With the top-overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers have quite the decision to make.
Although former Duke Blue Devils’ forward Jabari Parker supposedly topped their draft board throughout the season and Australian point guard Dante Exum is flying up boards, they are expected to take one of two former Kansas Jayhawks, center Joel Embiid or forward Andrew Wiggins.
Nate Duncan of Basketball Insiders believes Embiid is the better prospect.
I would say that I think Embiid is a better prospect than Wiggins. So I would not trade up to get him. I also think that Embiid makes too much sense for Cleveland, and wouldn’t buy the rumors about them not taking him. If they don’t, it would be a mistake. At number one, you always take the guy who is going to be the best player over the next 8 years, since if he works out that’s how long you’re almost guaranteed to have him on the roster. I believe that’s Embiid, and I think most people agree with me. Taking someone else just because he’s “more ready” to help them make a playoff push this year seems very short sighted.
Wiggins averaged 17.1 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.0 blocks per game for the Jayhawks last season while shooting 44.8% from the field, 34.1% from beyond the arc and 77.5% from the free throw line. Wiggins is ranked as the top prospect in the draft by Jonathan Givony of Draft Express and is projected to go number one overall.
Embiid is ranked second among all prospects by Givony. Embiid averaged 11.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.6 blocks, 1.4 assists and 0.9 steals per game while shooting 62.6% from the field, 20.0% from beyond the arc and 68.5% from the free throw line.