NBA Draft: What are the New York Knicks lottery odds?

Find out the time, TV details, and specifics of the New York Knicks odds in the 2020 NBA Draft Lottery.

After finishing with the sixth worst record in the NBA this past season, the New York Knicks will learn where they will select in the upcoming draft after the results of the 2020 NBA Draft lottery are revealed later this week.

When is the NBA Draft Lottery?

The NBA Draft Lottery was rescheduled due to the coronavirus pandemic and will be conducted on Thursday, August 20th at 8:30 PM EST.

The lottery results will decide where the non-playoff teams will pick in the 2020 NBA Draft scheduled for October, 16th.

The lottery will be broadcast on ESPN and available for streaming on WatchESPN apps.

How does the NBA Draft Lottery work?

Based on recent rule changes, there is a drawing for each of the top four picks. Teams are awarded lottery odds in reverse order of their record, with the worst team receiving the best odds, and the team closest to the playoffs having the smallest chance of winning any of the lottery drawings.

Once the first four drawings are complete, the remaining draft order (5-14) is sorted in reverse order of record.

There are fourteen ping-pong balls numbered 1 through 14 that bounce around the lottery machine before popping up to reveal a specific number. Four balls are drawn for each drawing, representing 1,001 possible combinations (one combination is discarded).

Each team is assigned several distinct four-ball combinations. The combinations are allocated based on the odds of each respective team. For example, the Knicks will have more possible winning combinations than the Spurs, who enter the lottery with the 11th worst record.

If detailed numbers matter to you, we will get into the Knicks odds in a minute, but for illustration purposes, the Knicks will have 90 of the possible 1,000 winning combinations for the top pick in the 2020 NBA Draft.

The Knicks can jump to any of the top four picks by winning one of the lottery drawings. They would fall back in the draft if any of the teams behind them in the pre-lottery order wins one of the lottery drawings, given the Knicks don’t win a drawing, themselves.

What are the Knicks lottery odds?

With the sixth worst record this season, the Knicks have the sixth best odds of landing the first overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. Since the NBA flattened the odds before last year’s lottery, the difference between having the best odds (14%) and the sixth best odds (9%) for winning the prized top pick is not as wide as it once was.


New York Knicks lottery history, Knicks Lottery Odds 2020 (graphic via Jeffrey Bellone)

The Knicks have a 9% chance of picking first, and roughly a 9% chance of picking either second, third, or fourth. Collectively, they have a 37.2% chance of selecting within the top four picks.

Because the lottery draws for each of the first four picks, the Knicks cannot jump to the fifth spot. That is the only draft position where they cannot land out of the top ten spots.

The Knicks have a 8.6% chance of remaining in the sixth spot. They have a 29.8% chance of falling back to seventh and a 20.6% chance of dropping back to eighth. That means there is a 50.4% chance they select either 7th or 8th.

In the worst case scenarios, the Knicks have a 3.7% chance of slipping to ninth, and 0.1% chance of finishing 10th.

What picks do the Knicks have in the 2020 NBA Draft?

Besides their lottery pick, the Knicks will select late in the first round after acquiring the 27th overall pick from the Los Angeles Clippers in a 2020 deadline deal that sent Marcus Morris out west.

They will also draft early in the second round with the 38th pick, which was secured  from Charlotte in the Willy Hernangomez trade. New York’s own second round pick (36th) will go to Philadelphia, ironically, from a 2015 trade that gave the Knicks the second round pick they used to originally select Hernangomez.

Keep your fingers crossed, Knicks fans!