NBA Draft Lottery was meant to be for the Cavs

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Cavs win 1st overall pick in 2011 NBA Draft

It was meant to be; bookends on the most controversial free agency in sports history.

8 years ago, LeBron James was the best available player in an insanely stacked draft class that included James’ now-teammates Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, as well as Carmelo Anthony. While this year’s draft class is nowhere near as valuable, the Cavs, seeking their first number one overall pick since 2003, entered the lottery hoping to reverse the curse that descended on Quicken Loans Arena last July.

In a move that made the draft lottery Cinderella story complete, Nick Gilbert, owner Dan Gilbert’s 14-year old son dealing with a nerve disorder, represented the team in at the lottery.

It was almost as if the Cavs simply couldn’t lose.

As Dan Gilbert said after the lottery, “it’s the luck of the Nick…it’s a new year Cleveland, we’re coming back.”

Beyond getting the top overall pick for the fourth time in franchise history, the Cavs also gained the fourth overall pick in the draft.

Kyrie Irving, in attendance at the lottery, is the likely top pick for Cleveland. The Cavs are in desperate need for talent, especially at the point guard position. This past season, the Cavs traded Mo Williams to the Clippers in exchange for Baron Davis, and the draft pick that eventually led to the number one overall pick. While Ramon Sessions remains, Sessions is not the type of talent Irving represents.

Irving missed most of his freshman season at Duke due to injury, but is easily the most talented guard in the draft. He has the ability to score, speed in the transition game, and can get teammates involved with incredible passing abilities. Irving averaged 17.5 points and 4.3 assists in 11 games for the Blue Devils while shooting 46 percent from behind the arc.

The fourth pick, however, also gives the Cavs tons of leverage. While Derrick Williams and Enes Kanter will likely be gone in the second and third picks, the Cavs have a chance to snag another talented player to accompany Irving. Bismack Biyombo, provides size at the power forward position. A strong offensive rebounder and shot blocker, Biyombo could provide the Cavs with a spark inside alongside Anderson Varejao.

Or the Cavs could look elsewhere. Alec Burks, a shooting guard from Colorado, could be a great pick up for Cleveland. The Cavs desperately need an upgrade at wing, and Burks provides size, standing at 6’6”, and an innate scoring ability. Burks knocked down 20.5 points per game for Colorado in 2010/2011, which led the Big-12 in scoring. Additionally, he grabbed 6.5 rebounds per game, and the Cavs could definitely use extra help on the glass.

While these remain two of the best possibilities for the Cavs fourth pick, neither is a lock. And that is exactly the point for the Cavs in the 2011 draft. With two of the first four picks, there are many directions the Cavs can go and tons of potentially great players to choose from. Regardless of which players Cleveland picks, this could be the beginning of the turnaround at the Q.

-Jamie Arkin

 

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