A friend of mine had this suggestion, going to run it by you guys to see what you think about it.
The basic concept is that the lottery will be divided into two groups, top 7 and bottom 7 of the 14 lottery teams. Now, the order of the pick in each group will be determined by the team's record in their last few games (my friend suggested 15) and that tie breakers will be a knockout game between the teams.
-Tanking will have a negative effect, as it means getting a lower pick
-More meaningful games at the end of the regular season
-There will still be tanking to avoid getting into playoffs or going to 7th slot instead of 8th, slightly mitigated by lower chance of getting a good last 15 record
-more games, which could mean more injuries
You guys can add a few, these are just some of my thoughts on his idea.
Nice attempt but bad idea. You missed a lot of cons that make it a terrible idea.
Sample Size - as pointed out, scheduled vary wildly and 15 games isn't nearly enough to get a representative sample size. I believe by record in the last 15 you mean that the BEST W-L record gets the 1st pick. So a team that is ravaged by injuries at the end of the year may very well end up with the worst pick because...well, because of this very arbitrary system. Not to mention that playoff teams that have secured their spots tend to rest starters, so that adds yet another layer of extreme variability that isn't generally present in a full 82 game schedule. In short, if a bad team drew a bunch of games against potential playoff teams from seeds 4-8 they'd be in an incredibly disadvantageous position compared to teams that weren't.
Tank Earlier - you're just pushing any tanking efforts to earlier in the year. If a team wanted to tank, they'd do so prior to the last 15 to guarantee a spot in the first 7 then play better.
Public focus - the NBA wouldn't like it because the focus would take away from teams trying to make the playoffs.
PR Disaster - the NBA also wouldn't like it because it would raise some serious issues. It is a certainty that a bad - bottom 7 - team would "win" the race to #1 by winning 10 out of their last 15. That's not even a question. That's a certainty. Then they'd win the #1 pick and the NBA would suffer a HUGE backlash because the appearance would be that the team tanked the first 67 games and could have actually been a playoff team but chose not to. It would be an epic PR disaster. I can't stress this point enough. There might even be lawsuits from disgruntled season-ticket holders that the team lost on purpose early in the year when they had the talent not to. It's a PR nightmare and would happen almost every season.
Mid-Bad Teams Losing More - and then finally you'd see some real tanking to get from 8 to 7 because of the chance of going from 8 to 14. In fact, I doubt you'd see many wins from any team from #6 to #8 as they all lobbied for that valuable #7 spot.
I've said this many times. There is no solution for tanking besides sheer randomness in draft position which opens up another HUGE can of worms that makes the system even more unfair.
1) And why is that bad? If you are a team who became bottom 7 just because of injuries it means your team isn't as bad as teams who were bottom 7 despite being healthy. And those teams need a higher pick than you. Under that scenario, Duncan to Spurs can be avoided.
2) Playoff teams tend to rest starters. But what happens when we get tanking teams playing playoff teams that rest starters? Yep, very bad product with both teams not looking like they are trying at all.
3) If you draw potential playoff teams 4-8 that just means you have to try and win, or do you prefer that when this happens the tanking teams just lay down and accept the loss?
4) Tanking earlier- My concern as well, but it wont be that easy. 15 games is just a sample scenario. If you tank early and then start to play well, there's no guarantee you'd still be bottom 7. Tanking would be more risky because you have to take into account that you have to be bad, but still better than the rest.
5) Sure, but at this point Tankathon is drawing focus from the playoff battle as well. And I rather see teams fighting hard than intentionally lose.
6) I listed tanking in the 7-8 spot as my concern as well.
7) Oh sure, that could happen. But there's also a chance that another team is doing that as well and now instead of 10 wins you have to try and win 11. Plus teams that know they could get into playoffs try and do so. Why? REVENUES. There's a reason why teams who has very low championship chance still try to make the playoffs. MOST teams only tank when it is apparent they wont make the playoffs. Now if you're team is that bad that its safe to tank early because you have 0 playoff chance, you still have to try and win games because tanking early wont guarantee you a good pick.