The Cleveland Cavaliers are about to lose Kyrie Irving and possibly LeBron James next offseason. If the Cavs lose both of these players one key factor could be looked at. They did not draft any young players behind them to develop.
The last time the Cavaliers had a pick in the draft was 2015 when they drafted Tyus Jones in the first round with the 24th overall pick and Sir’Dominic Pointer in the second round with the 53rd overall pick. Jones was traded for two second round picks which the Cavs drafted Rakeem Christmas and Cedi Osman. After two years Osman is finally on the roster. Pointer is playing for the Canton Charge and averages almost seven points per game.
So after two years of no draft picks the Cavaliers are now faced with the possibility of losing their two best players in two consecutive years. Not having young prospects on your team can kill you because there is no next man up to fill the void of older veterans.
In a New Arena article by Jason Fray he ranks the Cavaliers 30th, which is dead last in the best talent under 25. He says the only player on the Cavaliers roster that is under 25 is Kay Felder. The Cavs will be looking at a massive rebuilding project if they lose their key players.
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In addition, the Cavaliers have seen that it is hard to trade for players that can help you if you don’t have any young talent on your team. The Cavaliers failed in their attempts to get Paul George and it looks like they will miss out on Carmelo Anthony now too. The Pacers traded for young players like Victor Oladipo who has only played four years in the league and Domantas Sabonis who has played only one year in the league. The Cavs just didn’t have those kinds of prospects. Carmelo does not want to play for the Cavaliers if Irving is not on the team, and Irving doesn’t want to be on the Cavaliers, so that means Carmelo will most likely not be on the Cavaliers roster in the beginning of the season.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have a first round pick in the 2018 NBA draft because they traded their 2017 first round pick to the Portland Trail Blazers who eventually drafted Caleb Swanigan. The Blazers gave the Cavaliers their 2018 first round pick. Depending on where the Blazers finish will determine where the Cavaliers pick. It will most likely be a mid-round pick. The Blazers had the 15th overall pick last year that was traded to the Kings. They picked Justin Jackson. There is the potential that the Cavaliers will be picking that high in the draft as the Blazers have made no major changes to their roster, and the West has become stronger this offseason.
Jeremy Woo of Sports Illustrated has the 15th pick being Troy Brown of Oregon who is a player that has a 6-foot-11 wingspan and can guard multiple positions on the floor. He describes him as a good ball-handler and passer that keeps the offense moving. In addition, he says his jump shot is improving. Brown would be a good pick if he can live up to what is being projected by him. He would be a good player to develop because of his ability to play defense and then the fact that his offensive skills are improving.
The Cleveland Cavaliers will need this upcoming draft to be able to finally have a young core of players to develop. A backup plan is always needed in case a player decides they want to leave abruptly.