Can lightning strike again, not quite a year later?
Let's just say there is a 2.3% chance of such an event unfolding for the Clippers on Tuesday night in the NBA draft lottery at Secaucus, N.J.
Frankly, team President Andy Roeser's lucky jacket can work only so many miracles. Should the Clippers hit the lottery jackpot for the second time in as many years, getting the No. 1 draft pick again, there probably would be a movie made about the feat: "The Brotherhood of the Traveling Jacket."
Last year, the Clippers had come in with a 17.7% chance of winning, and then-General Manager and Coach Mike Dunleavy admitted the obvious, saying the team would select Blake Griffin at No. 1. The league didn't like the candor and quietly chided the Clippers, who were apparently supposed to play coy for another month.
So you can assume the winner of the lottery won't be announcing on the spot that it will be selecting John Wall at the NBA draft, which is June 24. Wall, the Kentucky point guard, is the consensus No. 1 choice.
This year, New Jersey has the best odds of winning, at 25%, but the lottery has not cooperated for the worst teams in the league, of late. The last time the team with the worst record in the NBA won the lottery was the Orlando Magic in 2004.
The lottery show, on ESPN at 5 p.m. PDT, almost has a game-show feel, with a stage of nervous executives, led this year by Russian mogul Mikhail Prokhorov, the new owner of the Nets..
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Odds and ends
Percentage chance of each team of receiving No. 1 pick. Lottery determines first three picks. Remaining lottery picks (Nos. 4-14) are determined by inverse standings.
*--* 1. New Jersey (12-70) 25.0% 2. Minnesota (15-67) 19.9% 3. Sacramento (25-57) 15.6% 4. Golden State (26-56) 10.4% 5. Washington (26-56) 10.3% 6. Philadelphia (27-55) 5.3% 7. Detroit (27-55) 5.3% 8. CLIPPERS (29-53) 2.3% 9. New York (29-53) 2.2% (to Utah via Phoenix) 10. Indiana (32-50) 1.1% 11. New Orleans (37-45) 0.8% 12. Memphis (40-42) 0.7% 13. Toronto (40-42) 0.6% 14. Houston (42-40) 0.5% *--*