(CBS) An NBA draft lottery reform proposal that would have discouraged tanking and given the four worst teams an equal opportunity at landing the top draft pick has been voted down at the NBA’s Board of Governors’ meeting, Yahoo Sports and Grantland reported Wednesday.
As recently as 24 hours ago, it was thought the draft reform idea would easily pass, but when the owners got in a room, 13 of them voted against it, according to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Grantland’s Zach Lowe. For it to pass, 23 of the 30 votes needed to be in favor.
The Bulls were one of the teams to vote against the reform. The Suns, 76ers, Thunder, Pelicans, Pistons, Heat, Bucks, Spurs, Jazz, Hawks, Wizards and Hornets were the other 12, Yahoo Sports reported. Reports indicated the reason it didn’t pass was because some of the unintended consequences that could arise from the revision hadn’t been fully explored and studied yet.
The proposed lottery reform was believed to have been another advantage for big-market teams over small-market teams. In general, big-market teams have more success because they have less fear of reaching the luxury tax and an easier time luring top free agents. And under the lottery reform proposal, the smaller-market teams wouldn’t have as superior of a chance to acquire the top draft talent when they are bad.
Lottery reform has been a hot-button issue that’s drawn more attention since the Philadelphia 76ers have actively fielded about as bad of a team as they possibly could and then not been shy about discussing their strategy, with the belief that it takes a true superstar to compete for championships and that acquiring one in the draft was their best path.
Under the current system, the worst team has a 25 percent chance of nabbing the No. 1 pick in the draft, and it can’t fall further than fourth. In the reform proposal, the four worst teams would all have an 12 percent chance of getting the top pick, with the fifth-worst team having a 11.5 percent chance and the odds decreasing from there for others, according to Yahoo Sports. The worst team also could’ve fallen as far as seventh in the draft.