No lottery luck: Detroit Pistons will pick 7th overall in 2020 NBA draft

Detroit Free Press

Detroit Pistons general manager Troy Weaver didn’t snap the organization’s historic lack of luck in the NBA draft lottery. Regardless, the Pistons will have a high draft pick as they prepare for a pivotal offseason. 

The Pistons will have the No. 7 pick in the 2020 draft scheduled for Oct. 16, after Weaver — hired in June as the Pistons’ new general manager — represented the organization in the league’s first virtual lottery. Minnesota won the No. 1 pick.

The Pistons entered the lottery with the fifth-best overall draft odds and a 10.5% chance at the first pick, but had 26.7% odds of falling to No. 7. They were jumped by Charlotte and Chicago.

Here’s the 2020 NBA draft order:

1. Minnesota

2. Golden State

3. Charlotte

4. Chicago

5. Cleveland

6. Atlanta

7. Detroit 

8. New York

9. Washington

10. Phoenix

11. San Antonio

12. Sacramento

13. New Orleans

14. Boston (from Memphis)

[ Who should Pistons take in NBA draft? Best player available ought to be motto ]

For an organization that has made nine lottery appearances since 2010, Thursday represented more of the same. The Pistons have never improved their pick slot through the lottery with their own pick. In 2003, the Pistons drafted Darko Milicic second overall after Memphis’ draft pick was conveyed to them. 

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Despite the underwhelming outcome, the draft pick still gives Weaver and the rest of the front office a good opportunity to dictate the course of Detroit’s rebuild. After trading Andre Drummond before February’s trade deadline and waiving Reggie Jackson soon after, the Pistons have been angling toward remaking their roster. 

This year’s draft lacks a player who has bonafide superstar potential, so there will be plenty of speculation as to how the Pistons will use their pick. 

If they want a guard, there are several players projected to go within Detroit’s range — Iowa State standout Tyrese Haliburton and French prospect Killian Hayes perhaps being the most popular among draft pundits. Reigning national player of the year Obi Toppin, defensive-minded Auburn forward Isaac Okoro and Israeli-Serbian forward Deni Avdija could also be options. 

[ Pistons mailbag: Talking NBA draft, Luke Kennard’s future ]

Along with about $30 million in cap space, the pick will help Weaver hit the ground running as he enters his first offseason in Detroit.

Contact Omari Sankofa II at Follow him on Twitter @omarisankofa. The Free Press has started a new digital subscription model. Here’s how you can gain access to our most exclusive Pistons content.  

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