The Timberwolves tried various forms of luck, sent ambassadors young and old and generally hoped for the best over the past 13 years of the NBA draft lottery.

When the order of the first 14 teams was drawn Tuesday night, though, the Wolves tried something they haven't done since 2004: They watched from a distance.

They made the playoffs — remember? — and playoff teams aren't in the lottery. It's obvious, but it also felt strange.

The annual articles about how the Wolves have never improved their pre-lottery position — and in many cases have moved down from their spot, costing them a chance to draft everyone from Shaquille O'Neal to Kyrie Irving — will remain dusty.

There was no need to muse about who the Wolves would send to represent them, and I imagine the clicks from Minnesota fans on ESPN's fake lottery were way down this year.

Read Michael Rand's blog at