3 winners and losers of the shocking 2024 NBA Draft Lottery

NBA Draft Lottery
NBA Draft Lottery / Anadolu/GettyImages
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Loser: Detroit Pistons

For the second straight year, the Detroit Pistons had the worst record in the NBA and again, they failed to end up with the number one overall pick. In fact, they again fell short of landing a top-three pick; instead, they will select fifth for the third straight year. Compared to last year, this is less of a letdown since the 2023 draft was far better but after losing 27 straight games, Pistons fans probably felt as though they were due for some good luck.

Detroit selecting 5th probably won't negatively impact them going forward, however. While they were linked to French forward Zacharrie Risacher, there are concerns about his game, and the Pistons may still be able to find an equally talented player with the fifth pick instead of picking first.

That would have the added benefit of that player being cheaper over their first four seasons in the NBA. The number one pick is expected to make $13 million next season compared to the fifth pick, who will make $11 million.

Nevertheless, with the Pistons failing to have any luck in the draft lottery, they could change gears and look to free agency and the trade market to try and build around the young core. That may be the quicker option, but it will depend on how players such as Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey develop.