Tanking

One of the many issues in the ongoing CBA negotiations is the topic of teams intentionally not being competitive, or tanking. A proposal from MLB supposedly addressing the issue is a draft lottery. The idea is that simply being the worst team doesn’t get you the first pick in the draft—you must also then win the lottery. The articles I’ve read all state that this lottery would be like the NBA’s.

Well, that must mean that NBA teams do not engage in tanking, right? Wrong! Look at the current NBA standings. 8 teams have records of .373 or worse 5/8 of the way through their season—that’s a 100 loss pace in MLB. 3 of those team are below .300 and would be on pace (if they were baseball teams) for records of 37-125, 38-124, and 47-115. Oh, and their Western Conference has a .404 team in their 10 seed position, which would get them into the postseason—it also means some of those obvIously tanking teams are ”still in the hunt” for the playoffs. Absurd.

Draft lotteries only serve to create an offseason day that sports news talks anout their sport. They do nothing to prevent tanking, even in a sport like basketball where picks at the top of the first round are supposed to be immediate starters.

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