How Many Picks Are In The NBA Draft?

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If you’ve been trying to figure out how many picks are in the NBA Draft then there’s no need to worry because the whole process is a little confusing at first!  However, in this article we will explain many aspects of the NBA Draft so it’s clear and easy to understand. 

How Many Picks Are In The NBA Draft?

There are usually a total of 60 picks in the NBA draft however due to special circumstances (Miami, Chicago and Milwaukee forfeits) only 58 picks will be made in 2022. During the NBA draft the teams take it in turns to make draft picks. A ‘pick’ refers to a player that has been chosen by a team in the draft. During the NBA Draft the teams are able to obtain the rights to young upcoming amateur and professional players from the NBA G- League, US colleges as well as eligible overseas prospects.

How Many Players Are Chosen In The First Round?

In the first round of the NBA draft a total of 30 players are usually picked. This makes up half of the total drafting process and plays a vital role in revitalizing the line ups of the NBA teams.  

The NBA Draft is made up of two separate rounds. Each individual round usually consists of 30 picks. In each round, every team is allotted one pick although sometimes via trades they can pick more or choose not to make a pick at all.  During the draft teams are able to trade players for money or other players that were picked in the draft.

How Many Lottery Picks Are In The NBA Draft?

There are a total of 14 lottery picks in the NBA Draft. An NBA Draft lottery drawing event is held annually and is used to fairly determine the order in which the 14 eligible lottery teams can make their draft pick. That’s why if your team wins the lottery they will have the first choice of pick during the draft!  

Winning the lottery can make a huge difference to the fortunes of the team and puts them in the best possible bargaining position if they want to trade players with other teams. Of the 14 lottery picks the drawing is held to determine which teams will receive the top 4 picks. This is highlighted for the excitement and benefit of fans.  

Why Did The NBA Introduce The New Lottery System For The Draft Pick?

Draft picks used to be determined by a coin flip. However, after the 1984 controversy surrounding the Houston Rockets it was decided that a new system had to be designed. This is because there were accusations swirling around the sport that claimed teams were deliberately losing games in order to get the first pick in the next draft. 

The first NBA draft that included a lottery component took place in 1985. The NBA Draft lottery allows teams that didn’t make it into the playoffs in the previous year a chance to obtain the rights to the top rated incoming amateur or professional players. The lottery process is fairly complex but it’s still an important component of the drafting process and so it’s vital to understand.

The Lottery Process

The lottery process consists of a machine mixing up 14 ping pong balls. Then one is selected at random. The process is repeated for each of the next three balls and once they are all picked by the machine the team which was assigned that particular combination of numbers is the winner. 

The process is repeated to select the order of the remaining teams for the second, third and fourth picks. Picks 5 to 14 are awarded to the remaining lottery teams based on reverse regular season standings.

There are a total of 1,001 possible outcomes from the combinations of the numbered ping pong balls in the lottery. There are only 14 combinations that are selected. The winning lottery pick teams will have the first choice of selecting a draft pick with the second pick going next, and so on. 

To make the selection process fair the teams with the three worst regular season records has exactly the same odds of winning the draw. Each team has a 14% chance of winning. The fourth and fifth worst regular season records has an 11.5% chance of winning. For the remaining lottery teams the percentages continue to decline.

The lottery is an important opportunity. Therefore the fairness of the process is crucial. This is why some of the rules appear to be a little complex but it’s simply to ensure transparency and fairness. 

How Does The NBA Draft Work For Players?

As of now, the draft is open to eligible players ages 19 and up. So those who are picked by a top team can look forward to an amazing career as a professional athlete at the highest levels. 

The NBA draft represents a fantastic opportunity for aspiring basketball players and being selected in the draft is a gateway to playing into the most prestigious league in the world.  

An Exciting Start To The Season

The atmosphere is buzzing on draft night as teams jostle to obtain the rights to the best new players; while for the players themselves it could herald the start to a legendary career on the hardwood. 

Although the draft is a little complicated for newbies and figuring out how many picks there are in the NBA Draft can be confusing at first glance, if you break it down it’s very simple to remember.  

There are usually 30 picks made in the two separate rounds of the draft which means that overall there are 60 picks each year. However, in 2022 there will only be 58 picks. The lottery picks help struggling teams to improve their lineups so the whole occasion is extremely important for the team’s owners, management, players, pundits and fans alike.

So make sure not to miss the draft to see how the new players are being selected and to learn how this might change the fortunes of the teams in the league. As the new players enter the big leagues some of them will have a massive influence on the future success of their teams.