It has been a few years since I have put out my rankings of the NBA Draft classes. Every now and then, I cycle back around to this list out of sheer curiosity. I also think the last 12-18 months of NBA have re-sparked my interest in the league. The Raptors knocking out the mighty Warriors in 2019 was must-see TV. Then came 2020. I wasn't following the NBA that closely until the pandemic hit. The NBA bubble had me fascinated, and I felt an urge to watch this experiment play out. Also, having mid-week matinee basketball was the closest thing to March Madness I was going to get this year. After a crazy season, here we are almost at Thanksgiving, and instead of talking about the fourth week of the new season, we are finally getting around to the NBA Draft. As the season is also only around the corner, let's rank past drafts.
In ranking the drafts, I go back to 1989 when the current format started (lottery, 2 rounds). I have come up with a formula that generates a score for each draft as well, looking at factors like All-Stars to come out of the draft, All-NBA, MVP's, Hall of Famers, success of the #1 overall pick, and success of the best player in the draft. I also look at how well they drafted by penalizing the draft for each top 10 flop and rewarding the draft for each successful second round pick. I use the Win Share stat to determine the success of the players. For a player to be considered a "success" on my list, they need to average 2 Win Shares per season or have a career total over 20 for players that were drafted over 10 years ago. To rank the top picks and best players, I ranked the players by WS/48 and WS/Yr and averaged the two rankings together. Here is the formula...Score = (All Stars) + (All NBA players) + (Hall of Famers) + (MVP Awards) + (MVP Players) + (Flipped Rank of #1 pick / 2) + (Flipped Rank of Best Player / 4) + (Notable 2nd Rounders / 2) - (Top 10 Flops) - (Players That Never Played / 2)