Thinking Out Loud with The Roadman
My 2019 NBA Draft Notes and Thoughts
The Cavaliers will pick 5th and 26th and will look to add another first round draft pick as they trade JR Smith’s favorable contract. To do so, the Cavs will have to take on a player’s unfavorable contract to get that first round pick. But I expect John Beilein’s new look Cavaliers to end up with 3 first round picks on Thursday night.
The Cavaliers will try and move up to number 3 if the Knicks are willing to trade the pick and then draft RJ Barrett, but since the Knicks did not get Anthony Davis it’s likely now they will keep that pick and draft Barrett. But Koby Altman should do everything he can, and then some, to try and acquire that number 3 pick to get Barrett, because after Barrett there is a major drop off in talent.
Since they did not land Anthony Davis, might the Knicks be interested in Kevin Love to team up with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant should those two free agents end up in New York? The reports are that the Cavs are shopping Love and they should. He’s 31 and healthy right now, and his value may never be higher in the future. Don’t be surprised if David Griffin and the Pelicans inquire about Love to bring a veteran to what will be a very young team and Griff and Love have a great relationship.
If Barrett is gone at 3, and the Cavaliers really want Garland, they may have to move up to number 4 in a trade with New Orleans to get him because there are reportedly several teams like the Bulls and Suns who want Garland as well. I’m not sure what it would take to move up one spot, but hopefully the relationship that Koby Altman has with current Pelicans GM David Griffin will be an advantage for the Cavs.
Will the Cavaliers take a chance on point guard Darius Garland garlic at number 5? He could be teamed up in the backcourt with Colin Sexton, but the reason that may not work is those two are good, but not great outside shooters like Steph Curry and Klay Thompson or Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. They are more like Kyle Lowry and Fred van Vleet but the Cavaliers do not have a Kawhi Leonard on the team to play off of and both are a liability defensively!
But the reason Garland and Sexton could work is, this is at minimum, a two to three year rebuild, so those two would have time to continue to develop their shot and learn how to play some form of defense. Also remember that Garland’s dad, Winston, played in the league, so there is NBA DNA in Garland just like with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson whose fathers played in the league!
The most ready “plug and play” guy that should be available for the Cavaliers at number 5 is Virginia’s 3 & D wing player, De’Andre Hunter! The drawback on Hunter is, he may not have as high of a ceiling as other players in this draft.
I would be intrigued if I were the Cavaliers and the Hawks, who reportedly want to move up for De’Andre Hunter, called and offered 8 and 10 for pick number 5. The Cavs could then take the best player available at 8, and then maybe roll the dice on boom or bust type players in Kevin Porter Jr from USC or Sekou Doumbouya from France. Just a thought.
More than likely if the draft goes to form where Williamson, Morant, Barrett go 1-3, the Cavaliers will be picking from a group of Darius Garland, DeAndre Hunter, Jarrett Culver, Cam Reddish and Coby White.
Here are my top 10 players in the 2019 NBA draft:
1- Zion Williamson 6’6-275-Duke PF
2- R.J. Barrett 6’7-208-Duke SG
3- Ja Morant 6’3-170-Murray St. PG
4- Darius Garland 6’3-173-Vanderbilt PG
5- De’Andre Hunter 6’8-222-Virginia PF
6- Jarrett Culver 6’7-194-Texas Tech SG
7- Cam Reddish 6’8-208-Duke SG/SF
8- Coby White 6’5-191-North Carolina PG/SG
9- Nassir Little 6’6-224- North Carolina PF
10- Sekou Doumbouya 6’9-210-Guinea PF
European players to keep and eye on that have first round talent and potential and the Cavs may have interest in:
PF- Sekou Doumbouya
C- Goga Bitadze
F- Luka Samanic
The Cavaliers reportedly like Oregon’s F/C- Bol Bol and could target him with their second first round pick (26th), or trade up to get him in the mid first round. Durability is his biggest question mark, as his season was cut short due to a foot fracture.