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2016 NBA Draft Lottery could have many ties to Wisconsin

The NBA draft lottery is set for Tuesday night at 6 P.M. with Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals set to start shortly after. The lottery determines the order of the first 14 selections, which this year, holds a lot of interest for the state of Wisconsin.

The Bucks missed out on the playoffs, meaning they have a lottery selection. The Bucks’s past two lottery selections are Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker. Another hit on a lottery selection would fast forward the mini rebuilding the Bucks have to do after a disappointing 2015-16 season.

In 2005, when the Bucks took Andrew Bogut with the number one pick, they held a 6.3% chance at the number one pick. This year, the Bucks have a 1.8% chance at the number one pick and a 6.5% chance at landing in the top three. Head coach Jason Kidd and vice president of strategy and operations Alex Lasry will represent the Bucks at the lottery.

Besides the Bucks, there are also two NBA prospects who are just one year removed from playing high school basketball in the state of Wisconsin. The 2015 co-Mr. Basketball award winners in Wisconsin, Henry Ellenson and Diamond Stone, could both be lottery picks.

Ellenson, a former Rice Lake High School standout, is headed for the NBA after just one year at Marquette. At the moment, although there is a long way to go before the actual draft, Ellenson is looked at as a lock for the lottery. Some drafts even have him going to the Bucks, fitting the Bucks need for a big man who can stretch the floor.

Ellenson averaged 17.0 PPG and 9.7 RPG in an impressive freshman campaign for the Golden Eagles. Ellenson is extremely athletic for his size at 6’10” and 245 lbs. ESPN NBA Draft analyst Chad Ford believes the “comparisons to Kevin Love aren’t that far-fetched” for Henry Ellenson.

Ellenson is waiting to schedule workouts until after the lottery, according to Sports Illustrated. He could be taken anywhere from 5 to 14. The Nuggets could be a possible landing spot. They have a jammed front court, but none of them do the things that Ellenson is able to do. Also watch for the Pelicans, who haven’t been able to find the right person to fit next to Anthony Davis.

Diamond Stone is also just one year removed from high school, where he attended Dominican High School in Milwaukee. Stone had an up and down year at Maryland during his freshman year, but played his strongest at the end of the year. Stone averaged 12.5 PPG and 5.4 RPG for the Terrapins, but he got suspended for shoving Vitto Brown’s head into the floor and was involved in an infamous snapchat ordeal.

Stone’s stock has been in flux all year. At times, he’s been projected as a top-10 pick and fallen as far as the 2nd round. In’s most recent mock draft, they have Stone going in the 2nd round to the Clippers at pick 33. Stone possesses all the natural athleticism and talent to be a productive NBA player, but has to prove himself to be a more consistent player on the court.

With Tim Duncan possibly retiring and David West’s contract expiring, the Spurs could be in the market for a big man at the end of the first round. The Clippers, which is where he was projected to go by, badly need a backup center for Deandre Jordan, and they have picks number 25 and 33. Most mock drafts are leaving Stone out of the first round.

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