NBA Lottery 2013: How Drawing Shakes Up Top of Draft

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IMay 23, 2013

Photo: Associated Press
Photo: Associated Press

When all was said and done in Tuesday's NBA draft lottery, the Cleveland Cavaliers came away with the No. 1 overall pick for the second time in the last three years.

The Cavaliers grabbed Kyrie Irving in the 2011 draft. That turned out to be the right pick, as the electric point guard went on to become Rookie of the Year before making the All-Star team this season.

But Cleveland wasn't the only lucky team in the lottery on Tuesday. The Washington Wizards rocketed all the way up to No. 3 overall from No. 8. 

Here's a look at whom I see being selected in the top five picks on June 27.


1. Cleveland Cavaliers: Nerlens Noel, C, Kentucky

There is a lot of speculation as to what the Cavaliers will do with the No. 1 overall pick. They have an obvious need at small forward, which has some believing they will grab Georgetown's Otto Porter. "A source with knowledge of the Cavaliers’ thinking" told Michael Lee of the Washington Post that the Cavaliers were "considering" Porter with the top pick.

There is also the possibility that the Cavaliers trade back, but that doesn't make much sense to me. Who would they trade back to get?

If they like Porter, they aren't going to trade back to get UCLA's Shabazz Muhammad, who has been sliding down draft boards based on an ailing jump shot.

Ultimately, while I like Porter, and he fits a need for Cleveland, I can't see the Cavaliers passing up Noel for him. Noel needs to add strength, but he has the potential to be a Anthony Davis-type player. After all, the Cavaliers weren't shy about drafting Irving on potential, who played a mere 11 games in college.

Easing Noel into the NBA behind veteran Anderson Varejao until he adds more strength is a solid idea.


2. Orlando Magic: Trey Burke, PG, Michigan

Kansas' Ben McLemore is a possibility here, but you have to like him a lot to pick him this high. There is no denying his potential as a scorer, but his inconsistency at Kansas—combined with concerns that he can be passive on the court—could see him slide past No. 2 overall.

What you see is what you get with Trey Burke. He showed the ability to both score and drive-and-dish at Michigan, and there's no denying his leadership qualities.

I like Burke succeeding Jameer Nelson in Orlando.


3. Washington Wizards: Otto Porter, SF, Georgetown

Otto Porter would be a logical selection for the Wizards if he's available at No. 3 overall. He's a do-it-all player who can make a big impact on both ends of the floor and is a hometown kid.

Porter would help the Wizards form an identity alongside young shooting guard Bradley Beal and point guard John Wall. Imagining those three together is enough to make anyone salivate.


4. Charlotte Bobcats: Ben McLemore, SG, Kansas

It's only fitting that the down-on-their-luck Bobcats would slide from No. 2 to No. 4 in the lottery, but it may not hurt them much if Ben McLemore can live up to his potential.

McLemore has one of the sweetest strokes in the class and posted a 42-inch vertical leap at the combine. For him, it comes down to how hard he works to iron out some of his inconsistencies. He has the ability to be a dynamic player in the NBA.


5. Phoenix Suns: Victor Oladipo, SG, Indiana

The Suns have a dire need at every position except point guard.

Victor Oladipo is one of my favorite players in the class. At 6'4", he is a bit short for a shooting guard (subscription required) in the NBA, but he's strong, tough and explosive.

Oladipo is already a menacing defender, whether it be disrupting offenses with steals and blocks or playing sound man-to-man defense. He's also a fierce competitor, which makes me think that he will improve every year. We already saw him make strides with his jump shot last season at Indiana.


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