An NBA team official has submitted a proposal that would eliminate the NBA Draft Lottery and institute a new system, according to Grantland's Zach Lowe. The idea has gained some traction among high-level NBA officials and could be officially proposed to owners in 2014, although there's also some opposition from other top officials.
In this new system, each of the 30 teams would pick in a specific first-round slot once and only once every 30 years. The order would be predetermined and teams would know exactly what their draft position would be for every season up to 30 years out of each 30-year cycle. This would eliminate protected picks and have a major effect on trade negotiations.
Every team would get a top-six pick every five seasons and a top-12 pick every four. Each mini-cycle also has two top-12 picks stacked next to each other, which would help encourage long-term building around young talent.
The whole basis of the "wheel" idea is to help eliminate tanking, which many people around the NBA view in a negative light. This new system wouldn't reward teams being bad like the lottery does; however, some other problems could arise. There's the matter of an already elite team landing a top pick, and there's also the issue of bad teams losing hope for a few seasons if they're stuck during a stretch of middling picks.
It must be noted that this system wouldn't start until all current draft-based trades have been executed, which won't happen for nearly another decade. Before the implementation of this new system, there would be one final lottery to help determine who starts where on the wheel.
While this idea has its own set of problems, it's interesting to see that the NBA might be serious about addressing tanking. Be sure to check out Lowe's piece for full details on the proposal and a visual representation of the system.