2024 NBA Draft Lottery: Odds, top prospects, how to watch

2024 NBA Draft Lottery
When: Sunday, May 12, 3 p.m. ET
How to watch: ESPN (U.S.), TSN (Canada)

The NBA draft lottery presents an opportunity for teams to put a positive spin on a season that likely ended on a sour note.

The 13 non-playoff clubs plus the Oklahoma City Thunder (who own protected picks from the Houston Rockets and Utah Jazz) will each send a representative to Chicago to oversee the drawing of pingpong balls to determine the order of the first four selections. The lottery then sorts the following 10 picks based on the worst record to the best of the remaining teams.

The odds

Top prospects

There isn’t a sure-shot first selection in the 2024 NBA Draft like last year’s consensus top choice, Victor Wembanyama. This year’s crop of prospective pros is viewed as less certain and largely inferior to 2023’s group.

Here’s a look at five candidates for the top pick. Click here to view our early 2024 NBA Mock Draft:

Alexandre Sarr, F/C, Perth (Australia)

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It’s looking extremely likely that the next top overall pick in the NBA draft will be from France again. Playing with the NBL’s Perth Wildcats, Sarr’s intriguing versatility as a 7-footer harkens back to the generational prospect from the same country selected No. 1 last season. The 19-year-old’s size and adaptability to guard the rim and perimeter make him a premier prospect in this year’s class.

Donovan Clingan, C, Connecticut

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After backing up Adama Sanogo in his freshman season at UConn, Clingan took over the starting center spot in the team’s quest to repeat as national champions. The Huskies reached their goal largely due to the 20-year-old’s strong transition play and rim protection on the defensive end. Despite some conditioning and health concerns, a big man who can take up space will always be valuable in the NBA.

Zaccharie Risacher, F, JL Bourg (France)

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Risacher, another top-notch prospect from France, looks to have the makings of a standout perimeter shooter in the Association, using his 6-foot-10 frame to get catch-and-shoot attempts off easily. However, questions remain about Risacher’s small sample size and impact in France’s top league over the last two seasons, as well as his slender frame.

Stephon Castle, G, Connecticut

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Arguably the draft’s top guard prospect, Castle might have the highest floor and ceiling compared to his peers in his position group. Showcasing stout perimeter defense, quality off-ball awareness, and good touch around the rim at UConn, Castle has a solid base to build from as a professional – including improving his three-point touch.

Matas Buzelis, F, G League Ignite

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Buzelis could be one of the bright spots to enter the NBA from the G League Ignite and is the last notable prospect from the program as the team ceased operations. Buzelis didn’t quite flash the playmaking and shot creation that made him a five-star prospect, but the 19-year-old showed some promise around the rim on driving opportunities.