Charlotte Bobcats executive Rod Higgins doesn't expect a sleepless night prior to Wednesday's NBA draft lottery.
The Bobcats earned the right to have the best ping pong ball odds in the sweepstakes for Kentucky forward Anthony Davis after owning the NBA's worst record this season at 7-59. The reward for Michael Jordan's franchise is a 25 percent chance of landing the top pick. Charlotte has an even better chance at the fourth pick, the worst it can fall, at 35.8 percent. The NBA team with the worst record has not landed the No. 1 pick since 2004 when the Orlando Magic selected Dwight Howard.
"Why should you be stressed?" Higgins, Charlotte's president of basketball operations, told Yahoo! Sports. "What can you do? You have no control over it. You stress over things you have control over. The stress comes June 28 [draft day] if you don't have the top pick."
Higgins declined comment on Davis, but the expectations are strong that Charlotte would select the heralded prospect first with the top pick in hand. Sources say Davis has yet to hire an agent, but is considering Wasserman Media Group, Bill Duffy & Associates and Creative Artists Agency.
Even if the Bobcats don't land the top pick, Higgins is optimistic Charlotte will land a player who can help the struggling franchise immediately in what is considered a deep draft. One NBA executive said other top candidates include: Connecticut center Andre Drummond, Kentucky forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kansas forward Thomas Robinson, Florida guard Bradley Beal, North Carolina forward Harrison Barnes and Baylor forward Perry Jones III. The highest draft selection in Bobcats history was the second overall pick in 2004, which was used to select Connecticut center Emeka Okafor.
"That player is going to have a very good chance of playing right away. Every rookie wants that opportunity," Higgins said.
While Higgins says he won't be nervous, Bobcats season-ticket representatives surely will. The Bobcats are holding an open house for prospective customers two hours before the draft lottery is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. Wednesday. The event will be broadcast at the team's arena, which could make for a festive evening.
Bobcats general manager Rich Cho is representing the franchise at the draft lottery in New York City. Higgins said he left Cho with the words, "Go get him," before he departed.
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The Washington Wizards own the second-best odds for the top pick at 19.9 percent followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers (13.8 percent) and the New Orleans Hornets (13.7). The Golden State Warriors have the draft's seventh-best odds, but if their selection falls lower than seventh the pick goes to the Utah Jazz to fulfill a previous trade.
Golden State has had interest in re-acquiring the pick if the Jazz took it, but a source said the Warriors would likely concede to finally rid themselves of the old debt.
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