Tiebreakers: Spurs Land Picks 20 and 25 in 2022 NBA Draft

The San Antonio Spurs now know the location of three of their four picks in the 2022 NBA Draft. Following a series of tiebreakers performed today by the NBA to break ties between teams with the same record, the Spurs know they will be drafting 20th and 25th in the first round. San Antonio has a second round pick — the 38th overall selection, a pick that was originally owned by the Los Angeles Lakers.

The 20th pick comes by way of the Toronto Raptors. It was acquired as part of the Thaddeus Young deal. In that trade, the Spurs basically ended up dealing Young and the 33rd pick for the 20th pick. As it turned out, San Antonio got a lot of value out of that swap. If you look at draft pick values, the Spurs got the equivalent of the 26th pick in value in return for Young. It was a bold and somewhat risky move by the front office (there were scenarios where the Spurs could have traded Young along with the 33rd pick and received worst draft compensation in return) but it worked out well.

The 25th pick is via the Boston Celtics as part of the Derrick White trade. When the trade was made, the Celtics were in line to have the 18th pick in the draft. Unfortunately for the Spurs, White and the Celtics won 20 of their final 26 games and grabbed the second seed in the Eastern Conference. The good news for the Spurs is Josh Richardson played well in Silver and Black and could potentially bring back a future first round pick if traded to a contending team. Additionally, the Spurs retain the right to swap 2028 first round picks with the Celtics and Boston can only decline the pick swap if they own the first overall selection.

Heading into today’s tiebreakers, the best the Spurs could have done was land the 20th and 23rd picks. While they didn’t have great luck, they won the most important coin flip by getting the 20th pick instead of the 21st pick.

This was the second straight season the Spurs were involved in draft tiebreakers. Last season, they lost a coin flip with the Charlotte Hornets and picked 12th instead of 11th. 

Spurs 2022 Lottery Pick

The NBA will conduct the draft lottery on May 17th. Currently, the Spurs have the ninth pick in the draft. After the lottery balls are drawn, San Antonio has a 20% chance of moving up into the top four. However, there’s also a 26% chance the Spurs drop to 10th. In order of most likely to least likely, the Spurs could pick 9th, 10th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd, 1st, 11th, 12th or 13th. Tankathon has the full lottery odds for the Spurs.

More Spurs Draft Coverage

I’ll be releasing Big Board 1.0 later today. In the meantime, there’s an active thread in the Spurs forum where the draft is continuously discussed.