Cavs: Suggested late first-round draft target Precious Achiuwa would make a ton of sense

Forward Precious Achiuwa #55 of the Memphis Tigers celebrates after a win. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)
Forward Precious Achiuwa #55 of the Memphis Tigers celebrates after a win. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Cavaliers could maybe look to add another 2020 draft pick.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are currently set to pick fifth overall in the upcoming draft, which is going to be conducted virtually on Nov. 18. At that selection, should the Cavaliers keep it, as I firmly believe they ultimately will, there’s a few logical prospects that’d seem reasonable.

Auburn’s Isaac Okoro, Florida State’s Devin Vassell and Deni Avdija of the I-BSL’s Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv come to mind, given that all three in the near future, frankly, would project to be an upgrade over Cedi Osman. That’s even more so in relation to the defensive end, and as far as looking onward, for their potential on-ball.

And it’s uncertain whether or not Dylan Windler, who did not at all in 2019-20 due to injury, will end up being that sort of player, albeit he should be a key bench piece, with his shooting/finishing capabilities, so we’ll see.

So when looking at the 2020 NBA Draft for the Cavs, though, that #5 pick would seemingly highly likely, per a report from’s Chris Fedor, be a “wing or big.” That’s provided, per Fedor, that LaMelo of the NBL’s Illawarra Hawks or Georgia’s Anthony Edwards do not fall to that point, but that wouldn’t appear at all likely.

As a side note, in terms of bigs at that point, USC’s Onyeka Okongwu or Dayton’s Obi Toppin, could would seem to be possibilities, but Toppin, for one, given major defensive question marks, I’d pass on for Cleveland.

From there, however, it wouldn’t be shocking to see the Cavaliers either look to acquire a second-round pick via purchase and/or dealing a future second-round pick, or with how the novel coronavirus pandemic is set to impact the league, Cleveland could perhaps even purchase a late first-round selection.

Clubs that are of the contending variety could very well look to avoid adding a rookie and/or paying a fully-guaranteed first-rounder salary.

That’s seemingly according to Forbes‘ Evan Dammarell, who suggested in that scenario, which, how Cleveland owner Dan Gilbert is never one to be deterred from spending, Cleveland could look to draft Memphis big Precious Achiuwa, Stanford lead guard Tyrell Terry or TCU guard Dezmond Bane.

To me, of the three here, though, while a high-level shooter in Bane could be feasible, and I get where Dammarell’s coming from with Terry, another prospect with big-time shooting potential, and with how Matthew Dellavedova’s expiring, Achiuwa jumps out.

Achiuwa would be a sensible late first-round add by the Cavaliers.

Achiuwa, as Dammarell pointed out, is a player that projects to be able to guard multiple positions, feasibly the 4, and with good lateral quickness, is fully capable of defending on the perimeter in some matchups. Achiuwa, in some matchups, could fill in at the 5, too, and if he gets ample experience over time, he could bring a rotational rim protecting element for Cleveland in his minutes-share.

The 6-foot-9, 225-pound Memphis product had 1.9 blocks per game in his lone collegiate season, to go with adding 1.1 steals per contest. His athleticism and functional strength allows him to be a productive post-up defender, and he’s a decent rotator to shooters.

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For the Wine and Gold, having a multipositional defender the likes of Achiuwa, to pair with Andre Drummond, perhaps, and/or Kevin Love in some stretches would be nice to have for Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff. And particularly if Jordan Bell were to not make the team eventually, given how his deal next season is non-guaranteed.

Moving along, though, while Achiuwa has a ways to go offensively, as Dammarell hit on, his power should translate for him inside as a roller and driving threat in some instances.

Now, Achiuwa does need to cut down on turnovers, as he had 2.8 giveaways per contest.

But having a big who can put the ball on the deck some and make plays in settled situations and be an active driver in transition could provide Cleveland with much-needed energy in stretches.

Achiuwa, also when looking at the offensive end, would be a difference-maker on the offensive glass as well, seemingly in the scenario the expiring Tristan Thompson is not back next season. The Memphis product had a healthy 3.0 offensive boards per contest in 2019-20, and his strength and leaping ability often enables him to have an impact throughout games in that regard.

Achiuwa’s shot selection at times is an issue, and that’s fair to say, but him showing flashes of catch-and-shoot three-point viability is a positive, albeit jump shooting is not a selling point for Precious, really.

Nonetheless, with the Cleveland Cavaliers, should they add Achiuwa by suggested late-first purchasing, Achiuwa could work extensively on that area, and with how Larry Nance Jr. has proven to be a real deep ball threat, Achiuwa could over time, too. Achiuwa could again also get some buckets off-the-bounce, and at times some in the post for the Cavs, although he is raw overall on offense.

In any case, looking onward, Achiuwa, who is a terrific athlete, a player who could be a key plus defender, and could have some stretch big promise in coming years, would be an addition that’d make a ton of sense for Cleveland. That’d be in the scenario Dammarell seemingly touched on with a late additional first.

Next. Cavs 2020 NBA Draft: Deni Avdija playing the 3 and 4 is selling point for him. dark

Perhaps if the Cavs were to look to trade Kevin Love down the road, Achiuwa could eventually be groomed as his long-term replacement, and be brought along slowly in a player development-oriented situation with Cleveland.