The Houston Rockets will be fighting against tough odds in tonight's NBA Draft Lottery drawing (6:30 PM CT, ESPN). With just a 1.8% chance of making the top three and a 0.5% chance of receiving the No. 1 overall pick, the Rockets are facing about the same odds in the lotto as they are that Hasheem Thabeet becomes a respectable NBA player.
While that 1.8% chance isn't the likeliest event in the world, it has happened before. The Orlando Magic won the lottery as the best non-playoff team in 1993, with just a 1.5% chance, and they rolled that pick (Chris Webber) into a large trade package for Penny Hardaway. More recently, the odds of the Bulls moving into the top three to select MVP Derrick Rose were at just 1.7%. Lottery upsets do happen from time-to-time.
The Rockets will be represented at the draft by Kyle Lowry. It's a natural fit, as the luckiest (only lucky?) thing they had happen to them all year was to watch Lowry blossom into an upper echelon lead guard. If they don't move up into the top three, they will be picking a No. 14 overall for the second straight year. Last year, they used the 14th overall pick to select forward Patrick Patterson out of Kentucky.