The Los Angeles Lakers once again had luck on their side with the ping pong balls on Tuesday night securing the second overall selection in the 2017 NBA Draft.
It marked the third straight year that the Lakers landed the No.2 pick in the draft. This also allows for them to keep the 2019 first-round by instead sending their second-round selections from 2017 and 2018 as part of the multi-team deal that had originally landed Dwight Howard in Los Angeles in August 2012.
Meanwhile, the Boston Celtics received the first overall pick, which was originally acquired from the Brooklyn Nets in the trade that involved Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett on the day of the 2013 NBA Draft.
Los Angeles had 46.9 percent chance of keeping their top-three protected first round pick in this year’s draft. The odds were stacked against them with there being more than a coin flip chance of that selection landing outside the top three spots. The most likely position being at the fifth overall selection at 26.5 percent followed by 22.6 percent at the fourth spot.
That said, they wound up at the second spot that had just 15.7 percent chance landing there while holding 15.6 percent chances at both the first and third selections.
— NBA TV (@NBATV) May 17, 2017
This puts the Lakers in an opportune position with plenty of options at their disposal. They will have the chance to take one of the top prospects in this year’s draft class with much of that attention shifting toward taking the local talent in UCLA’s Lonzo Ball. What makes things more interesting in that regard is that both Ball and his father, LaVar Ball, have made it clear that they have a strong desire to remain in Los Angeles.
The Lakers could also dangle the pick in the trade market to gauge the interest across the league that may be used in a potential package to acquire some veteran help such as Chicago Bulls forward Jimmy Butler or Indiana Pacers forward Paul George, who is rumored to have some significant interest in joining his hometown team.
Los Angeles also holds the 28th overall pick, which was acquired in a trade deadline deal from the Houston Rockets in exchange for Lou Williams.
With the draft still over a month away, things could get quite interesting for the Lakers.