At 47-33 with just two games left in the season, the Jazz cannot finish with one of the NBA’s eight best records, meaning that they’ll keep their top-22 protected pick.
If the selection was any lower than 22nd, Utah would have had to ship the pick to Minnesota as part of a previous trade.
The Timberwolves will now automatically get the Jazz’s 2010 first-rounder
The Star Tribune adds
If the season ended Sunday night, the Wolves would be in line for the draft’s sixth (their own), 17th (Miami’s) and 28th (Boston’s) picks.
The Wolves will get Utah’s pick in 2010 if it is not one of the draft’s top 15.