The Cleveland Cavaliers are in the driver’s seat of the NBA Draft today. Many believe that the Cavs will look for ways to add veteran talent along with a high pick in the draft that many call the best in a decade. Yet is it possible, even at 5%, that the Cavs could go in the other direction and restart their rebuild via moves during the draft? Could they take advantage of this unique opportunity and draft to take a risk on youth? Lets take a look at the moves that could change the Cavs for a decade:
The Cavs Trade the #1 to the Orlando Magic for #4, #12 and Arron Afflalo
With the first pick the Cavs add a player in Afflalo that can provide a veteran influence but also could be moved for another asset. Affalo is a perfect fit next to Kyrie Irving with his ability to shoot and guard multiple positions. The Cavs also add 2 picks in the first 12 of a draft that could be all drafted in the Top 5 of last year’s draft. The Cavs could add a number of players with those picks including Joel Embiid at 4 and a number of players at #12. Yet that is not the only move:
The Lakers are looking for ways to shed Steve Nash‘s salary this year as well as add some veteran talent to work with Kobe Bryant and draw a max level free agent. In order to do so they are using the #7 pick as leverage. The Lakers will be able to get more from the #7 pick but Varejao is a solid power forward/center that plays great defense and good on the offensive end. The Lakers could also be interested in Jarrett Jack but his contract runs longer then the Lakers might like. Instead they can cut Hopson and Gee and have Varejao to show for it. The Cavs have Nash to help teach Irving the details of the position and the #7 pick to add more.
The Kings get a creative point guard that they are looking for. Waiters could be a star with the ball more in his hands. With DeMarcus Cousins the two of them would have a ton of emotion but could have a great pick and roll, pick and pop combo. Zeller fits well with Cousins, who is a bully in the paint, with his ability to hit the mid range shot and his small salary. The Cavs get their last Lottery pick by moving Waiters whose fit with Irving isn’t the best. The 8th pick in this draft should get a talent better then last year’s Rookie of the Year.
The results of these trades the Cleveland Cavaliers would have the following players left on their roster before the draft picks: Irving, Afflalo, Nash, Anthony Bennett, Tristan Thompson, Sergey Karasev, Jarrett Jack, Matthew Dellavedova and Carrick Felix. That roster is low on small forwards and centers which will need to be addressed in the draft. The following selections would be made with the 4 picks the Cavs acquired:
#4 - Joel Embiid – C
#7 - Doug McDermott – SF
#8 - Nik Stauskas – SG
#13 - Adreian Payne – PF/C
With the 4 picks the Cavs get possibly the best player/big in the draft, if healthy, to go along with the most pro ready pure shooting small forward in McBuckets. Stauskas could be a Klay Thompson type player with less height. Payne is a player that will fit perfectly in the David Blatt system of 4 players out. Added to the other youth on the team the Cavs could have a dynasty starting in 2 years that should last for awhile.
It wouldn’t make most Cavs fans, nor their owner, happy but it could end up being the best long term decision for the franchise. Could David Griffin have the guts to make these moves? Does it make sense to move in this direction?
Personally these move rely totally on Embiid’s health. A healthy Embiid surrounded by the 3 shooters taken in this draft and Irving could be the dynamite offensive team the Cavs want to put on the floor. This would allow Karasev, Jack, Bennett and Thompson more bench related roles in a few years with Nash and Afflalo providing veteran knowledge and minutes this up coming year.
Any interest in all these moves?