(CBS) With a widely utilized approach taken to a shameless extent, the Philadelphia 76ers have spent the last few seasons tanking and set themselves up to do so again next year. They haven’t even been shy about it, with an owner saying a 2013-’14 campaign that featured a 19-63 record was “a huge success” and a front office that drafted two players in June who have high potential but don’t figure to impact the team in any way next season.
Which is all why the 76ers are now upset that the NBA is considering revamping the draft lottery in a manner that would balance out the odds so the worst team or teams wouldn’t have the highest chances of landing the top pick. While nothing is finalized, the worst five or six teams would essentially have the same odds of landing the No. 1 pick, ESPN.com has reported. Currently, the worst team has a 25 percent chance of nabbing the top pick, with odds declining from there, with the fifth-worst team sporting an 8.8 percent chance.
The proposed changes have been discussed by many of the NBA’s most important figures, and Philadelphia is expressing a “strong objection” for any such new policy to take effect next season, ESPN.com reported.
The rough draft of this plan was met with opposition by 76ers management, which is in the midst of a multiseason rebuilding project that is dependent on a high pick next year. The 76ers, sources said, are hoping to get the NBA to delay the plan’s implementation for at least a year because it would act as a de facto punishment while just playing by the rules that have been in place.
The 76ers, however, may struggle to gain support from Silver or fellow teams for holding off on the changes. Philadelphia’s planned sink to the bottom has caused a drag on revenues in one of the league’s largest markets and has upset some other teams, sources said.
Moral of the story in all this? Don’t mess around with commissioner Adam Silver. He’s not cool with anything that reflects poorly on his sport, and purposely setting yourself up to lose is a bad look.