about the city’s chances of getting a team in the coming years.
  • In an Insider-only article for ESPN.com, draft gurus Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz examine how NBA evaluators are approaching this year’s class, take a closer look at some underperforming Kentucky prospects, and consider how a single-site NCAA tournament will impact NBA scouting.

And-Ones: Rubin, LeBron, 2021 Draft, Roth

Michael Rubin, the founder of Fanatics and a current minority shareholder in the Sixers, is a good bet to take over majority control of an NBA team at some point, writes Jon Wertheim of SI.com. According to Wertheim, many people around the league believe it’s likely a matter of “when” – not “if” – Rubin will eventually own a franchise.

“Michael has all of the characteristics that we would look for in a team owner,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said. “He’s smart, innovative and passionate, wants to give back to his community and loves the game.”

If Rubin were to eventually buy a majority stake in another NBA franchise, he’d have to sell his shares of the 76ers.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • In other team ownership news, LeBron James expressed interest (via Twitter) in putting together an ownership group to purchase the Atlanta Dream of the WNBA. The team is currently co-owned by Kelly Loeffler, who lost a run-off election for a Georgia Senate seat on Tuesday. A number of WNBA players have called for Loeffler to no longer be involved with the Dream, but the league has said it won’t force her to sell.
  • The NBA updated its mental health guidelines on Wednesday, urging its teams to increase their commitments to providing mental health resources to players and staffers, reports Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. The changes come in the wake of an ESPN report which suggested that many staffers are feeling overwhelmed with increased responsibilities due to all the new COVID-19 protocols in place this season.
  • Jeremy Woo of SI.com takes a look at some 2021 NBA draft storylines to watch, and explains why he believes the No. 1 spot is Cade Cunningham‘s to lose.
  • Former NBA player and coach Scott Roth, who was the head coach of the G League’s Iowa Wolves from 2017-19, has been hired as the head coach of the Tasmania JackJumpers, the team announced today in a press release. The JackJumpers are an expansion team in Australia’s National Basketball League and will play their inaugural season in 2021/22.

And-Ones: Montgomery, Thomas, NCAA Tourney, 2021 Draft

Former Kentucky forward E.J. Montgomery, who was in training camp with the Bucks last month, has signed with Lithuanian team BC Nevezis, according to an announcement from the club (Twitter link).

After going undrafted in 2020 following his sophomore season with the Wildcats, Montgomery caught on with Milwaukee on a non-guaranteed camp deal, but was cut on December 16. While the Bucks may have, at one point, envisioned Montgomery as a potential G League affiliate player, the Wisconsin Herd opted out of the NBAGL’s bubble plan for 2020/21, opening the door for the 21-year-old to pursue another professional opportunity.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Isaiah Thomas and Excel Sports Management have parted ways, as the free agent point guard continues to seek an NBA comeback, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Presumably, Thomas will hire new representation to spearhead the effort to land him an NBA job.
  • The NCAA was forced to cancel March Madness in 2020, but the 2021 event is still scheduled to tip off in mid-March. According to a press release from the NCAA, the plan is for the entire tournament to take place in Indiana to reduce the coronavirus risk associated with travel.
  • Michael Scotto of HoopsHype spoke to a handful of player agents and team executives about what it looks like when a player requests a trade and how the process typically plays out behind the scenes.
  • Draft expert Jeff Goodman of Stadium has unveiled his big board for the 2021 NBA draft, which is headed by Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs. Cade Cunningham (Oklahoma State), Jalen Green (G League Ignite), Evan Mobley (USC), and Jonathan Kuminga (G League Ignite) fill out Goodman’s initial top five. The same five prospects are atop ESPN’s big board, albeit in a different order.

And-Ones: Dixon, G League, Owners, Rookie Transition Program

Former William & Mary guard Daniel Dixon has retired from professional basketball and will join the Hornets as a video coordinator and basketball operations assistant this season, he told Hoops Rumors.

Dixon holds NBA G League experience with Maine (Celtics), Northern Arizona (Suns) and Windy City (Bulls), spending four years in college before going undrafted in 2017. He also signed a contract in France during the summer of 2018.

At just 26 years old, Dixon joins a revamped Hornets franchise for the 2020/21 season. Charlotte drafted LaMelo Ball at No. 3 overall and signed Gordon Hayward to a four-year, $120MM deal this offseason, working to become competitive in the Eastern Conference. The team last made the postseason in 2016.

Here are some other odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • ESPN’s Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz obtained footage of both G League Ignite scrimmages from last week, dissecting how each player performed against the veterans and what’s ahead for the team. The decision-makers within the G League curiously opted not to publicly live-stream the games or release any footage, though the pair of ESPN scribes managed to examine the pros and cons for top 2021 prospects such as Jalen Green, Jonathan Kuminga and Isaiah Todd.
  • Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic explores which team owners are the NBA’s best and worst, tallying opinions from various league insiders. Steve Ballmer (Clippers), Micky Arison (Heat) and Mark Cuban (Mavericks) ranked in the top three, while Vivek Ranadive (Kings), Robert Sarver (Suns) and James Dolan (Knicks) finished in the bottom three. Among the league insiders polled were front office members and agents from around the league.
  • Ben Pickman of Sports Illustrated takes a deep dive into the NBA’s rookie transition program, which, like many other things, has been complicated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. “Things are all moving parts right now, but you just gotta kinda go on the fly and that’s all us rookies have been used to the whole time,” Kings rookie Tyrese Haliburton explained. “We’ve been going on the fly since March. It’s just kinda a part of it.”

And-Ones: Fans In Arenas, W. Chandler, 2021 Draft, More

For the time being, only five teams – the Jazz, Pelicans, Magic, Rockets, and Grizzlies – are continuing with their plans to have some fans in arenas when the regular season begins, sources tell David Aldridge of The Athletic.

The Mavericks and Heat each confirmed today that they won’t have fans for their preseason games, per Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (Twitter link) and Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Miami also won’t host fans for its Christmas Day game, as Chiang notes.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • The NBA intends to administer a daily point-of-care, rapid coronavirus testing system for the 2020/21 season, according to Shams Charania and Fred Katz of The Athletic (Twitter links). Those tests would return results within 30 minutes in teams’ home markets and within 90 minutes on the road. In the event of invalid results, the player would undergo another rapid test at least 30 minutes after the first one and could participate in team activities while awaiting the result, sources tell The Athletic.
  • Veteran forward Wilson Chandler is expected to leave Zhejiang Guangsha, his team in China, a source tells Sportando. Chandler, who finished the 2019/20 season with Brooklyn, signed to play in the Chinese Basketball Association in the fall. It’s unclear whether or not his reported exit is related to an NBA opportunity.
  • ESPN’s Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz have published their first list of the top 100 prospects for the 2021 NBA draft. Oklahoma State point guard Cade Cunningham leads the way, followed by USC’s Evan Mobley and Jalen Green of the G League Ignite.
  • Speaking of Green and the Ignite, they’re scheduled to scrimmage on December 15 and 17 against a group of veteran G Leaguers, according to Givony (all Twitter links). It’s unclear whether or not those games will be streamed, but NBA teams will get access to the film, according to Givony, who says Isaiah Briscoe, Tariq Owens, and Bryce Alford will be among the vets scrimmaging against the Ignite.

And-Ones: 2021 Draft, NBAGL, New Coaches, Training Camp Rosters

With the 2020 NBA draft in the rear view, several draft experts have begun previewing what promises to be a loaded 2021 draft class.

Jonathan Givony of ESPN supplies his top 60 best prospects, noting that the race for pole position among them remains fairly open. In his own top 60 list, Sam Vecenie of The Athletic observes that the draft is heavy in wings, always a position of need in the league. Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report comments in his top 30 ranking that NBA scouts believe several prospects in 2021 sport All-Star potential.

Oklahoma State point guard Cade Cunningham, G League Ignite shooting guard Jalen Green and Kentucky shooting guard Brandon Boston Jr. comprise the top three selections of all three draft prognosticators, though the ordering of the rest of their lists is fairly different.

There’s more from around the basketball world:

  • Though the fate of the NBA G League’s 2020/21 season has not yet officially been confirmed, a spokesperson for the league informs Jordan Schultz of ESPN (via Twitter) that they are “committed to playing a 2020/21 season.”
  • Several of the NBA’s new coaching hires have immediately faced unexpected challenges even before the 2020/21 NBA season kicks off, writes Joe Vardon of The Athletic. While Stephen Silas grapples with his two Rockets superstars striving for trades out of town, Stan Van Gundy has seen two Pelicans starters get replaced. Meanwhile, new Clippers coach Tyronn Lue and new Sixers coach Doc Rivers will need to integrate significant personnel changes on their rosters.
  • Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer tweets that he has been told that some NBA clubs do not intend to field full training camp rosters this season due to potential coronavirus risks.