By Clay Ihlo
It seems that every year, prior to the NBA Draft the team that had the balls bounce its way and received the top pick is set to put all its cookies into one jar. Same goes for most of the other lottery teams — everything is riding on our pick! And for the life of me I don’t know why.
I understand it’s to create new hype for a team with a bad record the previous year, but history has shown that lottery picks aren’t all they’re cracked up to be in the long run.
Do you realize that in the past 25 years only two No. 1 picks have won a championship with the team that drafted them? Their names are Tim Duncan and David Robinson.
There have been a few top picks to win a title in that span, i.e. LeBron James and Shaquille O’ Neal, but for the most part those players never live up to the hype.
And it’s not just about winning a title either. Take the 2007 draft for example. Of the 30 picks in the first round, only two, Kevin Durant and Al Horford, have made an All-Star team during their time in the league. Same goes for the year before. LaMarcus Aldridge, Brandon Roy and Rajon Rondo are the only picks from the entire draft to make an All-Star appearance.
Now, I’m not suggesting the draft is useless. It’s obviously a great opportunity for teams to select a young role player for their squad, but the stock some teams put into their lottery picks just isn’t justified.
So take notice of the player your team picks up in the draft, but don’t be shocked if they aren’t able to live up to expectations.
What’s your take on the NBA draft? Should teams build via the draft like the Oklahoma City Thunder or trade for proven commodities like the last two champions (Mavericks and Heat)? Send your thoughts on twitter @ETFinalScore or ClayIhloETFS; via email to firstname.lastname@example.org; or on our Facebook page facebook.com/ETFinalScore.