With their loss to the Heat last night, the Sixers did everything they could have done to increase their odds at draft “optionality.” Unfortunately, Orlando and the Knicks didn’t do their part, so the Sixers have the third worst record in the league and the Heat have the 10th. That gives them a 17.2% chance at landing the Lakers pick, a 9.1% chance at the Heat pick, and a 15.6% chance at the top pick.
But those percentages are just percentages. What do they actually mean in the real application of the lottery? Some math genius over at r/Sixers figured it all out. User ZeroCool79 ran a million simulations to see how often certain outcomes came up. The Sixers landed the #1 overall pick a predicted 155,726 times, or 15.6%. But there are also two-pick and three-pick scenarios. For example, the Sixers landed their own pick at #5 and the Lakers’ #6 pick in 9.79% of simulations, and they added the Heat’s #11 pick in 2.33% of sims.
Here’s the breakdown of the most likely scenarios, with an “x” meaning no additional pick conveys:
Pulling that Lakers pick doesn’t seem all that far off now. And about those Lakers? Their man in charge, GM Mitch Kupchak, is very different than the Sixers’ man in charge:
Nothing would make me happier than the Sixers taking that man’s first round pick.
[h/t reader Nick]