NBA Lottery 2014: Best Options for Cleveland Cavaliers with 1st Overall Pick

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2014

Kansas' Andrew Wiggins dunks the ball during the second half of a second-round game against Eastern Kentucky in the NCAA college basketball tournament Friday, March 21, 2014, in St. Louis. Kansas won 80-69. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Jeff Roberson/Associated Press

Everybody wanted the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA draft, but it was the Cleveland Cavaliers that surprisingly earned the top spot in the lottery for the third time in four years.

ESPN noted how unlikely this was coming into the draft:

Here is a complete look at the order for the top 14 picks in June:

2014 NBA Draft Order
PickTeam
1Cleveland Cavaliers
2Milwaukee Bucks
3Philadelphia 76ers
4Orlando Magic
5Utah Jazz
6Boston Celtics
7Los Angeles Lakers
8Sacramento Kings
9Charlotte Hornets
10Philadelphia 76ers
11Denver Nuggets
12Orlando Magic
13Minnesota Timberwolves
14Phoenix Suns
via NBA.com

What will the Cavaliers do with the first overall pick now that they have it? While there are a number of excellent options in this deep class, here is a look at the most likely scenarios for the top selection.

 

Andrew Wiggins, SF, Kansas

Since before the start of the college basketball season, Andrew Wiggins has been considered the favorite for the first overall pick of the draft.

The first thing you notice with him is his elite athleticism, which was on display this past week in this image:

Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv notes that Wiggins thinks of himself as the top player in the class:

Although Cleveland selected Anthony Bennett with the first overall pick last season, he is still a few years away from reaching his potential. Additionally, he can be moved to power forward and contribute there as well as he can at small forward.

This means that the Cavaliers should not be afraid to draft someone at the same position with the first pick if he has the talent of Wiggins. The do-it-all prospect has the potential to be a superstar in the NBA and could force any team to regret passing on him.

 

Jabari Parker, SF, Duke

GREENSBORO, NC - MARCH 16:  Jabari Parker #1 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts during their game against the Virginia Cavaliers in the finals of the 2014 Men's ACC Basketball Tournament at Greensboro Coliseum on March 16, 2014 in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

While Wiggins has the advantage when it comes to athleticism and upside, Jabari Parker certainly seems more pro-ready, especially on the offensive end of the court.

The Duke star is a consistent shooter from the outside, but he can also drive past defenders and score at or above the rim. If opponents play too closely, he can get himself to the free-throw line and rack up points there.

Like many others, Reggie Miller has compared Parker's game to that of Carmelo Anthony coming out of college:

As a result, it is no surprise that he would be a consideration for the top pick in the draft. Jeff Goodman of ESPN thinks this would be a perfect fit for the Cavaliers:

Kyrie Irving has been a leader for this squad, but Dion Waiters is not efficient enough to be a secondary scorer on a good team. He has to reduce his role, and Parker can take over as a go-to option late in games.

While Bennett is once again not ready to take over as the starting wing, Parker could come in and help create the best young No. 1 through No. 3 in the league.

 

Joel Embiid, C, Kansas

LAWRENCE, KS - JANUARY 18:  Joel Embiid #21 of the Kansas Jayhawks reacts after scoring during the game against the Oklahoma State Cowboys at Allen Fieldhouse on January 18, 2014 in Lawrence, Kansas.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Joel Embiid might have the highest ceiling in this class as a player who could be a franchise building block at center. ESPN's crew all agreed with the Kansas star being the top prospect in the class:

The biggest downside is the potential for lingering back issues after the center missed the last few weeks of his college career.

Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports notes that this has affected Embiid's draft stock:

When healthy, however, Embiid has the potential to be a game-changing player. He is a dominant interior defender and could help any team become one of the best defenses in the NBA.

With Cleveland, he can become a building block for the future to pair with Irving as a quality inside-outside tandem that will be around for years.

 

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