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4 Players Cavs Should Look at With No. 5 Pick in 2019 NBA Draft
- Updated: May 20, 2019
With the No. 5 overall pick, the Cavs will have their pick of players whose draft stocks are already climbing.
So, who will the Cavs select with their pick? Here are a few players they will certainly want to consider:
1. Cam Reddish
This time last year, if the Cavs fans had been told they would get the opportunity to select Cam Reddish in the first draft following LeBron James’ departure, they’d be simply ecstatic. In fact, before the 2018 NCAA men’s basketball season began, Reddish was the No. 2 ranked recruit ahead of Zion Williamson.
His 6-foot-8 frame and athletic ability wowed scouts, and his ability to shoot from nearly anywhere on the court and then play lockdown defense was also cause for excitement. When he got to Duke University, however, Reddish was quickly established as the third option behind teammates R.J. Barrett and Zion Williamson.
As a predominately on-ball player in high school, Reddish never was able to get comfortable at Duke and struggled mightily, shooting just 35.6 percent from the field.
If he were brought to Cleveland, however, he would quickly become one of the top ball-handlers on the team and would be given ample opportunity to succeed.
Reddish was seen as a potential top pick prior to his season at Duke. If he ends up living up to that early projection, the Cavs could end up with the steal of the draft.
2. Darius Garland
Garland is 6-foot-2 guard who can score from anywhere on the court. Sounds quite a lot like Collin Sexton, no? For that reason, some fans might think selecting Garland could be somewhat redundant, but considering who the Cavs just hired as head coach, it might be the perfect combination.
John Beilein made a name for himself at the University of Michigan as an offensive genius who lived and died by the 3-point shot. That mentality sounds quite a lot like that of some the best teams in the NBA right now.
Last season at Vanderbilt University, Garland averaged 16.2 points per game on 53.7 percent shooting from the field and 47.8 percent from beyond the arc. That’s shockingly similar to Sexton’s rookie averages with the Cavs, when he averaged 16.7 points per game on 43.0 percent field-goal percentage and 40.2 percent from the 3-point line.
Teams such as the Golden State Warriors and Portland Trail Blazers have both proven that a backcourt made up of two score-first guards can most certainly work. The Cavs could be the next team to employ that approach by drafting Garland.
3. De’Andre Hunter
Another two-way player, Hunter could be a fantastic addition to the young Cavs roster. At 6-foot-7, 225 pounds, Hunter is an imposing frame that can get inside and score from deep. While he averaged just 0.9 3-point attempts during his two-year career at Virginia University, he did shoot an impressive 41.9 percent. That is a good sign despite the small sample size.
A comparison that many experts have made when it comes to Hunter is to Toronto Raptors star Kawhi Leonard. They have similar body types and both proved that they could muscle their way inside at the collegiate level.
In fact, Hunter is considered to be even further along as an offensive weapon compared to Leonard when he was drafted in 2011.
If Hunter could develop into a player anywhere near the caliber of Leonard, the Cavs would quickly become a force in the Eastern Conference once again.
4. Jarrett Culver
Culver became the darling of the 2019 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament when he helped lead Texas Tech University to the championship game. Still, at just 6-foot-5, Culver is a bit undersized for an NBA forward, and may lack the handling skills to be a true guard.
Those question marks don’t take away from what he does bring to the table, however. He averaged 18.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 3.7 assists at Texas Tech, and showed tenacious defense throughout the season.
He also proved that he has the personality to lead a team when it matters most. With a young team like the Cavs, and a first-time NBA coach in Beilien, a born leader could be the perfect player to add to the roster.