Hawks win NBA draft lottery, will pick first in draft

France's Alex Sarr is considered a likely No. 1 selection in the NBA draft, in which the <a class="link " href="" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Atlanta Hawks;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Atlanta Hawks</a> will pick first after winning the NBA draft lottery (Ethan Miller)

The Atlanta Hawks will have the top selection in the 2024 NBA draft next month after beating the odds to come out on top in the draft lottery in Chicago on Sunday.

The 14 teams that failed to make the playoffs took part in the lottery to determine the early draft selection order, the weighted system giving the 14-68 Detroit Pistons and the 15-67 Washington Wizards each a 14% chance of landing the top pick.

The Charlotte Hornets and Portland Trail Blazers had the next best chances but it was Atlanta -- who actually made the Eastern Conference play-in and only had a 3% chance -- that came out on top in the drawing.

The Wizards will pick second followed by the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs.

The Spurs won the lottery last year and selected French phenomenon Victor Wembanyama, who scooped this season's Rookie of the Year award after an impressive debut campaign.

Unlike last year, when Wembanyama was a virtual certainty to go No. 1, the top selection is less ironclad.

However, plenty of analysts have predicted French prospect Alex Sarr is the likeliest top pick, with compatriot Zaccharie Risacher right behind him.

Sarr, 19, is a 7-foot-1 center who played for the Perth Wildcats in Australia's NBL for a season and caught the eye of NBA executives in two exhibition games in Las Vegas against the G League Ignite.

Risacher, 19, plays for JL Bourg-en-Bresse in the LNB Pro A French League.

Other players who could figure in the top five selections are University of Connecticut center Donovan Clingan and guard Stephon Castle, and serbian guard Nikola Topic.

Draft prospects will have a chance to showcase their skills at the draft combine that began on Sunday in Chicago.

The draft will be held June 26–27.