Atlanta Hawks: Checking in on 2019 NBA Draft Slots Early in the Season

Zion Williamson #1 of the Duke Blue Devils to Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Zion Williamson #1 of the Duke Blue Devils to Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) /

A quick peek at the Atlanta Hawks NBA Draft Lottery positioning after almost 30 games played in the 2018-19 season.

The Atlanta Hawks are currently the second-worst team in the NBA with a record of 7-23. After an inexplicable three-game winning streak from the Phoenix Suns, which has pushed their overall record on the year to 7-24, they are tied with the Chicago Bulls for second-worst record, and the Cleveland Cavaliers fall in as the fourth-worst team with a record of 8-23.

These four teams combined with the New York Knicks, who sit with the fifth-worst record at 9-23, make up the cellar in both conferences. The Washington Wizards, who are just barely outside the Eastern Conference Playoff picture right now, have the next-worst record at 12-19.

With all that being said, the Atlanta Hawks are not looking at many wins for the rest of the season, especially if they trade away veterans to accrue more assets (which is exceedingly likely). As such, now is as good a time as any to explore the 2019 NBA Draft picks that the Hawks will be able to explore come next June.

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The 2019 Draft will be the first year in which the odds are flattened, meaning the Top 3 (or bottom 3 depending on your viewpoint) teams don’t have the best odds by far. The 2019 Draft odds will feature far more spread-out odds at landing a great pick.

The full odds are listed at great NBA Draft resource, where the Atlanta Hawks currently sit with the third-best odds to land the #1 overall pick at 14 percent. As one of the three worst teams in the league currently, the Hawks also have a 52.1 percent chance at a Top 4 pick.

It must be noted that a Top 3 pick in this year’s draft would be ideal as nabbing any one of Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett or Cam Reddish from Duke University’s Big 3 freshman would be a huge boon for this talent-strapped team.

It’s not all about the top pick, though. While the Cleveland Cavaliers Top 10 protected pick from the Kyle Korver will likely turn into two second-rounders down the road, the Dallas Mavericks pick will certainly convey this season, and the Hawks must hope that (fleetingly former Hawk) Luka Doncic can’t carry them to the playoffs, as that pick will suffer if he does.

Beyond that, the Hawks currently have three second-round picks to play with: their own (currently 31st), the Charlotte Hornets (currently 42nd) and the Los Angeles Lakers (currently 52nd).

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Those second-rounders could be packaged together to move up if necessary, or the Hawks could hope a high-upside prospect falls in their laps in the second round – as multiple players do every year it seems.