Sonics get No. 2 pick
President Lenny Wilkens received a tremendous asset in rebuilding the Sonics on Tuesday night, winning the NBA lottery and the No. 2 pick in next month's draft, which will undoubtedly be used to select Texas forward Kevn Durant.
Seattle Times staff reporter
President Lenny Wilkens received a tremendous asset in rebuilding the Sonics on Tuesday night, winning the NBA lottery and the No. 2 pick in next month’s draft, which will undoubtedly be used to select Texas forward Kevin Durant.
Seattle (31-51) finished with the fifth-worst record, giving it an 9.65 percent chance nabbing the second pick in the June 28 draft. It’s the second highest draft choice in franchise history, equaling 1990 when the Sonics selected Gary Payton at No. 2.
The 6-10 Durant, who led Texas to a 25-10 record as a freshman, averaged 25.8 points and 11.1 points in 35 games. He was the first freshman in NCAA history to earn consensus the National Player of the Year.
Wilkens, sitting in the front row at the NBA Entertainment headquarters in Seacaucus, N.J., as the picks were being announced, grabbed Atlanta vice president Dominique Wilkins and Portland guard Brandon Roy when it became clear that the Sonics, Trail Blazers and Hawks would get the top three picks.
Portland, which had the NBA's sixth-worst record, landed the No. 1 pick and are almost certain to select Ohio State center Greg Oden. Atlanta will draft third.
Boston, the second worst team in the NBA at 24-58, had the best chances at winning the lottery at 25 percent, but the Celtics fell to No. 5.
Durant, 18, has been touted as the most complete perimeter forward to enter the NBA since Kevin Garnett. He shot .404 percent on three-pointers, .473 percent from the field and 80 percent on free throws.