The four teams that missed the 2013 Playoffs - the Connecticut Sun, Tulsa Shock, New York Liberty, and San Antonio Silver Stars - will have a chance to receive the first pick in the 2014 Draft, where Stanford forward Chiney Ogwumike is considered by many to be picked at that spot.
Here are the teams and their odds of winning the #1 pick below:
|Team and 2013 Record||Chances (out of 1,000)|
|Connecticut Sun (10-24)||442|
|New York Liberty (11-23)||227|
|Tulsa Shock (11-23)||227|
|San Antonio Silver Stars (12-22)||104|
Another interesting fact here is that three of the teams here have been perennial playoff squads in recent years. However, some of these teams may have been running on the Treadmill of Mediocrity, where they were clearly not the worst teams in the league, but weren't really good enough to win it all. The Silver Stars are in the Lottery for the first time since 2006; the Liberty hasn't been in the Lottery since 2009; the Sun since 2010.
The Tulsa Shock however has been lottery bound for each of the last four seasons and hasn't made the playoffs since 2009, when the franchise was in Detroit. That said, this team has been stockpiling a number of younger assets over the years and has a young core which could make a big push and be a factor in the West not too long from now. Though many are quick to put this team in 6th place for the Western Conference preseason standings no matter what, I at least think that that's not necessarily going to be the case.
The rest of the First Round Draft order
Pretty self explanatory here. Among teams that were tied with overall record, DC "won" a number of tiebreakers against Seattle and ATL to earn the sixth pick in the draft among the three teams that had a .500 record for 2013; Chicago "won" against LA to get the 10th pick among the two 24-10 teams.
A quick look at last year's "Four to Adore" and more!
(h/t ttdomi for that saying that very wise phrase!)
The season ended not too long ago, but let's take a quick recap on the 2013 rookie class, starting with their four lottery draft picks.
The Phoenix Mercury picked center Brittney Griner first. She played well but also dealt with injuries. The Chicago Sky picked forward Elena Delle Donne at #2, who was the Rookie of the Year. The Tulsa Shock selected guard Skylar Diggins third. She had some strong moments but an overall inconsistent rookie campaign.
Last, but not least at #4, the Washington Mystics selected guard Tayler Hill after most people believed that they would have picked a post player. While most of her 2013 season was nothing home to write about, she finished the last third of the season very strong and showed promise that she too could be a somebody in the W when it's all said and done, and hopefully in a DC uniform.
Besides the four players who were lottery picks in the 2013 rookie class, other players such as Kelsey Bone of the New York Liberty and Alex Bentley of the Atlanta Dream made the All-Rookie team. Then other rookies such as Emma Meesseman, Nadirah McKenith of the Washington Mystics and Layshia Clarendon of the Indiana Fever also played a good amount of rotation minutes for their teams. And Tierra Ruffin-Pratt, an undrafted rookie also made the rotation for the Mystics. (This post is starting to show Swish Appeal community biases now...)
While the 2014 rookie class probably won't have the same starpower at the top as the 2013 class did, the teams that have the top picks in this draft still will get a major young piece to their foundations and that player could really help their long term futures and many players. If you just want to use the 2013 rookie class and what they could do for their teams, three of the four lottery picks all made good contributions towards helping get their teams back to the playoffs, and the fourth player, Skylar Diggins, was on a team that still made significant improvements though her team wasn't quite good enough to get to the postseason.
And speaking more about our 2014 WNBA Draft coverage, we got 'ya covered. See the links below for more:
Good luck to the teams in the lottery and to their fans. While it's not a great feeling having a bad regular season, the losing is often a result of teams that need to rebuild their foundations. Adding a new young player to the foundation, in particular, if the player is a number one pick is a great way to help accelerate those rebuilds and that's why those teams, and their fans look forward to this event.