With the Cleveland Cavaliers having multiple holes to fill on their rebuilding roster, their draft strategy on Thursday can take a number of different directions. One intriguing strategy could be for the Cavaliers to take a point guard with the fifth overall pick, even though Collin Sexton was drafted last year to fill that role.
One question answered by Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com looked at the idea of drafting Vanderbilt University guard Darius Garland, which reportedly has the backing of new head coach John Beilein:
“The Cavs are so early into their rebuild that fit won’t be the driving force behind this decision. They are looking for the best player, regardless of position. They believe strongly in the Beilein-led coaching staff’s ability to make the pieces fit and get the most out of this young nucleus. Speaking of Beilein, as I have written a few times, sources say he likes the idea of a two-PG system, believing that it would make the Cavaliers extremely difficult to defend.”
While the team’s backcourt defense might suffer in the early going by taking this route, there are a number of current examples that indicate how using two smaller starting guards can work in the current NBA. Chief among these are the tandem of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum in Portland, along with Kyle Lowry and Fred Van Vleet for the new NBA champions in Toronto.
Reaching that level of success isn’t guaranteed, in part because Garland played just five games at Vanderbilt before undergoing season-ending knee surgery. However, regardless of his sparse resume at the college level, he’s expected to chosen early in the draft. That means a careful assessment of what he can bring to the table for the Cavs is vital to get full value for the pick.