3 draft day targets for Cavaliers at NBA Draft Combine

Jordan Walsh, Askansas Razorbacks. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images
Jordan Walsh, Askansas Razorbacks. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images /
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Cleveland Cavaliers
Kobe Brown, Missouri Tigers. Photo by Carly Mackler/Getty Images /

Draft Day Target No. 2: Kobe Brown, Missouri Tigers

NBA teams have to be wary of the one-year jump in a player’s shooting. Sometimes such a leap highlights an improvement in mechanics, comfort, etc and will set the new baseline for a player moving forward. All too often, however, it’s a one-year blip that will regress significantly to the mean. Davion Mitchell, for example, went in the lottery because he shot extremely well in his final season at Baylor, but has been a 31.7 percent 3-point shooter in the NBA.

The staying power of his 3-point shot will likely determine the career ahead of Kobe Brown. The 6’8″ combo forward out of Missouri shot 25.3 percent or worse in each of his first three seasons at Mizzou before shooting 45.5 percent from deep this past year. Was that improvement a fluke, or a sign of things to come? It’s almost certainly tied to the Tigers’ new head coach this past year, Dennis Gates, but does that mean Brown was held back before or boosted too far now?

If the shot comes through, the rest of Brown’s game is extremely valuable in the NBA. The former point guard can handle and pass the ball very well for a player of his size, and that height, weight and strength allow him to set up in the post and go to work against smaller defenders. He’s an excellent rebounder and can spark transition by handling the ball himself on the break. He is a solid defender, not an excellent one, but his high-energy style helps to make up for his mistakes.

If the shot is real, Brown is a first-round prospect. If it’s not, he’ll likely wash out of the league in a few seasons. Do the Cavs take a shot on the upside at 49?