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Wednesday May 24, 2006 12:10 am

Toronto Raptors Win NBA Draft Lottery

Posted by Dennis Velasco Categories: Drafts, NBA,

Toronto RaptorsThe NBA Draft Lottery was held in the midst of the Miami Heat/Detroit Pistons playoff game, and no matter who ended up winning the game, the Toronto Raptors were going to be winners too as the lottery played itself out in front of a national audience on ESPN.  The Raptors beat the odds, only having an 8.8% chance of getting the first pick. 

The Portland Trailblazers having the worst record during the regular season, and therefore having the best odds of winning the lottery, actually fell all the way to picking number four.  Tough luck.  The Chicago Bulls will pick second overall thanks to a trade of Eddy Curry to the New York Knicks before the season started.  Excellent luck.  The Charlotte Bobcats will pick third.

On top of having the number one overall draft pick, the Raptors also have some salary cap flexibility and it will be interesting to see what they do.  With PF/C Chris Bosh as the cornerstone for the franchise, to go along with SF/PF Charlie Villanueva and PG Mike James, the Raptors can improve themselves in a hurry.

At this point, there is no consensus number one overall draft pick, but the projected top players will be Gonzaga’s Adam Morrison, Texas’ LaMarcus Aldridge, and LSU’s Tyrus Thomas.  Don’t be surprised if the Raptors go across the Atlantic and choose PF Andrea Bargnani from Italy, considering the new Assistant GM, Maurizio Gherardini is coming from being a GM for Italy’s powerhouse Benetton Treviso.

The NBA Draft takes place on June 28.

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