Pacers voted for draft lottery reform — to be implemented in 2019

The Pacers were one of 28 teams that voted in favor of changes to the NBA Draft Lottery system, leveling the odds for the teams with the three worst records.

In an effort to prevent tanking, NBA Board of Governors agreed to even the odds for the top pick at 14 percent each for the bottom three teams. The change won’t take effect until the 2019 NBA Draft.

Oklahoma City was the only team to oppose lottery reform, and Dallas owner Mark Cuban abstained from voting.

This comes after a season where several teams rested healthy players or turned to development-level players to finish out the season. By doing so, they lost games and in turn elevated their chances for a top pick.

“I’ve been on both sides of that,” Pacers President Kevin Pritchard said during media day. “I don’t really like that word (tanking). I would say that you’re just playing your younger players. I think the potentially new rule with the new percentages could really take that away. I like being competitive.

“I want to go into this gym every single day and say three things: We played hard, we played smart, and we played together. If we do those things, you got a chance to win. If we do that, I’ll be happy.”

See Also: NBA scraps East vs. West, takes schoolyard approach to All-Star Game in 2018

The Pacers are rarely a lottery team and when they were recently, Larry Bird made the most of it. He drafted Paul George 10th overall in 2010, and then Myles Turner one pick later in the 2015 draft.

“I like it,” Pritchard said of reform. “[Owner] Herb [Simon] likes it.

“We’ve looked at it, we’ve modeled it. One of the things that we think is right is it does take away from the tanking. You don’t take. … We want to be good. We don’t want to shallow out. We want to take this team and we want to be competitive.”

It was an offseason of newness for the Pacers. Larry Bird stepped down, Kevin Pritchard was promoted to President of Basketball Operations, Paul George was traded, and just six players return from last year’s team that went 42-40.

The team is younger and has a fresh energy to it, multiple players have pointed it. It clearly takes at least two All-Stars to compete and three to win a championship and right now the Pacers have none.

Tanking has never been in the Pacers’ cards. They’ve participated in postseason play 22 of the last 28 seasons, and haven’t won fewer than 30 games since the 1988-89 season (28 wins).

That isn’t changing anytime soon.

“Herb has made it perfectly clear that the ideal situation is bring in good kids, good talent, and let them grow together  – whether they are 23 or 28,” Pritchard continued. “We have a lot more growth, and I’m excited about that.”

Other Ruled Passed:

The NBA Board of Governors agreed on a policy for resting healthy players.  The policy, effective with the 2017-18 season, is below:

  • Teams are prohibited from resting healthy players for any high-profile, nationally televised game.  Any violation of this provision will constitute conduct prejudicial or detrimental to the NBA and result in a fine of at least $100,000.
  • Absent unusual circumstances, a team should not rest multiple healthy players for the same game or rest healthy players when playing on the road.
  • In situations when teams decide to rest healthy players, the players should be visible and available to interact with fans.
  • Any team that violates this policy, or otherwise rests a healthy player in circumstances that are prejudicial or detrimental to the league, is subject to discipline by the NBA.

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