INDIANAPOLIS — For just the third time in franchise history, the Indiana Fever will own one of the WNBA’s top draft selections when the annual draft takes place next April. By virtue of Monday night’s draw in the 2018 WNBA Draft Lottery presented by State Farm, the Fever have secured the No. 2 pick in next year’s draft, matching the highest pick in their history.
Following a WNBA-record 12 consecutive playoff appearances, and 13 playoff berths in their first 17 seasons, the Fever have endured a withering stretch of nearly two decades without ever benefitting from top draft selections. During Monday evening’s draft lottery, the Fever emerged with the second pick behind the recently relocated Las Vegas franchise. Chicago received the third and fourth picks as pre-lottery odds stayed identical with the final draw.
“We have the opportunity to bring in one of the top two available who we can develop and build around for years to come,” said Fever President and General Manager Kelly Krauskopf. “There is a lot of talent in this draft. It is an exciting time for our franchise and our fans.”
By missing the 2017 WNBA Playoffs, Las Vegas (formerly the San Antonio Stars), Indiana, the Atlanta Dream and Chicago Sky each qualified for the annual lottery drawing. Atlanta’s spot in the lottery belonged to Chicago as the result of a trade last summer. Lottery odds were based on the cumulative records of the two most recent regular seasons (2016 and 2017), with Las Vegas owning the most chances to land the top pick (442 out of 1,000) and a guarantee of at least the third pick. Indiana had 276 chances out of 1,000 to win the top pick and Chicago had 282 chances with combined chances from the Sky and the Dream.
Indiana is the WNBA’s only franchise to go without a top-four selection for more than a decade, last receiving a lottery pick 13 seasons ago with the No. 2 selection of Tan White in 2005. The Fever’s only other top-four pick was the No. 3 selection of Tamika Catchings in 2001. The Fever and New York Liberty are the only clubs in league history with as few as two top-four selections in franchise history.
Top Indiana Draft Picks by Overall Selection
No. 1 – none
No. 2 – TBD, 2018; Tan White, 2005
No. 3 – Tamika Catchings, 2001
No. 4 – none