Draft Lottery (05/22/13)

By John Ewing

2013 NBA Draft Lottery, the Cleveland Cavaliers win again. Was there any value in betting last night's lottery? Plus NBA Draft prop bets.

The Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA Draft Lottery for the second time in three years. The Cavs, after finishing with the third worst record in the NBA, had only a 15.6% chance of winning the lottery. The Cavaliers winning is far from the biggest upset in lottery history. The Orlando Magic won in 1993 with only 1.5% chance.

Speaking of the Magic, Orlando, who had the best odds to win the lottery at 25%, fell to the number two spot. Since the weighted lottery system was introduced in 1990 only three teams with the worst record have won the lottery.

The surprise of the lottery was the Washington Wizards. The Wizards, who had the eighth worst record in the NBA last season, landed the third pick. Washington only had a 10% chance to acquire a top-3 pick.

The big losers last night were Michael Jordan and the Charlotte Bobcats. Charlotte, after announcing a change from Bobcats to Hornets, fell out of the lottery. The Bobcats had the second best odds in the lottery but slipped to the fourth pick. Last year Charlotte had the best odds of winning but ended up with the second pick.

Below are the lottery odds for each team.

  • Actual: the actual odds each team had of winning the lottery
  • Bovada.lv: the odds posted by Bovada.lv
  • Implied: the odds needed in order to make a wager on Bovada.lv’s odds

There was no value in betting on last night’s lottery as the juice, the amount charged by a bookmaker for their services, took all the value out of the bets. Although, of the top three picks, the Cavaliers odds were the most closely tied to their actual odds.

Team Actual Bovada.lv Implied
Magic 25.0% 5/2 28.6%
Bobcats 19.9% 3/1 25.0%
Cavaliers 15.6% 5/1 16.7%
Suns 11.9% 6/1 14.3%
Pelicans 8.8% 9/1 10.0%
Kings 6.3% 12/1 7.7%
Pistons 4.3% 20/1 4.8%
Wizards 2.8% 25/1 3.8%
Timberwolves 1.7% 40/1 2.4%
Trailblazers 1.1% 50/1 2.0%
76ers 0.8% 66/1 1.5%
Raptors 0.7% 66/1 1.5%
Mavericks 0.6% 75/1 1.3%
Jazz 0.5% 100/1 1.0%

NBA Draft Props

Who will be the 1st Pick?

  • Nerlens Noel, 1/2
  • Otto Porter, 2/1
  • Other Player, 5/1

Who will be the 2nd Pick?

  • Ben McLemore, 2/3
  • Trey Burke, 3/2
  • Victor Oladipo, 5/1

Who will be the 3rd Pick?

  • Otto Porter, 2/3
  • Anthony Bennett, 3/2
  • Nerlens Noel, 5/1

Will Cleveland trade their #1 Pick?

  • Yes, 2/1
  • No, 1/3