Diallo’s ball pressure and rebounding expertise would help the Cavs
Diallo has made his presence felt as a quality perimeter defender in the NBA to this point both with the Thunder and with the Pistons, and for stretches, would be a point-of-attack pest and also could be a viable chaser of movement shooters.
His fluidity, quickness and intensity on that end would mesh well with the Cavaliers, who have the likes of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen as paint erasers and versatile bigs, too.
Diallo has the capability to defend wings in some matchups as well, as he’s long been difficult to drive the ball on, and as a team defender and off-ball playmaker, his 6-foot-11 wingspan is definitely a plus.
That, and his athleticism and timing always aids him on the glass, too, where he’s posted a clip of 7.4 rebounds per-36 minutes through five NBA seasons. Along with that element, Diallo has proven to be a defensive playmaker, as evidenced by a steal rate of 1.9 and previously 2.0 per-36 minutes in the past two seasons, with a steal rate of 2.6 and 2.7 percent.
Diallo utilizes his length, active hands and ball pressure a bunch to make opponents uncomfortable as ball handlers, and they enable him to recover. The same goes for his lateral quickness and agility, and despite him being somewhat thin regarding his lower body, with a 202-pound frame making it somewhat unrealistic for him to defend more physical forwards, his length and activity can negate some of that concern.
Having players such as Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen, Ricky Rubio and/or possibly Donovan Mitchell around him could help, too.
Generally, Diallo’s wide-ranging defensive skill set would be valuable for the Cavaliers to have and could make them more versatile and in the same light, disruptive, in the process.
So how about the offensive end?