Suns Land Sixth Overall Pick in 2019 NBA Draft
The Phoenix Suns own the sixth overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft it was determined tonight at the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery in Chicago. The Suns had a 26 percent chance of landing the sixth pick, the highest probability of any single pick for the team.
Of the nine players in the Suns Ring of Honor to have been drafted, all nine were selected between the fourth and 15th picks of their respective drafts. The Suns have used the sixth overall pick once previously, taking William Bedford in 1986. Notable players to be selected No. 6 overall include Hall of Famers Larry Bird and Adrian Dantley and 2019 NBA All-Star Damian Lillard, as well as Buddy Hield, Marcus Smart, Brandon Roy, Antoine Walker and Tom Gugliotta.
A new NBA Draft Lottery system took effect this year with the odds leveled so that three teams, including the Suns, each had a 14 percent chance of receiving the No. 1 overall pick with the odds for the remaining teams gradually reducing after the top three. Also new this year, the top four picks were awarded by the Lottery (previously top three). The New Orleans Pelicans hit on a 6.0 percent chance to win the first overall pick.
The Suns were represented on stage at the Lottery by center Deandre Ayton, the No. 1 overall pick in 2018 who averaged 16.3 points and 10.3 rebounds while shooting 58.5 percent from the field this past season—the highest field goal percentage by a rookie to average a double-double in NBA history.
Ayton was joined in Chicago by Gabriel Olvera, an 8-year-old Suns fan and Phoenix Children’s Hospital patient. Gabriel was diagnosed with critical aortic stenosis with evolving hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) and at just 27 weeks underwent successful heart surgery in the womb to save both ventricles and four chambers of his heart. He has had two open-heart surgeries to date and will eventually need the aortic valve and mitral valve replaced. Gabriel does not let his heart condition diminish his love of basketball or the Suns and has big dreams of one day becoming an NBA player.
Ayton surprised Gabriel with an invitation to attend the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery last week after he thought he was only being treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of Talking Stick Resort Arena. While in Chicago, Ayton and Gabriel spent quality time in the city before attending the Lottery. The Suns learned about Gabriel’s story through the team’s community work with Phoenix Children’s Hospital.
The Suns own two overall selections in the 2019 NBA Draft; in addition to the No. 6 overall pick, the Suns also possess the No. 32 pick, as confirmed by the results of the Lottery tonight. The 2019 NBA Draft will be held on Thursday, June 20, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.