I understand totally. Really, I do Cavs fans. In a perfect world we would draft Noel…go back to the lottery with our pick or someone else’s and get Parker or Wiggins next year. Don’t get me wrong, that would be awesome. But teams consisting of starting top-5 picks just do not happen through the draft. That is fancy free agency signing, pay cuts, and ACL tears/Head-cases preventing Max Deals. That does not happen through the draft.
I’ll explain briefly why:
- Kyrie and Tristan were drafted the same year. They will both be eligible for significant extensions in a few years.
- Dion will promptly follow after that.
- If we draft Noel, give him a half a year to rehab, he will be due for a decent extension in 2016-2017 probably. When Kyrie, Tristan, and Dion are already on the books-likely on hefty contracts.
- Then we get Wiggins or Parker next year and they’ll be due for extension in 2018-2019.
It is a reason Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka, James Harden, and Jeff Green aren’t all playing together. It’s a reason Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Chris Bosh had to cohesively go down to Miami together. It’s a reason Carmelo Anthony banded with Amare and they couldn’t get their "3rd" guy-because Amare was too greedy with his contract. It’s a reason the Clippers are in a pickle with the Chris Paul situation. (If they resign him, they may have to trade Bledsoe and Jordan for cheaper contracts) It’s a reason anyone East of Houston is on-board with a Dwight-Harden-Paul tandem. It means that Jeremy Lin, Chandler Parsons, Terrence Jones and/or Omer Asik may be up for grabs. (Cheap STARTERS) Indeed Andrew Bynum, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and D.Fish have multiple rings. Last I checked that’s a 2005 10th pick, a Draft day trade, a 3rd overall acquired via trade, and a veteran on a cheap contract. Indeed Boston snatched one with the era of the big three. Last I checked that’s two trades and a 10th pick putting in work.
The point is that it is unrealistic to expect Cleveland to keep drafting in the top 5 for consecutive years and keeping them all together enough for them to develop into contenders. That’s not going to happen. A line-up of Irving, Waiters, Wiggins, Thompson, and Noel would undoubtedly be a sight to see. But the only way that you’ll see that is probably at an All-Star game in 2018.
I’m with Nick and Dan Gilbert on this one. This is the last time for a while the Cavs need to be in the lottery. We have Dion Waiters, Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson and a top pick this year. Teams can barely hold on to three top 5 picks, let alone four. So this is why there’s so much rumbling about "what to do with the pick".
I believe Chris Grant is faced with these questions: Which core is better?
- Kyrie, Thompson, Nerlens Noel- Trading Dion in the future?
- Kyrie, Dion, Thompson-Trading down in this draft for a veteran like Danny Granger on a flexible contract?
- Kyrie, Ben Mclemore, Dion- Using a two-guard a sixth man hoping Lebron comes back and trading Tristan?
- Kyrie, McLemore, and Thompson-Drafting over Dion’s current spot with plans to eventually use him as trade bait?
The combinations are endless, but the fact of the matter is they are faced with a choice to have 4, and from those 4 choose three to stick with on large deals and use the 4th as trade bait.
It’s a tricky thing to maneuver. So while people are hoping and wishing for that star-studded line-up built through the draft, they need to understand that it’s likely unrealistic. When Grant says "Build" through the draft, he literally means it. "Build" your team with assets acquired through the drafts. That could mean keeping some players or trading some players acquired through the draft.
In a perfect world the Cavs would tell Cuban to draft Shabazz Muhammed at 13. (Since we can’t trade before he picks) Have them trade with us after they select for the 31, 33, and Orlando’s 2nd rounder next year.
With our First Pick we draft Alex Len. (A bit of a "reach" but I think it’s the best choice)
With the 19th pick grab Sergey.
If he is outside of the top-ten, we wouldn’t really have to worry about extending Shabazz anything beyond what a OJ May would receive. Alex Len figures to be a faster Marc Gasol type. His contract may be a little on the heavy side but I can’t see it being a MAX contract. Based on Noel’s abilities and reputation as a successor in the line of Dwight-Anthony Davis-Noel, he’ll probably get a max deal by default.
With some smaller nifty moves we can have a core with flexibility and a tad bit of financial freedom.
And the best part about it, their deals are manageable and they can be allotted time to GROW together as a unit. Sergey, Len, and Shabazz wont even attempt to command as much as Noel, Wiggins, Parker, or McLemore. (Who I see as a future JR Smith)
In this logic, I think I would stick with, as far as MAX contracts Kyrie, Dion, and Tristan. But that’s just me. Plus I think Mike Brown would be happy with that.