The NBA draft lottery is usually among the most important days of each year for the Knicks, a franchise that has finished over .500 only four times in the last 20 seasons. This year, though, we emphasize “usually” in that sentence, because New York played its way out of the lottery by making the playoffs.
The lottery begins at 8:30 pm and is followed by Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals between the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers. Under normal circumstances, right about now, Knicks fans across the globe are talking themselves into the idea that the Knicks will defy the odds and win the first pick, even though New York has only been the beneficiary of a top pick once, which resulted in the selection of Patrick Ewing in 1985.
As you can see in the above graphic, however, the Knicks aren’t among the teams with a chance of nabbing the first pick. It’s the first time the Knicks haven’t been in the lottery since 2014. There will be no Steve Mills or Allan Houston on the dais. No one tied to the Knicks has to prepare for how they should physically react when it turns out the Knicks didn’t move up in the lottery. There needn’t be any ritualistic sacrifices to the basketball gods, so toss away your tecpatl (that’s the term for the sacrificial knife used in Aztec rituals).
Nay, the Knicks know where they stand. New York will have the 19th and 21st overall picks in the first round of this year’s draft, which is scheduled for Thursday, July 29, as well as the 32nd and 58th picks in the second round. Will Leon Rose select actual human beings with those picks? Will he use them in a trade? No one knows for sure yet.
What we do know, however, is that no one associated with the Knicks is biting their fingernails down to a nub right now as we wait for the hours to pass and the lottery to begin. Those other teams can have all the ping pong balls. The Knicks traded them in for a playoff berth.
What will you be doing tonight with the energy you usually use anxiously awaiting the lottery?
This poll is closed
Getting ice cream.
Getting a new tecpatl.
Getting something else.