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Atlanta Hawks: 2019 NBA Draft Lottery odds

The Atlanta Hawks are in a prime position to land multiple first round picks in the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery. Let’s break down their odds of doing so.

Before the 2018-19 season started, the Atlanta Hawks had put themselves in position to land three first round picks in the 2019 NBA Draft thanks to some savvy trades the last few seasons.

During the 2016-17 season, the Hawks managed to trade for a protected first from the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Kyle Korver trade. Travis Schlenk also landed a protected first from the Dallas Mavericks during the 2018 NBA Draft when they traded Luka Doncic, the No. 3 pick, so they could select Trae Young at No. 5.

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However, the chances of landing one of those protected picks is up in the air. We’ll discuss those scenarios more shortly, but let’s take a look at the odds of where the Hawks’ guaranteed first round pick could land based on the new NBA Draft Lottery odds:

  • 1st: 10.5%
  • 2nd: 10.5%
  • 3rd: 10.6%
  • 4th: 10.5%
  • 5th: 2.2%
  • 6th: 19.6%
  • 7th: 26.7%
  • 8th: 8.7%
  • 9th: 0.6%

Many of the teams in the NBA can only dream of what Zion Williamson could do for their team, but the Atlanta Hawks, sitting at No. 5 in the draft lottery, currently have a chance to make that a reality. While they only have a 10.5 percent chance of landing that pick, one can only imagine how the tandem of John Collins and Williamson could wreak havoc against the league’s opposing frontcourts. Add in Trae Young’s passing skills and the Hawks have their “Big 3” quicker than many anticipated.

Even if the organization can’t land Zion, they have plenty of options if they land a top-four pick. Overall, the Hawks still have a 42.1 percent chance at landing in the top four, with a chance to snag someone like R.J. Barrett, De’Andre Hunter, Jarrett Culver or Cam Reddish.

The Hawks landing at No. 2 could really shake things up for the draft this year. Ja Morant is regarded as the top point guard in the draft this year and the Hawks aren’t in the market for a point guard with Young around, allowing the possibility for another draft-day trade.

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The Hawks had the fifth-worst record in the league, but have a very slim chance at staying at that spot. However, their pick won’t fall any worse than pick No. 9, with the highest odds of landing the No. 7 or 6 pick, respectively. An NBA team can never have enough wing players, and wherever their pick lands, the Hawks should have a good shot at landing a top wing player if they desire.

The Hawks could add even more talent to their team thanks to one of the protected first round picks they traded for. Unfortunately, the Cavaliers’ pick won’t convey since its top-10 protected. With just 19 wins on the season, they tied the Phoenix Suns for the second-fewest wins of the year and their pick will not be any worse than No. 6, allowing them to keep it thanks to their protection on their selection.

The Dallas Mavericks may not be so fortunate. After only putting a top-five protection on their first round pick for this year, they went on to win 33 games, tying the New Orleans Pelicans and Memphis Grizzlies for the seventh-worst record in the league.

When the tiebreakers were determined for the final order of selection, the Mavericks lost the tie to the Pelicans and Grizzlies, pushing them to ninth in the draft lottery odds. The odds of that pick landing between No. 1 and No. 4 are slim, with a wide range of possible outcomes:

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  • 1st: 4.5%
  • 2nd: 4.8%
  • 3rd: 5.2%
  • 4th: 5.7%
  • 9th: 50.7%
  • 10th: 25.9%
  • 11th: 3.0%
  • 12th: 0.1%
  • 13th: 0.0%

The Mavericks would love the chance to land a wing player just as the Hawks would, but they need to jump into the top four to have that chance. At No. 9, they have a 20.2 percent chance at landing a top-four pick; that would have increased to a 31.9 percent chance if they had won the tiebreaker. If the pick doesn’t end up in the top four, the Hawks would be in great position to have two top-10 draft picks this year.

The Hawks had a top-10 draft pick last year thanks to the famed Doncic-Trae Young swap, but they haven’t had back-to-back years with top-10 selections since the 2006 and 2007 NBA Drafts, which netted them Shelden Williams and Al Horford.

The Hawks have never had two top-10 draft picks in one draft in the modern era either. The closest they came was in 2007 when they selected Horford at No. 3 and Acie Law at No. 11. If you go back to the 1970s, however, they had three straight years of two top-10 draft selections from 1973-75.

Zion Williamson isn’t a pipe dream for the Hawks as it is for many other teams, but even if they can’t land him, the possibility of landing two top-10 talents in this year’s draft could accelerate Atlanta’s rebuild quicker than many thought.

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