- We’ll update our Team Capsules with more specific info once the lottery is complete.
2008-09 Record: 66-16
Draft Picks: 30, 46
Key Free Agents:
Zydrunas Ilgauskas (ETO)
Anderson Varejao (PO)
How They Got Here:
By being extremely good at basketball and having a player that is a freak of nature. But seriously, this team took one of the best individual seasons ever and matched it with an incoming all-star (Mo Williams) and surprisingly great seasons from Delonte West and Anderson Varejao to basically save basketball in Cleveland by giving Lebron a potential reason to come back. And that they did it on defense, with some guys not really known for D (Ilgauskas, Szczerbiak, Daniel Gibson), is a testament to Mike Brown and of course, Bron Bron.
What They Need:
If they could possibly draft a top-notch butler or chauffeur for Lebron, someone that makes him really comfortable in Cleveland, I’d go that way. Maybe Eric Devendorf is available. But seriously, the Cavs frontcourt doesn’t look so hot right now, so they need to sure up some depth there. Varejao should be back, but expensive, Joe Smith is likely gone, Ilgauskas should be back but is old and Ben Wallace has the unfortunate situation of being Ben Wallace. JJ Hickson, by all accounts, was a nice pick, but they are going to need an experienced big man that can give them immediate minutes.
Who They'll Take:
This is an atrocious draft for big men, especially centers, and even the top guys, besides Griffin, look very suspect. So they need to just find a guy that can play solid defense and maybe knock down open 15-footers. Taj Gibson, Jeff Pendergraph, Dante Cunningham and Jeff Adrien seem exactly like the kind of guys that could flourish in Brown’s defensive system and overcome their lack of ideal NBA size by playing alongside Lebron. Josh Heytvelt would even be tempting, as long as they don’t ever let him hang out with Lebron.
Cleveland Cavaliers Draft History (since 2000)
2008: JJ Hickson (19)
2007: No Picks
2006: Shannon Brown (25), Daniel Gibson (42), Ejike Ugboaja (55)
2005: No Picks
2004: Luke Jackson (10)
2003: LeBron James (1), Jason Kapono (31)
2002: Dajuan Wagner (6)
2001: DeSagana Diop (8), Brendan Haywood (20), Jeff Trepagnier (36)
2000: Jamal Crawford (8)
Stephen Curry - PG/SG - Davidson
Tyreke Evans - PG/SG - Memphis
Blake Griffin - PF - Oklahoma
James Harden - SG - Arizona State
Jordan Hill - PF - Arizona
Ty Lawson - PG - UNC
BJ Mullens - C - Ohio State
Ricky Rubio - PG - DKV Joventut
Brandon Jennings - PG - Arizona
Hasheem Thabeet - C - UCONN