Wednesday night when the games ended (and frankly for a while before that) it was time for half the NBA to start thinking about the upcoming draft.
Friday the league broke the ties and made it official — here is your 2013 NBA Draft lottery odds. And for everyone in the playoffs, the draft order is set.
1. Orlando 25 percent 2. Charlotte 19.9 percent 3. Cleveland 15.6 percent 4. Phoenix 11.9 percent 5. New Orleans 8.8 percent 6. Sacramento 6.3 percent 7. Detroit 3.6 percent. 8. Washington 2.5 percent 9 Minnesota 1.7 percent 10. Portland 1.1 percent 11. Philadelphia 0.8 percent 12. Toronto 0.7 percent 13 Dallas 0.6 percent 14 Utah 0.5 percent
15. Milwaukee 16. Boston 17. Atlanta 18. Atlanta (via Brooklyn and Houston) 19. Cleveland (via LA Lakers 20. Chicago 21. Utah (via Brooklyn and Golden State) 22. Brooklyn 23. Indiana 24. New York 25. LA Clippers 26. Minnesota (via Houston and Memphis) 27. Denver 28. San Antonio 29. Oklahoma City 30. Phoenix (via LA Lakers and Cleveland and Miami)
Here is how the tiebreakers broke out:
• Detroit (29-53) won a tiebreaker with Washington. • Philadelphia (34-48) won a tiebreaker with Toronto. • Houston (45-37) won a tiebreaker with Chicago and the L.A. Lakers; L.A. Lakers then won a tiebreaker with Chicago. • L.A. Clippers (56-26) won a tiebreaker with Memphis.
The NBA Draft lottery is May 21, the draft itself is June 27.
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“But that award means most valuable to your team. We finished second in the West, which nobody thought we were going to do at the beginning of the year even when everybody was healthy. We were near the top in having the most injuries. We won our division in a division where every single team made the playoffs.
“There’s so many factors. I led the league in total points scored, minutes played. Like I said, I’m not taking anything away from Steph, but I felt I deserved the Most Valuable Player. That stays with me.”
That’s very Kobe Bryant of you to turn that into fuel. Defining the MVP Award is an annual discussion that nobody agrees on.
I could get into how Harden was the old-school, traditional stats MVP, how that ignores how Steve Kerr used Curry, and how that opened up the Warriors’ offense to championship levels. Curry put up numbers, but he was also the distraction, the bright star that Kerr used to open up looks for Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and others. Curry’s strength was not just what he did with the ball in his hands, but his gravity to draw defenders even when he didn’t. Did the Warriors stay healthier than the Rockets? No doubt. Should Curry be penalized for that?
It’s simple for Harden — if he can put up those numbers again, if he can be the fulcrum of a top offense, he will be in the discussion for MVP again. And, if he can lead the Rockets beyond the conference finals, nobody will talk about that MVP snub anyway.