Future BayHawks Watch:Cleveland Cavaliers Mock Draft Tracking

Monday, June 8, 2009

Previously I looked at some mock draft projections for the Philadelphia 76ers. Now that the Cleveland Cavaliers have also been eliminated from the NBA playoffs, I'd like to look at what some people out there are forecasting for the Erie BayHawks' other NBA affiliate.

Ths Cavs, by virtue of their NBA-best 66-16 regular season record, own the rights to the last pick of the first round (pick number 30 overall). They also received the Bulls second-round pick (number 46 overall) from the Ben Wallace trade and gave up their other second-round pick to Miami (number 60 overall) as part of the Darnell Jackson deal. Speaking of Jackson, last year the Cavs sent Jackson down to Erie as a rookie on two separate occasions, so it's certainly within reason to think that one or both of the Cavs' picks in the upcoming draft may spend at least a little time with the BayHawks next season.

Below you'll see four draft sites and their projections for the Cavs' two selections in this year's draft, which will take place June 25:

#30: Rodrigue Beaubois, PG, Cholet, International
#46: Damion James, PF, Texas


#30: Taj Gibson, PF, USC
#46: Robert Dozier, PF, Memphis

#30: DaJuan Summers, F, Georgetown
#46: N/A

#30: Derrick Brown, F, Xavier
#46: N/A

Interestingly, three of the four sites have the Cavs taking a forward to bolster their frontcourt in the first round with the lone exception being Draft Express, which goes off the board a bit with a foreign point guard prospect. The underlying message here is clear: the Cavs need frontcourt scoring, specifically in the low post. And this became painfully obvious to anyone who watched them against Orlando.

Both Joe Smith and Zydrunas Ilgauskas are nothing more than pick-and-pop, standstill jump shooters at this stage of their careers. Neither Ben Wallace nor Anderson Varejao is an offensive threat. So, that begs the question: how do the Cavs feel about the development potential of J.J. Hickson and/or Darnell Jackson?

Neither got much run as rookies for a Cavs team that was supposed to contend for a championship last season. In 51 games this season, Jackson averaged less than 1.9 points and 1.7 rebounds in 8.4 minutes per game. Similarly, Hickson played in just 62 games, averaging 4 points and 2.7 rebounds in 11.4 minutes per game.

If the Cavs do draft another forward, someone's got to go. There's no room to be developing three young power forwards at the same time, especially when you're a franchise that wants to win now in an effort to keep LeBron James happy and home in Cleveland.

In fact, it is because of the LeBron's impending free agency and fans' nervous concern over losing the MVP after next season, that they may very well have the most heavily scrutinized number 30 pick I can ever remember.

For a look at the Cavaliers' draft history, check out this page from ESPN Insider.


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About this blog/blogger

Blog Talk BayHawk is an unofficial Erie BayHawks blog covering the NBA D-League. It features opinions and information about the NBADL and the Erie BayHawks. Blog Talk BayHawk is written from a basketball fan’s perspective to fill In the gaps left by professional journalists’ coverage of BayHawks basketball and the Erie professional basketball scene.

Matt Hubert is a 25-year-old writer and basketball fanatic born and raised in Erie, Pa. He graduated from Mercyhurst College in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in English and a dual concentration in writing and creative writing. Matt's not wavering from his stance as a lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan, but he will cover the BayHawks' NBA affiliates in Cleveland and Toronto when it makes sense to do so throughout the year.

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