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Knicks, Thunder, Magic, Hornets big winners in 2021 NBA Draft tiebreakers

Spike Lee at Knicks-Hawks Game 1

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 23: Director, Spike Lee celebrates during Round 1, Game 1 of the 2021 NBA Playoffs between the Atlanta Hawks and the New York Knicks on May 23, 2021 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

The Knicks lost Game 1 to the Hawks in their first-round series.

But New York bested Atlanta – and the Lakers and Trail Blazers – in tiebreakers for the 2021 NBA Draft.

The NBA held random drawings today to determine the order of three sets of first-round picks:

  • 19/20: Knicks, Hawks
  • 21/22/23: Knicks (via Mavericks), Lakers, Rockets (via Trail Blazers)
  • 25/26: Clippers, Nuggets

The league also held drawings to determine lottery seeds among three sets of tied teams:

  • 4/5: Thunder, Cavaliers
  • 8/9/10: Bulls (Magic), Kings, Pelicans
  • 11/12: Hornets, Spurs

Oklahoma City and Cleveland will each have equal odds of getting each of the top four picks. The Thunder will just pick ahead of the Cavs if neither team gets drawn in the lottery. Both teams have a 45% chance of picking top four.

Likewise, Chicago, Sacramento and New Orleans will each have equal odds of moving into each of the to four picks. All three teams have a 20% chance of landing top four. But the Bulls owe the Magic a top-four-protected pick. So, this tiebreaker really benefits Orlando.

Because there are an odd number of lottery combinations for the No. 11 and No. 12 lottery seeds to split, Charlotte gains a slight edge over San Antonio for moving into the top four. Far more likely, Charlotte will now draft No. 11 and San Antonio No. 12.

The lottery is scheduled for June 22 to completely resolve the draft order.

For now, here are the mostly set picks 15-60:

First round

15. Wizards

16. Celtics

17. Grizzlies

18. Rockets or Thunder (via Heat)*

*Houston will receive this pick if its own first-rounder lands top four (and therefore isn’t conveyed to Oklahoma City). Otherwise, the Thunder will get this pick.

19. Knicks

20. Hawks

21. Knicks (via Mavericks)

22. Lakers

23. Rockets (via Trail Blazers)

24. Rockets (via Bucks)

25. Clippers

26. Nuggets

27. Nets

28. 76ers

29. Suns

30. Jazz

Second round

31. Bucks (via Rockets)

32. Knicks (via Pistons via Clippers via 76ers)

33. Magic

34/35. Pelicans (via Cavaliers via Hawks) or Thunder

34/35. Pelicans (via Cavaliers via Hawks) or Thunder

36. Thunder (via Timberwolves via Warriors)

37. Pistons (via Raptors via Nets)

38/39/40. Pelicans, Kings or Bulls

38/39/40. Pelicans, Kings or Bulls

38/39/40. Pelicans, Kings or Bulls

41/42. Spurs or Pistons (via Hornets via Knicks)

41/42. Spurs or Pistons (via Hornets via Knicks)

43. Pelicans (via Wizards via Bucks via Cavaliers via Jazz)

44. Nets (via Pacers)

45. Celtics

46. Raptors (via Grizzlies via Kings)

47 Raptors (via Warriors via Jazz via Pelicans)

48. Hawks (via Heat via Kings via Trail Blazers)

49. Nets (via Hawks)

50. 76ers (via Knicks)

51. Grizzlies (via Trail Blazers via Mavericks via Pistons via Cavaliers)

52. Pistons (via Lakers via Kings via Rockets via Pistons)

53. Pelicans (via Mavericks)

54. Pacers (via Bucks via Rockets via Cavaliers)

55. Thunder (Nuggets via Warriors via 76ers)

56. Hornets (via Clippers)

57. Hornets (via Nets)

58. Knicks (via 76ers)

59. Nets (via Suns)

60. Pacers (via Jazz)

Tied teams will pick in inverse order in the second round from the first round. So, the lottery will effectively determine the 34/45 and 38/39/40 picks.