NBA Tank Magic Numbers

2018-19 NBA Tank Magic Numbers

Tank Magic Numbers

Tank GP/R W L W%
CLE 47/35 9 38 .191   34 34 33 30 25 25 25 24 24 23 23 22 22 20 20 19 20 18 17 18 16 17 16 14 14 13 12 9 11
CHI 46/36 10 36 .217 NC   36 35 32 27 27 27 26 26 25 25 24 24 22 22 21 22 20 19 20 18 19 18 16 16 15 14 11 13
NYK 44/38 10 34 .227 NC 38   37 34 29 29 29 28 28 27 27 26 26 24 24 23 24 22 21 22 20 21 20 18 18 17 16 13 15
PHX 47/35 11 36 .234 NC NC NC   32 27 27 27 26 26 25 25 24 24 22 22 21 22 20 19 20 18 19 18 16 16 15 14 11 13
ATL 45/37 14 31 .311 NC NC NC NC   32 32 32 31 31 30 30 29 29 27 27 26 27 25 24 25 23 24 23 21 21 20 19 16 18
MEM 46/36 19 27 .413 NC NC NC NC NC   36 36 35 35 34 34 33 33 31 31 30 31 29 28 29 27 28 27 25 25 24 23 20 22
ORL 46/36 19 27 .413 NC NC NC NC NC 36   36 35 35 34 34 33 33 31 31 30 31 29 28 29 27 28 27 25 25 24 23 20 22
WAS 45/37 19 26 .422 NC NC NC NC NC 37 37   36 36 35 35 34 34 32 32 31 32 30 29 30 28 29 28 26 26 25 24 21 23
DAL 45/37 20 25 .444 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   37 36 36 35 35 33 33 32 33 31 30 31 29 30 29 27 27 26 25 22 24
DET 45/37 20 25 .444 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37   36 36 35 35 33 33 32 33 31 30 31 29 30 29 27 27 26 25 22 24
NWO 46/36 21 25 .456 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   36 35 35 33 33 32 33 31 30 31 29 30 29 27 27 26 25 22 24
MIN 45/37 21 24 .466 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37   36 36 34 34 33 34 32 31 32 30 31 30 28 28 27 26 23 25
CHA 45/37 22 23 .488 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   37 35 35 34 35 33 32 33 31 32 31 29 29 28 27 24 26
MIA 44/38 22 22 .500 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 38   36 36 35 36 34 33 34 32 33 32 30 30 29 28 25 27
BKN 47/35 24 23 .510 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   35 34 35 33 32 33 31 32 31 29 29 28 27 24 26
SAC 46/36 24 22 .521 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 36   35 36 34 33 34 32 33 32 30 30 29 28 25 27
LAL 47/35 25 22 .531 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   NC 34 33 34 32 33 32 30 30 29 28 25 27
LAC 45/37 24 21 .533 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37 37 36   35 34 35 33 34 33 31 31 30 29 26 28
UTH 47/35 26 21 .553 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   34 35 33 34 33 31 31 30 29 26 28
SAS 47/35 27 20 .574 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   NC 34 35 34 32 32 31 30 27 29
HOU 45/37 26 19 .577 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37 36   35 36 35 33 33 32 31 28 30
POR 47/35 28 19 .595 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   NC 35 33 33 32 31 28 30
OKC 45/37 27 18 .600 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37 NC 36   36 34 34 33 32 29 31
BOS 46/36 28 18 .608 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 36 NC   34 34 33 32 29 31
PHI 47/35 30 17 .638 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   35 34 33 30 32
IND 45/37 30 15 .666 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 37   36 35 32 34
DEN 45/37 31 14 .688 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   36 33 35
GSW 46/36 32 14 .695 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   33 35
TOR 48/34 35 13 .729 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC   NC
MIL 45/37 33 12 .733 NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC NC 35  

What is a Tank Magic Number?

The NBA uses a lottery system to determine which teams get the best picks in the upcoming draft. The worse a team finishes in the standings, the better the chance the team gets a higher draft pick.

Every year a few teams seem to throw in the towel and tank in hopes of getting a higher draft pick.

The Tank Magic Number is the number of games a team needs to lose in order to secure a worse seed in the traditional standings.

Basically, it's the exact opposite of a traditional magic number.

We've taken the traditional standings and flipped them upside down, so in our table, it's still a race to the "top".

Assuming the "better" seed is actually a worse record (#1 seed is the worst record, #2 is the second worst, etc), here are the odds of getting the first pick for next years NBA draft:

  1. 14.0% chance of receiving the No. 1 pick
  2. 14.0% chance
  3. 14.0% chance
  4. 12.5% chance
  5. 10.5% chance
  6. 9.0% chance
  7. 7.5% chance
  8. 6.0% chance
  9. 4.5% chance
  10. 3.0% chance
  11. 2.0% chance
  12. 1.5% chance
  13. 1.0% chance
  14. 0.5% chance

When a team is guaranteed a reverse top three seed, they are highlighted in green. When they are guaranteed a lottery pick, they are highlighted in yellow. When a team clinches a playoff spot, they are no longer a lottery pick, and are highlighted in red.

Two-Team Tiebreaker

  1. Division winner
  2. Better record in head-to-head games
  3. Higher winning percentage within division (if teams are in the same division)
  4. Higher winning percentage in conference games
  5. Higher winning percentage against playoff teams in own conference
  6. Higher winning percentage against playoff teams in opposite conference
  7. Higher point differential between points scored and points allowed

Three-Team Tiebreaker

  1. Division winner
  2. Best head-to-head winning percentage among all teams tied
  3. Highest winning percentage within division (if teams are in the same division)
  4. Highest winning percentage in conference games
  5. Highest winning percentage against playoff teams in own conference
  6. Highest point differential between points scored and points allowed

Tiebreaking prodecures from NBA.com

Updated: January 20, 2019 3:00am ET