Detroit Pistons fall to fifth overall in 2022 NBA Draft Lottery

(Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
(Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /

The 2022 NBA Draft Lottery was held last night to set the draft order for this year’s draft. In the 2021-22 season, the Detroit Pistons finished with one of the three worst records in the NBA securing the best odds at selecting first overall.

The Detroit Pistons had a 14% chance of landing the first overall selection. Outside of the first overall pick, the Pistons had a 40.2% chance of staying in the top three spots, and they could not fall past the seventh selection.

Unfortunately for the Pistons and their representative, Rip Hamilton, they fell from their expected slot at third overall to the fifth overall pick. The Pistons were jumped by Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings who entered the lottery with expected selection at fourth or seventh overall.

This shouldn’t surprise many Pistons fans, as the only time they moved up in the draft lottery was last year when they jumped from second to first overall. Enter Cade Cunningham.

Detroit Pistons fall to fifth overall pick in 2022 NBA Draft Lottery.

The results are disappointing for the Pistons as selecting earlier in the draft is always better. When it comes to this draft class, it is not the end of the world. In this class, there is a definite Tier-1 of Jabari Smith, Chet Holmgren, and Paolo Banchero, but none of these prospects are elite top-tier prospects on the level of recent top picks like Cade Cunningham, Anthony Edwards, or Zion Williamson.

Outside of the top three names, the Pistons should still be able to get a great prospect that, at the very least, should be a solid starter for years to come. The Pistons could look to grab a high upside guard in Jaden Ivey, Shaedon Sharpe, or a high floor starter in Keegan Murrary or Benedict Mathurin. Besides those four, the Pistons will likely also consider athletic defenders Jalen Duren and Jeremy Sochan.

On the Jerami Grant trade front, two outcomes could affect the Pistons. The Portland Trail Blazers pick will be at seventh overall, and they have been rumored to be one of the most prominent players in the Grant trade market this offseason.

In any trade with the Blazers, expect the seventh pick to be a large part of the return where the Pistons can look to add another young player to their core. Another potential suitor for Grant is the Sacramento Kings.

The Kings jumped up to a top-four selection in the draft, making a trade for Grant less likely. The Pistons will likely ask for the fourth overall pick in any potential trade, but that may be too rich for a player of Grant’s caliber, but the Kings may not have any assets worthy of building a package outside of the pick around.

The Pistons falling to fifth is not what they had in mind for the draft lottery. However, Troy Weaver has excelled in the draft in his time at the GM, and the Pistons should still be able to grab another young player to add to their young core of Cade Cunningham, Saddiq Bey, Isiah Stewart, and Killian Hayes.

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The Pistons may even be able to add a second lottery level talent with a potential trade with the Blazers or another lottery team looking to contend in 2023.