3 things to do if they crash in the NBA Draft Lottery

The Indiana Pacers are guaranteed to pick a prospect with a single-digit pick in the upcoming NBA draft for the first time since 1989, when the team snatched George McCloud with the seventh overall pick. The Pacers, touting fifth-best odds for the grand prize, could be the ones jumping for joy in the draft lottery two weeks later.

However, the lottery is still an aleatory thing. While Indiana has a 42.1 percent chance of making a top-four pick, it could drop to ninth place after the ping-pong balls dictate the draft order. In fact, the Pacers have a 19.6 percent chance of finishing sixth, a 26.7 percent chance of finishing seventh, an 8.7 percent chance of finishing eighth, and a slim 0.6 percent chance of finishing ninth place.

Much of the discussion here about the NBA draft has been approached on the premise that the Pacers make a good pick. But should the worst-case scenario occur, how should the team maneuver in the draft?

1. The Indiana Pacers could try to trade up for a slightly higher pick

The top five in most mock drafts and big boards have remained largely the same. Thus, one could assume that teams that secure a top-five selection would be very happy to keep their respective selections.

However, should the Pacers make, say, an eighth or ninth pick, they could try to trade up at least on the fringes, using their own pick and some sweetener like an expendable hunk to pick up a pick or two bring and acquire a player who fits better and allows him to kill two birds with one stone.

Luckily, Indiana has some valuable assets they could attach to entice teams to trade in for them, like veterans like TJ McConnell, Buddy Hield and Malcolm Brogdon, though splitting up the latter two in a promotion package should only come if that other team also offers instant post in return in addition to selection.

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