WNBA Draft 2020 date, TV channel, pick order, odds & everything else to know
The 2020 WNBA Draft has a unique opportunity in front of it, even if it occurs in a less-than-ideal situation.
Due to the postponement and outright cancellation of most sports because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) — including the 2020 Women’s NCAA Tournament — the WNBA must conduct a virtual draft. That means WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert will receive no reactions when she calls the names of each player selected, nor can we see the reaction of the players themselves.
But: The WNBA will have no competition from other events, live or otherwise, as it conducts its draft. The league will have a chance to showcase its next group of stars in a spotlight it has never had before.
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That includes players such as Oregon’s Sabrina Ionescu, the runaway favorite to be the first overall pick in the draft.
With that, here’s everything you need to know about the 2020 WNBA Draft, including the date, TV schedule, location, picks, updated betting odds and more.
When is the WNBA Draft in 2020?
The entirety of the three-round WNBA Draft will take place on Friday, April 17, at 7 p.m. ET. The league decided to keep its scheduled draft date in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic and will conduct the event virtually, similar to how the NFL is handling its draft.
Where is the WNBA Draft?
The draft, originally slated to be held at Nike New York Headquarters in New York, one of the regions most deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It will now be conducted virtually in line with social distancing guidelines.
“The WNBA Draft is a time to celebrate the exceptional athletes whose hard work and dreams are realized with their selections in the draft,” Engelbert said in a statement. “Safeguarding the health and wellbeing of our prospects, players, employees, and everyone connected to our game as well as the general public is paramount. With that in mind, we will work diligently with our broadcast partner, ESPN, to create a memorable but virtual event that appropriately honors these accomplished athletes.”
How to watch WNBA Draft 2020 live
The decision to air the 2020 WNBA Draft on ESPN did not come without controversy; initially, ESPN elected to air it on ESPN2 instead of its main channel, despite there being no live sports or other events for the draft to compete with (ESPN’s watch guide simply had “movie” airing on ESPN). ESPN later pivoted so that the WNBA would run on its main channel.
Here is the full TV schedule and streaming options for the 2020 WNBA Draft:
WNBA Draft pick order 2020
Each of the three 12-pick rounds will take place on the same day; the New York Liberty, which own the first pick of the draft, will not have another selection, barring a trade, until Round 3 with the 26th overall pick.
The Dallas Wings have the most picks of any team in the draft, with six, including four in the first round. They’re followed by the Atlanta Dream, with five total picks; every other team has at least two picks except the Las Vegas Aces, who have just one in the fourth-to-last pick of the draft).
WNBA Draft odds 2020
Oregon’s Sabrina Ionescu is the runaway favorite to be selected No. 1 overall by the New York Liberty in the 2020 draft. BetOnline (via SportsInsider ) has her listed at -2000 odds to go No. 1 overall, and +700 not to go No. 1 overall. Ionescu’s teammate Satou Sabally and Baylor’s Lauren Cox are next up in the projections; they’re projected at -175 and +155, respectively, to go No. 2 overall. You can take either of those options or the field at +800 to with the second pick.
Next up are odds for the fourth overall pick (presumably because Sabally and Cox will be selected with the Nos. 2 and 3 picks) are Texas A&M’s Chennedy Carter (-150), UConn’s Megan Walker (+175), Cox (+700) and the field (+700).
WNBA Draft No. 1 overall pick history
Ionescu is slated to become Oregon’s first-ever No. 1 overall pick and the fifth such selection to hail from the Pac-12. Below is a rundown of the former No. 1 overall picks, dating back to the inaugural 1997 WNBA Draft:
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