The 2023 NBA draft lottery takes place in Chicago on Tuesday night, and both NBA fans and the larger basketball world wait in anticipation for a drawing likely to influence the trajectory of the NBA landscape. The reason for all the excitement? A prodigious French talent named Victor Wembanyama, the presumed No. 1 pick in June’s draft. With skills perhaps never seen in a person of his size, the 7-foot-5 Wembanyama might very well be the most hyped NBA prospect since LeBron James in 2003. And it’s not only Wembanyama — other top prospects such as Alabama’s Brandon Miller and G League Ignite’s Scoot Henderson also have teams excited about their potential.
To prepare you for the drawing, here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the 2023 NBA draft lottery, including how it works, what time it takes place and where you can watch it.
How does the NBA lottery work?
The NBA employs an intricate lottery system to decide the top-four draft positions, which involves drawing numbered pingpong balls allocated to specific teams. The drawing process happens behind closed doors, where numbers are picked to establish the first four slots in the draft.
This lottery design provides the three teams with the worst regular-season records a 14% probability of attaining the top spot, while all of them have a 52.1% chance of landing in the top four picks. Since only the first four positions are assigned through the lottery, the team with the worst record (Detroit) cannot fall below fifth place in a worst-case scenario. Similarly, the second-worst team (Houston) can fall only to the sixth position, and so forth. As one moves down the list, the chances of teams moving up the draft order progressively decrease.
Here is a table illustrating the likelihood of each of the 14 participating teams winning the lottery:
2023 NBA Draft Lottery Odds
|San Antonio Spurs||22-60||14%|
|Portland Trail Blazers||33-49||10.5%|
|New Orleans Pelicans||42-40||0.5%|
|* This pick will go to New York if Dallas falls outside top 10|
|** This pick will go to Orlando if Chicago falls outside top 4|
How to watch the 2023 NBA draft lottery
Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Who is Victor Wembanyama?
play9:23SC Feature presents: ‘The Future’ – Victor Wembanyama
Take a look into Victor Wembanyama’s journey to becoming a global phenom with an opportunity to become the first Frenchman to be drafted No. 1 overall.
All eyes are on the 7-foot-5 prospect from France, the 2023 projected top pick.
Inside the decade-long plan to bring Victor Wembanyama to NBA glory
How landing Victor Wembanyama could shape each lottery team
Preparing for the NBA’s Victor Wembanyama revolution
This Victor Wembanyama play has an NBA executive wishing his team had tanked
When is the 2023 NBA draft?
Thursday, June 22, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Who else will be in the 2023 NBA draft?
Scoot Henderson, G League Ignite: G League shuts down projected No. 2 NBA pick Scoot Henderson
Brandon Miller, Alabama: 2023 NBA draft: How top prospects fared in the NCAA tournament
Amen and Ausar Thompson, Overtime Elite: The Thompson twins are ready to introduce themselves to the NBA
Check out our full Best available draft board for more.