Detroit Pistons: Lottery odds with one month to go in the season

Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Pistons are straddling the thin line between trying to win games and develop their young players without blowing their lottery odds in a losing season that was more dedicated to development than winning.

Detroit has won six of their last nine games, and all of them (including the losses) have been close, which is exactly what we wanted from a team led by Rookie of the Year candidate Cade Cunningham and a cast of young players still trying to evolve.

They have an outside chance of surpassing their preseason win predictions, but even if they don’t, the Pistons have gotten solid development from Cunningham, Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart and even Killian Hayes, who was producing more off the bench before his untimely injury.

Jerami Grant has adjusted his game since returning, Marvin Bagley III is finding new life in Detroit and things are looking up in the Motor City.

light. Related Story. Cade Cunningham or Trae Young? Which guard would you rather have?

But the Detroit Pistons would still love to get a top-3 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft so that they can land one of Chet Holmgren, Jabari Smith or Paolo Banchero, who are considered the consensus top guys.

So here’s where they stand with just under a month remaining in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Detroit Pistons lottery odds: One month to go

If you are curious, I wrote about how the Pistons’ remaining strength of schedule stacks up against the other cellar dwellers and not much has changed, though the Rockets have gotten some of their tougher games out of the way and have an easier schedule down the stretch.

But by climbing to the third-worst record, the Pistons can now drop to the 7th pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, which would be their worst-case scenario.

Here are their odds for each pick with 16 games and just under a month left in the season.

  • #1: 14%
  • #2: 13.4%
  • #3: 12.7%
  • #4:  12%
  • #5:  14.8%
  • #6:  26%
  • #7:  12%

As you can see, the Pistons still have a 52.1 percent chance of landing in the top-4, but it’s basically a coin flip and the highest odds for any single pick would be 26 percent for the 6th.

I think most fans would be happy if the Detroit Pistons stayed in the top-4, but it is pretty much 50/50 and there is not much they can do to raise their odds, as they are already in the bottom three.

Dropping to the second-worst or even worst record would make the worst-case scenario a 6th or 5th pick, but in a draft that really only has three consensus guys, the difference between the 5th and 7th pick will be negligible.

If Detroit could stay competitive but still pile on a few losses to stay in the bottom three, that would be the ideal ending to another losing season.

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