The National Basketball Association draft is an annual U.S. event in which the National Basketball Association's (NBA) thirty teams can select young players who wish to join the league. These players usually come from college level, but in recent drafts a greater number of international and high school players have been drafted. As of the 2006 NBA Draft, however, high school players will no longer be eligible for selection.


The NBA draft is divided into two rounds. The two rounds are vital to every team. The order of selections is based on certain rules. The first turns of the draft belong to the fourteen teams that did not enter the playoffs in that year's season. These teams participate in a lottery that determines the spot each team will have in the draft.

The next sixteen spots in the draft are reserved for the teams that made it into that season's playoffs. The order of these sixteen teams' selection is determined by their regular-season win-loss record, going from worst to best. Therefore, the team with the best record selects last. Note that the team with the best record is not necessarily the champion; for example, in the 2004 NBA Draft, the last pick did not go to the NBA champion Detroit Pistons, but rather to the Indiana Pacers (this is unlike the NFL Draft, in which the Super Bowl champion always draws the final selection of the first round).

This same order is carried on to the second round. However, teams are allowed to trade their future draft picks in the same way as they would current players. Therefore, the structure of the second round can sometimes be very different from that of the first round because of trades.

Each team in the league is required to make at least one selection during the entire draft. Also, league rules prohibit a team from trading away future first-round picks in consecutive years. This rule was created partially as a reaction to the practices of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the early 1980s. Ted Stepien, who owned the team from 1980 to 1983, made a series of trades for players of questionable value that cost the team several years of first-round picks. The trades nearly destroyed the franchise; the NBA pressured Stepien into selling out, and in order to get a solid local owner (Gordon Gund), the league had to sweeten the deal by giving the Cavaliers several future bonus draft picks.

Selection process編輯

All U.S. players are automatically eligible upon the end of their college eligibility. Through 2005, U.S. players were also allowed to declare eligibility for the draft at any time between high school graduation and the completion of college eligibility. International players could declare eligibility in the calendar year of their 18th birthday, or later.

Starting with the 2006 NBA Draft, the eligibility rules have changed:

  • All players, regardless of nationality, must be at least 19 years old during the calendar year of the draft.
  • A U.S. player must also be at least one year removed from the graduation of his high school class.

This age limit for draftees is part of the new collective bargaining agreement between the league and its players union.

The NBA has established two draft declaration dates. All players who wish to be drafted, and are not automatically eligible, must declare their eligibility on or before the first declaration date. After this date, prospective draftees may attend NBA pre-draft camps and individual team workouts to show off their skills and obtain feedback regarding their draft positions. A player may withdraw his name from consideration from the draft at any time before the final declaration date, which is one week before the draft. A player who declares for the draft will lose his college eligibility, even if he is not drafted, if any of the following is true:

  • The player fails to withdraw his name from the draft prior to the final declaration date.
  • The player signs with an agent.
  • The player has declared for and withdrawn from the draft in any previous year.

When a player is selected in the first round of the draft, the team that selected him is required to sign him to at least a one-year contract. Players selected in the second round are "owned" by the team for three years, but the teams are not required to sign them.

Players selected earlier in the draft are generally perceived to be better players than those selected later, but there is always a level of uncertainty around the selections. Past drafts are filled with examples of late-pick superstars and early-pick busts. Perhaps the most famous example of a draft bust came in 1984, when the Portland Trail Blazers selected Sam Bowie with the second pick. Bowie went on to become a journeyman with an injury-riddled career, while the third pick, the Chicago Bulls drafted, Michael Jordan, is generally recognized as one of the greatest players of all time.

First overall picks since 1979編輯

Past NBA drafts編輯

See also編輯

External links編輯