cleveland cavaliers may 2014 nba draft lottery

The Cleveland Cavaliers won the rights to the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft during the league’s annual lottery drawing on Tuesday after having only just a 1.7 percent chance of earning the top pick.

“It’s a really defining moment for us,” Cavaliers GM David Griffin said.

Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins, Kansas center Joel Embiid and Duke forward Jabari Parker are projected to be the three prospects that Cleveland decided on choosing with the No. 1 pick. Cleveland won the top pick for the second straight year and the third time in four years.

After selecting Kyrie Irving and Anthony Bennett, the Cavs have a first pick yet again. But who should they pick?

Here's a run down of the three prospects and how they would fit in with Cleveland. 

The Risky Prospect: Joel Embiid, C, Kansas

Embiid, a 20-year-old from Cameroon, has been considered by many people to be the consensus No. 1 pick. ESPN's Bill Simmons seems to be sold on Embiid already. Simmons called him the "7-foot Serge Ibaka."
Embiid was always going first. None of these teams was passing on him. Repeat: none of them.

Here’s what I can tell you: He moves around as effortlessly as a 7-foot Serge Ibaka; he’s such an athletic freak that he’s one of those “still going up as he’s finishing the dunk” guys; his freakish wingspan might make Jay Bilas pass out; he has been playing basketball for only four years (which seems impossible); he gave up a world-class volleyball career; he has 3-point range; he can shoot jump-hooks with both hands already; he couldn’t have seemed more coachable/agreeable/likable; he’s a hard worker with a goofy sense of humor; his voice is just a touch Mutombo-y (deep with a heavy African accent); and his friends call him 'Jo-Jo.' And again — his back seemed totally fine.

Cleveland finished 17th in defensive rating during the regular season by giving up 104.8 points per 100 possessions, according to ESPN.com. As a team, the Cavaliers also averaged a terrible 3.7 blocks per contest second worst in the NBA with the lone Minnesota Timberwolves finishing worse with 3.6 blocks.

The Cavs tried to bring Andrew Bynum this year but that experiment failed terribly. Embiid could help Cleveland right away defensively, but the fear that Joel might have long-term injury problems is valid.

The Cavs could easily:

a.) Draft Wiggins or Parker, and resign center Spencer Hawes. They also have Anderson Varejao (under contract for one more year) and Tyler Zeller to back him up.
b.) Draft Wiggins or Parker and find a center during the trade deadline. They would send Dion Waiters and some other pieces if you really want a center.
C) Draft Embiid, let Hawes go in free agency. Re-sign Luol Deng if possible.

Either way, Cleveland has a very tough decision on what to do with Embiid.

The NBA-Ready Prospect: Jabari Parker, SF, Duke

Out of these three prospects, the Chicago native Jabari Parker seems to be the most NBA ready. He averaged 19.1 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.2 blocks and 1.1 steals a night behind 47.3 percent shooting from the field and 35.8 percent shooting from behind the three-point line.

Parker was great for Duke this year, but his only weak spots were his 1.2 assists to his 2.3 turnovers a game and lazy defense. Parker will need to improve his playmaking and defense at the next level. The Cavs were 17th in defense this year, and Parker won't make them better in that area of the game like Embiid or Wiggins can.


According to sources, Parker was top of the Cavs' draft board for a long time, which is interesting. Out of the three prospects, Parker seems to be the least talked about, in my opinion. If Cleveland wants to get good right away and maybe convince Kyrie Irving to stay, Parker might be the best option.

But if they draft Parker, that would mean that Loul Deng will likely be on his way out and last year's first round pick Anthony Bennett would get even less minutes. Who knows though? Bennett wasn't a consensus No. 1 pick last year and Cleveland took a chance. I doubt they take another chance again in one of the best draft classes since 2003, though.

Do the Cavs think that Bennett could have a bounce-back season next year? That'll be something to keep in mind as June 26 inches closer.

Note: Cleveland could also move Bennett to the power forward (his natural position), and draft Parker and have him play SF if (big IF) Anthony can show some improvement next year or in the near future.

The Next Superstar? Andrew Wiggins, SG/SF, Kansas

Wiggins was great in his lone year in college. The 6-foot-8, 197-pound Wiggins averaged 17.1 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.5 assists in his freshman year at Kansas, showing incredible athleticism and making big plays for Kansas. Wiggins impressed scouts with a 44-inch vertical leap, via ESPN's Chad Ford.

Sports Illustrated's Ben Golliver is also sold on Wiggins as a player and wants Cleveland to draft him
If I were drafting for Cleveland, I would take Wiggins and not think twice. He fills an obvious hole, he pairs nicely with Irving, he’s got loads and loads of long-term upside and he restores some short-term hope to an organization that endured a rough 2013-14 season. With so many other questions — Waiters’ future, Luol Deng’s free agency and Varejao’s ability to stay healthy, among others — looming, Cleveland shouldn’t overthink this. Nab the guy who has the physical tools, the two-way game and the character to become a franchise talent.


While all of that is good, I wish people would stop comparing him to every single player...

With Luol Deng becoming a free agent, the Cavaliers might have a hole at the small forward position and will likely need a perimeter defender. Wiggins can be both for Cleveland if they draft him.


Wiggins could help Kyrie Irving develop and both players could be good in transition together. Wiggins' offense in transition was awesome in college, scoring 1.3 points per possession in transition, according to DraftExpress.com.

He also was good at getting to line at Kansas, too, getting to there 7.9 times per 40 minutes while making 78 percent of his attempts. Of course, Cleveland has another another option with Wiggins

"Sources in Cleveland say that Wiggins is the likely choice. The team feels he has the most long-term potential, helps them defensively right out of the gate, can replace Dion Waiters in the starting lineup while adding character to the team," ESPN's Chad Ford writes.

While playing Wiggins at the shooting guard spot isn't bad, his handles are a problem. He'd need to improve in that area to help Cleveland or else turnovers would be a huge problem for him.

Wiggins recently spoke to ESPN about his draft stock.

"I always put myself No. 1 above anybody else. That’s just me. I got a lot of confidence in myself. ... I think for me, Jabari or Joel, I think we all want to go No. 1. But it’s not the end of the world if we don’t because there’s been a lot of great players that ended up to be the best ever, and great Hall of Famers, that never went No. 1 and still had a great career."


andrew wiggins march 2014

The Cleveland Cavaliers have a golden opportunity here with the chance to get one out of the three solid prospects in this year's draft. Embiid, Parker and Wiggins can all bring something new and improved to the city of Cleveland and its fans. Though we all have opinions, I'm here to share my own one.

The player I think the Cavaliers should draft is Andrew Wiggins.

Wiggins has too much superstar potential to pass up, in my opinion. He is the better option for these Cavs, and don't even expect LeBron James to return to Cleveland because that will not happen.


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