Ryan's Place

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Magic Receive Pick 11 in Lottery



From Brian Schmitz at The Orlando Sentinel:

As the man who will represent the Orlando Magic in the NBA draft lottery, Pat Williams said, tongue firmly in cheek, that he felt "on top of my game in mid-February."

The club was foundering and needed some of Williams' time-proven luck in the lottery. Then the Magic won 16 of their last 22 games and made a playoff push.

"There was a real danger of not making the trip to Secaucus, which is lovely this time of year," said Williams, the club's senior vice president.

The Magic find themselves back in the lottery drawing tonight in Secaucus, N.J., with 13 other non-playoff teams for the third consecutive May.

"I think they're putting me in the Elgin Baylor Suite," cracked Williams, referring to the Los Angeles Clippers' vice president of basketball operations who was a lottery fixture until the Clippers made the playoffs this season.

Finishing 36-46 for the second consecutive season -- the 11th- worst record among the 14 lottery-eligible teams -- the Magic have just an 8-in-a-1,000 chance (0.8 percent) of winning the No. 1 pick.

They are virtually in the same position as last season.

Orlando stayed at No. 11 and chose Spanish forward Fran Vazquez, who elected to stay in Spain.

This time, the Magic hope to emerge from the June 28 draft with a player who'll actually report in October. Although they say they'll take the best player, the Magic especially will look at shooting guards and a power player.

Shooting guards Rodney Carney (Memphis), Ronnie Brewer (Arkansas), Randy Foye (Villanova), J.J. Redick (Duke) and center/power forwards Shelden Williams (Duke) and Cedric Simmons (North Carolina State) could be available at No. 11.

When represented by Williams, they Magic have won the lottery three times dating to 1992. They could use the kind of lotto luck the Milwaukee Bucks enjoyed last May.

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