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Utah Jazz: No luck for Jazz as Warriors keep pick in NBA draft lottery

Published: Wednesday, May 30 2012 6:30 p.m. MDT

Utah Jazz point guard Devin Harris (5) leaves the arena after Utah Jazz players clean out their lockers after being swept in the first round of the NBA playoffs in Salt Lake City Tuesday, May 8, 2012.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

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SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz must have used up all their luck last year when they jumped up to the No. 3 spot in the 2011 NBA Draft.

No such luck for the Jazz this time around.

Golden State remained in its No. 7 slot in the 2012 Draft Lottery, meaning the Warriors will retain their top-seven protected pick that would have gone to Utah if it had slipped to No. 8 or lower.

Because of the lottery's results, the Jazz find themselves without a first-round selection — a position it hasn't been in since 1994.

Minnesota will get Utah's no. 18 overall pick in the first round to close out the 2010 Al Jefferson deal. The Jazz would've kept the pick had they not qualified for the playoffs.

That leaves the Jazz with only one selection — No. 47 in the second round — in what's considered a loaded draft by many experts. That No. 47 position has been a good spot in recent Jazz history, though. Utah picked up Paul Millsap (2006) and Mo Williams ('03) in that mid-second-round slot.

The Jazz have two more years in which they can pick up the Warriors' pick, with even more friendly restrictions (top six) for 2013 and '14.

Utah obtained that as part of the 2011 Deron Williams trade with the New Jersey Nets. The Jazz also received Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, the Nets' No. 1 pick last year (Enes Kanter, No. 3 overall) and $3 million. If the Warriors keep their picks in the next two years, the Jazz will get a pair of future second-round selections from Golden State.

Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor declined an opportunity to comment on the development with the Warriors' draft pick. Golden State lost 22 of its final 27 games to fall into a tie for the No. 7 position with Toronto. The Warriors then won a tiebreaker with the Raptors to stay in their coveted spot.

Golden State approached the Jazz about a possible deal to ensure that the Warriors would keep their pick regardless of the lottery's results — something owner Joe Lacob talked about months ago — but nothing ever materialized between the two teams.

The New Orleans Hornets won this year's lottery despite being in the No. 4 overall position. Last season, the Jazz made a leap from No. 6 to No. 3, which it used to grab Kanter.

The Hornets' lottery win — likely to be used on Kentucky big man Anthony Davis — moved Charlotte to the No. 2 position even after it had the worst-ever NBA season.

The Wizards dropped to No. 3, while Cleveland slid to No. 4. Portland got a bit of luck at New Jersey's expense, ending up with the Nets' No. 6 pick thanks to the Gerald Wallace trade that only had a top-three protection.

Email: jody@desnews.com

Twitter: DJJazzyJody

Blog: Jazzland.blogs.deseretnews.com

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