Cavs: Examining a potential Evan Mobley-Jarrett Allen duo long term

USC Trojans big Evan Mobley drives. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
USC Trojans big Evan Mobley drives. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

This past Tuesday’s 2021 NBA Draft lottery night was the night that accelerated the Cleveland Cavaliers‘ rebuild. Going into the lottery, the Cavaliers had the highest odds at the seventh overall pick but were able to jump into the top three.

Cade Cunningham, Evan Mobley, and Jalen Green have been noted as being the Big Three in this draft with all of them likely becoming perennial All-Stars in the NBA. With Cunningham seemingly highly likely to go #1, the Cavs should have the choice of selecting whomever the Houston Rockets don’t take between Mobley and Green.

Being looked at as a blank slate team, the Rockets could go with either but in this hypothetical, they go with Green. With that, the Cavaliers would look to take Evan Mobley which would bring an interesting dynamic to the team.

Mobley is a 7-foot big with great perimeter instincts, putting him in prime position to be the NBA’s next “unicorn.” In his lone collegiate season at USC, Mobley was exquisite, averaging 16.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 2.9 blocks per game, shooting 57.8 percent from the field and 30.0 percent from three-point land.

Being 7-foot, Mobley is extremely mobile and coordinated, having the ability to defend against smaller guards/wings on the perimeter and using his 7-foot-4 wingspan to alter shots, as KJG’s Robbie DiPaola demonstrated.

Offensively, he has the ability to score from anywhere on the court, despite what the three-point percentages may say. Mobley has a fluid shot so it shouldn’t be long until he’s hitting the three-ball with ease. Mobley has great vision for a big, adding another layer to his offensive skill set. Overall, his feel for the game on the offensive end added with his length makes him a mismatch on this end.

The biggest gripe with Mobley is his strength/weight. Despite being 7-foot, Mobley weighs just 210 pounds, and of all 7-footers in the NBA, this would be the second-lowest weight with Aleksej Pokusevski being the lightest. Because of this, there have been times where Mobley has been overmatched due to his opponent “out-muscling” him both on offense and defense.

The likely position for Mobley to start his career is the power forward position, playing the center position in some instances, depending on the matchup. This means well for the Cavs as Jarrett Allen already occupies the center position.

Jarrett Allen is a free agent for the Cavaliers this season with all signs pointing to a re-signing. The duo would form a new age Twin Towers and considering their playstyles, they complement each other well. Looking at our backcourt tandem, surrounding them with more length and defense would only help to further enhance their fit.

There are some questions about that possible Mobley-Allen frontcourt pairing though, in fairness.

Along those lines, here, we’ll take a closer look at if/how a potential Cavs Mobley-Allen duo could fit long term.

The Mobley-Allen duo isn’t a seamless fit however and looking at the roster construction, the spacing could be an issue if Mobley starts Day-1.

Questions arise when considering how the Collin SextonDarius Garland tandem would work with three other sub-30.0 percent shooters filling out the lineup. And as a brief side note, for reference, even with Sexton recently being mentioned in trade rumors, if Cleveland ended up drafting Mobley, it’d seem far more likely he’d stick around than Green, for example.

Regarding the USC product though, would Mobley be a consistent threat from deep to start his career? With a full offseason to work on his shot, will Okoro be consistent from this area to keep defenders honest?

Those things could happen but the likely outcome is to bring Mobley off the bench to start with Kevin Love starting for now as his shooting can help open up the offense. As Mobley becomes consistent in that area, than the transition could be made to move on from Kevin Love whether it be via trade, a potential waiving down the road or perhaps a buyout at some point.

Looking deeper into the Twin Towers fit alongside the team’s guard tandem, what the guards lack in size defensively is made up for by Mobley and Allen. Offensively, Mobley’s pick-and-roll/pick-and-pop ability makes him a dynamic weapon for Darius Garland and would bring another aspect to the offense that would improve the outlook on that end for Cleveland.

And lastly, Mobley gives the Cavaliers another consistent scorer with his unique offensive game.

All in all, the addition of Evan Mobley via the 2021 NBA Draft would give the Cavaliers an offensive unicorn with real Defensive Player of the Year potential.

Next. Cavs: 2 realistic expectations for potential Jalen Green selection. dark

His skill set is ideal for today’s NBA and adding him to the Cavs’ current young core should make the team competitive now and for years to come.