I find it more likely than not that Charlotte will end up with a 2014 pick in the second half of the lottery. The Pistons finished with the league’s ninth-worst record this season, have a handful of rising talents (most notably Greg Monroe) and will have incentive to win games down the stretch in 2013-14 rather than coasting into the lottery.
A 2014 pick would still be valuable to the Bobcats, certainly. I’d estimate the value of the 10th pick somewhere around $6 million. But Charlotte is taking on more than twice that much salary, so for this deal to truly work they will almost certainly have to delay the pick until 2015 or 2016–and hope Detroit is still struggling then.
I agree with Pelton’s prediction that Detroit will send the pick to Charlotte in 2014, but I disagree that Charlotte erred by taking on twice as much salary as the 10th pick is worse. The Bobcats needed to up their payroll to meet the salary floor, anyway. So, that gives them more reason to take Ben Gordon and the attached draft pick.
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