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Why Dion Waiters Will Prove to Be Major Mistake as No. 4 Pick in 2012 NBA Draft

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 28:  Dion Waiters of Syracuse greets NBA Commissioner David Stern (L) after he was selected number four overall by the the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft at Prudential Center on June 28, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Roy BurtonContributor IAugust 9, 2016

With the fourth overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers selected Syracuse guard Dion Waiters, leaving fans and experts alike scratching their collective heads.

Waiters was more than worth a high pick, but if the Cavs were that enamored with the 6'4" combo guard, they may have been able to trade down a few slots and still nab him later in the lottery.

Cleveland was in desperate need of someone to pair in the backcourt with Kyrie Irving, yet it's hard to justify the Waiters pick, especially since he never started a game in his college career. Atlanta's Marvin Williams is the only other player in NBA history who was selected in the lottery after never starting a single game on the collegiate level—he's had a hit-or-miss career until now that's been more "miss" than "hit."

Waiters also needs to work on his jumper quite a bit—he improved considerably between his freshman and sophomore years, but opposing defenses will still be able to sag off of him in favor of helping out on Irving.

Defensively, the 6'4" Waiters will be smaller than most of the other shooting guards that he'll be matched up with. With 6'3" Kyrie Irving, the Cavaliers will have one of the smaller starting guard tandems in the NBA.

Waiters was the first curveball in the 2012 NBA draft: Many pundits had Cleveland taking University of North Carolina forward Harrison Barnes at No. 4. But while the Cavs feel as though they made out with their pick, selecting Waiters that high may prove to be a costly decision down the road.

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