With the NBA season 10 games or so in for every team and the 2014 draft looming as the best in 10 years CBS Sports produced their first mock draft. They used a specific method to decide the draft order, that they explain in their piece, that led to the Cleveland Cavaliers drafting #5 overall and unlike the last few years only have one 1st round pick. Based on their projections the Cavaliers selected:
Dante Exum, SG, Australia: If the Cavs are in this spot, then absolute disaster has struck and you could be looking at a new GM. Let’s pretend, though, and they would want to trade this to whoever wants Marcus Smart since they have Kyrie. If they don’t move it, Exum fills the need and has great athleticism. Dion Waiters can work on-ball as a sixth man and Kyrie has a better transition running mate.
Exum is a 6’6″ combo guard out of Australia whose father was also drafted, by the Denver Nuggets, in the NBA draft. Exum was expected to play in college this year but decided otherwise. He showed well at the FIBA Under 17 game in 2012 and Under 19 game in 2013. Draft Express has him as the #3 player to be chosen this year. Exum could fit well with the team but a small forward would be a bigger need, or a big bodied center, if the team fails this greatly in 2013-2014.
For the Cavaliers this would be a worst case scenario. The return of Mike Brown along with the off-season additions of Anthony Bennett, Jarrett Jack, Earl Clark, Andrew Bynum and Sergey Karasev would of accomplished very little. Also they would not be bad enough to get a top 3 pick in the loaded draft. It is very early to suggest that A) the Cavs will finish this poorly, B) who they should draft and C) who will be available in this year’s draft class.
Either way it is fun to look at given the hype of the draft class, but for the first time in 4 years the Cavs will be hoping to not have representatives at the Lottery event in New York. Will GM Chris Grant look to make moves this season that could either add to this draft class or a big move to trade away this pick? Could the team capitalize on the idea of a huge 2014 draft class to get more for their unknown draft spot then in years past? Or will the Cavalier faithful once again be hoping for the lucky bounce of the ping pong balls on draft night?