Houston Rockets get lucky, land third pick in 2024 NBA Draft

Could the Houston Rockets select Nikola Topic with the third pick?
Could the Houston Rockets select Nikola Topic with the third pick? / Seskim Photo/MB Media/GettyImages

Lady luck is notoriously fickle. She gives, and she takes away.

Yesterday, she was especially generous to the Houston Rockets. They were expected to land the ninth overall pick in the 2024 NBA Draft. Instead, they were blessed with the third overall selection.

A .500 team to land the third pick has been given a rare opportunity. The draft is designed to help the worst teams in the NBA improve. That doesn't apply in this case. The Rockets received this pick by way of the Brooklyn Nets.

Now, they have an embarrassment of riches. They could use this pick to improve in the short term, or they could continue to build on their future.

Houston Rockets have plenty of options

Before landing third, rumors were circulating that the Rockets wanted to trade this pick. It seems that Rafael Stone would like to flip this pick for additional assets.

That's still an option. It may even be a more attractive option than it was before. The third overall pick should have plenty of value on the open market.

At the same time, there has to be a temptation to make the pick. The Rockets have found some money here.

How should they spend it?

Houston Rockets land high pick in weak draft

It's worth noting that this class is seen as weak.

In all likelihood, the Atlanta Hawks will select Alex Sarr with the first pick. Sure, they have ample center depth with Clint Capela and Onyeka Onkongwu on the roster. Neither of those players has enough upside to justify passing on Sarr.

After that, this draft gets wild. The Washington Wizards have the second selection. They could use a point guard. Will they select Nikola Topic? Zaccharie Risachar is the consensus choice, but the Wizards are (relatively) wing-heavy.

Then, we've got the Rockets. As a team that nearly made the playoffs in 2023-24, they'll likely consider a wider range of options than the teams ahead of them.

They're certainly lucky to have those options.