wnba

How to watch the 2022 WNBA Draft lottery, and how it works


Published: 11/09/22
aliyah and haley

If you're wondering what's up with basketball's obsession with ping pong balls determining the futures of the brightest young players and their prospective places of employment, same here.

Just like the NBA, the WNBA will select random combinations of ping pong balls and, in turn, determine which teams will draft in which order at the draft in April.

Why is there a draft lottery?

The WNBA's draft lottery system attempts to reward its worst teams with the best amateur player entering the league. Seems fair!

How does the draft lottery work?

There are 12 teams in the WNBA, eight of which make the playoffs. The eight teams that made it to the postseason in 2022 were ranked from best to worst record with the best team earning the last pick in the first round and the worst team earning the fifth. No ping pong balls are necessary for those teams.

The top four teams — aka the teams that did not make the playoffs — get the ping pong ball treatment.

How do the ping pong balls work?

Numbers are assigned to each of the four teams with the team holding the worst record in the last two years combined receiving the best possible odds to get the top pick. This year, the Fever will have the best chance at the top pick followed by the Dream, Mystics (who traded for the Sparks' pick) and Lynx.

What are the lottery teams' chances at getting the top pick?

  • The Fever have a 44.2% chance

  • The Dream have a 27.6% chance

  • The Mystics have a 17.8% chance

  • The Lynx have a 10.4% chance

Read more about the state of the teams in play for Aliyah Boston here.

When will the winner be determined?

On Friday, November 11 at 5:30 ET on ESPN2, right before tipoff of the Maryland vs. South Carolina game that could feature two of the top picks in the 2023 draft.

Which players will be available in the 2023 draft?

This draft class is considered to be pretty strong, and there's a consensus top pick. If you haven't seen Aliyah Boston, last year's champ and Most Outstanding Player, in action, now's your chance. The 6'5 big is unstoppable on both ends in the paint and will make fans of any franchise into a believer.

Other potential lottery picks include Stanford's Haley Jones, Maryland's Diamond Miller, Iowa State's Ashley Joens, and Virginia Tech's Elizabeth Kitley.


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