Zion Williamson is the ultimate prize.
Though RJ Barrett, Ja Morant and plenty other top-tier prospects will reward NBA teams for their losing endeavors in 2018-19, the spring-loaded Duke freshman is the obvious crown jewel of the class.
Averaging 21.2 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.9 blocks while shooting 66.2 percent from the field and posting the best qualified box plus/minus since 2010-11 (with room to spare), he's one of the best NCAA products in recent memory, promising enough to inspire frenzied tanking from a select few squads.
But we're not here to shine yet another spotlight on Williamson so much as highlight the five teams best positioned to earn the top lottery odds in pursuit of his services. And to determine both the outfits comprising the bottom-feeding quintet and the order of these rankings, we're getting objective.
Four metrics matter: win percentage, net rating, net rating over the last 10 games and remaining strength of schedule, per Tankathon (harder is better, for our purposes). By summing the z-scores in each of the four categories for all 30 teams in the Association, we can come up with the ultimate tanking hierarchy, ranging from the Milwaukee Bucks (6.694), Toronto Raptors (4.669) and Golden State Warriors (3.166) to our five glaringly negative representatives.