Nightmare Dad Lavar Ball Kardashians the NBA in Fight for No. 1 Pick

RTSWR90
Lonzo Ball, center, who could be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA draft, is not quite as famous as his dad. USA TODAY SPORTS

Tuesday night's NBA lineup features basketball, pingpong balls and LaVar Ball. It's a balls-out evening as the NBA Draft Lottery (ESPN, 8 p.m. Eastern) serves as a prelude to Game 2 of the Western Conference finals pitting the San Antonio Spurs against the Golden State Warriors (ESPN, 9 p.m. Eastern).

The lottery buzz will likely eclipse that for the playoff contest between the teams with the NBA's two best records (67-15 for the Dubs; 61-21 for the Spurs) because of one person who will not even be drafted: LaVar Ball. The father of potential No. 1 overall pick Lonzo Ball out of UCLA, LaVar is already Kardashian-ing the NBA. The elder Ball, who has two younger sons in high school (LaMelo and LiAngelo) who have already verbally committed to the Bruins, is SEO magic, with his vainglorious boasts and $495 Big Baller shoes. As worthy as Lonzo Ball is of, at worst, being the second or third player taken next month, LaVar will still probably garner more attention on Tuesday night's telecast. He is a black hole of sports media attention.

What else is pertinent in terms of the lottery? Here are the bullet, or if your prefer, Wizard points:

* All 14 franchises that failed to make the playoffs are in the lottery, with diminishing odds of landing one of the top three picks based on their reverse order of finish. The Miami Heat, who finished with the best record of any non-playoff franchise, have a 0.5% chance to nab the top pick (the clubs with the four best records in this group all have less than a 1% chance). The Phoenix Suns, who finished with the second-worst record, have a 19.9% chance.

RTSER8U
2015 number one overall draft pick Karl-Anthony Towns will represent the Minnesota Timberwolves USA TODAY SPORTS

* The Brooklyn Nets finished with the league's worst record, but four years ago they made the worst trade in recent memory. The Boston Celtics, who finished with the best record in the Eastern Conference and host the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 1 of the conference finals Wednesday evening, hold Brooklyn's pick. Their odds of landing the No. 1 overall pick are 25%.

* Only the top three picks are determined by ping-pong balls careening randomly in an enclosed space in an inadvertent tribute to Brownian motion. Picks four through 14 are assembled based on the reverse order of records. Hence, if the Nets/Celtics ball does not pop up in any of the top three picks, they would pick fourth. If the Heat do not see their ball, they will pick 14th.

* LaVar Ball and the Los Angeles Lakers will be at the center of many conspiracy theories, even though the draft will be held at the Hilton Midtown hotel in New York City (this is the biggest news of a Ball dropping in New York outside of New Year's Eve). The Lakers, one of the league's two historic glamour franchises (along with the Celtics), covet a marketable superstar to fill the void left by the 2015 retirement of Kobe Bryant. Lonzo Ball is from Chino Hills, approximately 40 miles due east of the Staples Center. "Oh, he's going to be a Laker," LaVar Ball promised ESPN recently. "I'm going to keep talking until it happens."

LaVar is going to keep talking no matter what happens. The Lakers have the third-best odds, at 15.6%, of snaring the top overall pick. But there are other ways for Lonzo to wind up wearing L.A.'s regal purple and gold…

* Whoever earns the No. 1 pick may very well select Markelle Fultz, a 6'4" guard out of Washington considered by many experts the top player in the draft (neither Fultz nor Ball, who each played in the Pac-12, were named the conference's Player of the Year; that was guard Dillon Brooks of Oregon). If that happens, it would give the Lakers essentially a second shot at Ball.

Moreover, any team that lands the first or second ping-pong ball may very well barter with the Lakers, knowing how much Los Angeles wants that pick. Finally, LaVar Ball could go full Nightmare Dad on the draft and promise (threaten?) that his eldest son will play overseas for a year if a team other than the Lakers A) drafts Lonzo and B) fails to trade him to the Lakers.

RTX14N0K
Knick legend and devotee of sesquipedalian verbiage Walt Frazier will rep the Knicks REUTERS

* The New York Knicks are sending Hall of Famer Walt Frazier to represent them in the draft. The last time a starter from the 1973 Knicks—the last edition of that franchise to hang a championship banner in Madison Square Garden—represented the team at the draft lottery was 32 years ago. On that night, the inaugural year of the draft lottery, the late Dave Debusschere was in attendance as the Knicks, who finished with the third-worst record, leapfrogged two teams to claim the top pick. They later drafted center Patrick Ewing out of Georgetown.

* If the Nets/Celtics win the draft lottery, it would be Boston's first No. 1 overall pick since 1950. The Suns, who have the second-best chance at the top pick, have never chosen first (they lost a coin flip in 1969 for the No. 1 pick and a young center named Lew Alcindor).

Nightmare Dad Lavar Ball Kardashians the NBA in Fight for No. 1 Pick | Sports
{{label}}
{{title}}
EDITOR'S PICK