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The Cleveland Cavaliers have defied the odds and landed the No. 1 pick, again.
They could really go in any direction here, but with this roster lacking a long-term option at center, Joel Embiid seems like the perfect piece to fit the puzzle.
At full strength, he's a game-changer who offers centerpiece potential as a go-to offensive option and dominant rim protector. Andrew Wiggins fits here too, but I don't think he gives the Cavaliers the immediate results that Embiid can just by being in the game. And he doesn't offer the same level of upside, either.
Embiid had established himself as the top prospect in the draft prior to a back injury that knocked him out the last month of the season. At this point, we're still in wait-and-see mode until he decides which teams he plans on taking physicals for—and obviously, whether his back checks out.
Assuming Embiid takes one for Cleveland, and he clears medically, I'm just not sure how it can pass on this type of two-way upside at center.
We're not just talking about a raw 7-footer—Embiid is crazy skilled with post moves for days, from jump hooks and dream shakes to up-and-unders and spin moves.
Defensively, he has the ability to change a game by shrinking the rim he's defending.
Embiid has no reason to rush back to events like the NBA Draft Combine, where he just didn't have anything to gain. Don't take his lack of participation as a red flag.
For what it's worth, he told Sirius XM Radio that his back is "100 percent; no pain, nothing. I been working out, just to get back in the shape," according to A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com.