Of the 60 picks in this year’s draft, a total of 28 – nine in the first round and 19 in the second – have been traded from one team to another. However, that number could have been even higher if not for the protections that were applied to several traded picks.
In some cases, those traded draft picks will be rolled over to 2021 with identical protections. In other cases, teams have been awarded a different pick (or two) as a consolation for not receiving the protected 2020 pick. And in a couple instances, the obligation from one team another has simply been extinguished by virtue of this year’s protections.
Here’s a breakdown of the traded draft picks that were protected in 2020 and what will happen with them going forward:
Cavaliers’ 2020 first-round pick (top-10 protected) to Pelicans
Initially traded to Atlanta for Kyle Korver, the Cavaliers’ top-10 protected 2020 first-round pick was flipped by the Hawks to the Pelicans a year ago when Atlanta moved up to No. 4 to draft De’Andre Hunter.
Because the pick landed at No. 5 this year, the Cavaliers kept it. Instead of owing New Orleans a future first-rounder, Cleveland will send its unprotected 2021 and 2022 second-round picks to the Pelicans.
Jazz’s 2020 first-round pick (1-7 and 15-30 protection) to Grizzlies
Part of the Mike Conley trade, this pick was protected on either end of the first round, since the Jazz didn’t want to give up a high lottery selection, while the Grizzlies preferred not to receive a pick in the 20s. It was protected this year as a result of landing at No. 23.
The Jazz now owe the Grizzlies their 2021 first-round pick, with the same protections (1-7 and 15-30). If it doesn’t land between 8-14 next year, it will become simply top-six protected in 2022.
Warriors’ 2020 first-round pick (top-20 protected) to Nets
It became fairly obvious early in the season that this pick – included as part of the Kevin Durant/D’Angelo Russell sign-and-trade, had no chance of conveying. The Warriors’ first-rounder ended up at No. 2 overall.
The Nets will now have to wait five years to get a pick from the Warriors, who owe Brooklyn their unprotected 2025 second-round pick.
Pacers’ 2020 second-round pick (45-60 protected) to Nets
The Nets are still waiting on this pick as a result of a 2016 trade which saw them trade Thaddeus Young for the first-round pick that became Caris LeVert. It was originally supposed to be a 2017 second-rounder, but has been protected since then — it landed at No. 54 this year.
The Pacers now owe the Nets their 2021 second-rounder with the same 45-60 protection. That protection will also apply in 2022. If it still hasn’t changed hands by then, Brooklyn will receive Indiana’s unprotected 2023 second-rounder.
Hawks’ 2020 second-round pick (top-55 protected) to Celtics
The Hawks owed Boston their top-55 protected second-round pick, but never really expected it to be conveyed. It was a placeholder in a 2019 Jabari Bird trade that saw Atlanta acquire some cash. Atlanta’s second-round pick this year is No. 34 and was instead sent to the Sixers, who would have received it if it fell anywhere between 31-55.
The Hawks’ obligation to the Celtics is now extinguished.
Trail Blazers’ 2020 second-round pick (top-55 protected) to Nets
Like the Atlanta/Boston pick, this was a placeholder pick, first traded way back in 2015 from the Trail Blazers to Orlando in exchange for Maurice Harkless. From there, it went to Cleveland in 2016, Atlanta in 2017, and Brooklyn in 2018 as part of the Hawks’ acquisition of Jeremy Lin.
Because the Trail Blazers’ pick, which landed at No. 46, was protected this year, their obligation to the Nets is now extinguished.