Lakers make NBA Playoffs; Cavaliers will be able to swap draft picks

With the Utah Jazz falling to the Memphis Grizzlies in Memphis earlier this evening 86-70, the Los Angeles Lakers clinched a playoff berth. They went ahead and defeated the Houston Rockets following the Jazz loss anyway 99-95 in overtime, moving them up to the 7th seed to face the San Antonio Spurs rather than the Oklahoma City Thunder.

What this means for the Cavaliers is that they will be able to exercise their right to swap first-round draft picks with the Lakers in the 2013 draft, gained in the Ramon Sessions (and Christian Eyenga) trade last season that also gave the Cavaliers Luke Walton and a second first-round draft pick last season (24th overall) that helped them acquire Tyler Zeller (17th overall pick). With their extra first-round draft pick this season, acquired in the LeBron James trade, the wine and gold will be able to move up from a would-be 30th pick into a pick between 18th and 20th, depending on coin-flip tiebreakers that will be performed tomorrow.

Furthermore, with the Cavaliers’ loss, ending their season at 24-58, they have the third-best odds at winning the NBA Draft Lottery behind Orlando and Charlotte. Their odds at getting each of the top six picks is outlined below.

1st pick – 15.6%
2nd pick – 15.7%
3rd pick – 15.6%
4th pick – 22.6%
5th pick – 26.5%
6th pick – 4.0%

The Cavaliers also will have the 31st and 33rd picks in the second round of this year’s draft.

Related: A Big Summer For Kyrie, In More Ways Than One

  • Lunch


  • Thanks for accuracy; Sam Amico tweeted tonight that the Laker pick would be 17th, yours sounds more fact based.

  • JNeids

    I think had the lakers lost (after the jazz lost), the pick would have been #17, but since they won they moved up in the standings. (Channelling inner Caddyshack) “Thanks fer nuttin!”

  • Natedawg86

    Where would #17, #31 & #33 move us up to? 10?

  • BenRM

    Best thing to happen to the Cavs in months!

  • Harv 21

    Brilliant, Lakers. Only a stupid organization busts its tail after losing its superstar just to get a horrible playoff matchup and lose decent draft position to boot.

    Losers. Such organizational near-sightedness. See, this is why those guys never win a ring.

  • JHop

    Since we traded the 24, 33, and 34 to move up to 17 last year, that sounds about right. In a deeper draft pool that’s also weaker at the top this year, 10 should be pretty easy to get.

  • mgbode

    don’t get greedy 🙂

  • mgbode

    I would like to thank Mo Williams for his customary big game performance. Memphis wouldn’t have run away with that game if Mo wasn’t on the Jazz 🙂

    now, someone needs to tell GRIII to tank his workouts so he doesn’t creep up into the top10 where he belongs.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Was definitely the best thing for Cleveland last night.

  • Jaker

    Expect a trade in this draft again. We have so many picks in the next few years that if we don’t win the lottery, we still have the fire power to move up

  • Harv 21

    Mo Williams, the gift that keeps on giving.

  • Harv 21

    Agree. And as the team figures out how to be competitive I think they want to start moving away from having so many rookies and second year players at a time. Grant may swing a different sort of deal if we end up with #5 – with his sometimes surprising player evaluations he may think he can swing a deal for a good veteran and still get who he wants.

  • dwhit110

    I know you’re tongue-in-cheek, but just to clarify the Suns owned the Lakers pick if they didn’t make the playoffs so really there was no benefit to them either way.

  • Harv 21

    yeah, I knew that and forgot. But I try to never let the truth get in the way of a good comment.

  • dwhit110

    A philosophy to live by, for sure.

  • saggy

    I say package all the picks for the #1, if possible. We all know that the NBA is about having the best player – not the best player(s). (i know that’s a short-sighted comment, but i hope you get my drift without me having to write a 5-page explanation).

  • JeBron_Lames

    And draft who? Noel would be great for the future, but he’ll be out at least until the middle of the season. That doesn’t help the Cavs win, and they’ll be in the same spot at the end of next season. I say go Porter at hopefully No. 3 or No. 4 and use the rest of the draft picks as bait in a trade for a center, along with Tristan or Andy w/Zeller.

    Besides, the Cavs have the third-best chance of landing the top pick anyway.

  • JeBron_Lames

    Would love RGIII err… GRIII #DraftStrong

  • Steve

    Why would the team with the #1 pick trade down then?

  • Steve

    Robinson is staying at school.

  • mgbode


  • Vindictive_Pat

    Just came here to leave you a support comment and be there for you… just saw on Twitter that GRIII is staying at Michigan. Don’t worry sport, something good will still come of that mid-first round pick!

  • mgbode

    thanks. yeah, it figures the one time I am in full support of a michigan guy something like this happens. i also was leaning more and more towards just taking Smart top3 and figuring things out later. Double Doh!

    oh well, so, about that packaging picks to go after Len…