There was a time a few weeks ago where we wondered if Syracuse sixth man Dion Waiters was going to get into the lottery portion of the NBA draft.
But in recent weeks he has rocketed up draft boards, to the point that Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo is reporting this:
The Cleveland Cavaliers’ intrigue with selecting Syracuse guard Dion Waiters with the fourth overall pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft has gathered significant momentum, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
The Cavaliers haven’t been able to get Waiters to visit Cleveland for a workout and meeting with officials, but it hasn’t extinguished management’s ever-evolving fascination with choosing Waiters at No. 4 – especially if the Cavaliers are unable to secure Florida guard Bradley Beal.
This smells of a smokescreen to me. Cleveland does like Beal but would need to trade with the Bobcats to get up to the No. 2 spot because Beal is not falling past the Wizards at No. 3. Was this leak their way of telling the Bobcats to back off on the price — taking on Tyrus Thomas — because they will be happy drafting at No. 4.
Waiters is moving up the boards because teams see a scoring spark plug off the bench. He is strong and his drives to the rim are aggressive, especially if he turns the corner off the pick-and-roll (which he reads well). He also defends. If his can develop a steady jumper… well, that’s why he’s suddenly going so high on draft boards.