In the least surprising news of the day, the Rockets failed to move from the fourteenth spot in the draft lottery, watching division rival New Orleans Hornets land the chance to draft Anthony Davis with the first pick of the draft. Coincidentally, those same rivals had just been sold by the NBA to Tom Benson at a rate much higher than expected. Was the first overall pick in the package? (In all seriousness, there is no way that Stern could rig the lottery. It's independently certified by Ernst & Young, and there are multiple other third parties in the lottery room.)
For the Rockets, the result was almost inevitable. They had less than a two percent chance of advancing into the top three, but watching Adam Silver pull out the Rockets logo first was nonetheless crushing.
However, the lottery will have a substantial impact on the Rockets chances to land a star this summer. Because the Nets failed to move up as well, they were forced to send their lottery selection to the Blazers as part of the Gerald Wallace trade they made at the deadline. This makes their chances at acquiring Dwight Howard all the more difficult this summer.
Will Brook Lopez (in a sign-and-trade presumably), MarShon Brooks, and future picks be enough to land Dwight? You have to believe the Rockets can beat that offer in a second. That is perhaps the only consolation on yet another frustrating night as a Rockets fan.