Owning the first- and fourth- overall selection in the upcoming draft, the Cavs will have at least one crack at selecting the Wildcat forward who rose to a level of national prominence following his team’s win over the top-seeded Duke Blue Devils in the 2011 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Averaging 19.5 points and 8.3 rebounds per game this past season, the knock against the high-scoring forward is that his skill set translates to that of an NBA power forward with the ability to hit mid-to-long-range jump shots. Garnering comparisons to New Orleans’ David West, Williams will likely endure a litany of tests to see if he could in fact play a small forward role for the Cavaliers, vastly increasing his value and keeping him in the discussion with Duke’s Kyrie Irving at the top spot on the team’s draft board.
A confident 20-year old, Williams has gone on record to say that he is the “most NBA ready” of his peers and that he would “get back at any team” which would choose to pass him up at the June 23 draft. Likely going in the top two spots, there is a slim chance that Williams could still be available at fourth overall in the event that the Minnesota Timberwolves and Utah Jazz choose to avoid bolstering their already-deep power forward slots.
The 6-foot-9-inch, 240-pound Williams has obviously heard his detractors state their take on his future position, and insists that he is in fact a small forward who can merely play the power forward position if needed.
“I am a small forward that can play the four,” Williams said at the recently held NBA combine. “I am not going to shy away from going into the post if I have a mismatch—that is what I did this season. I had a lot of mismatches—slower guy, I take him outside and drive past him; smaller guy, I am going to be able to post him up.
Continuing their due diligence on other wing players, the Cavaliers held a workout for small forward Kawhi Leonard and shooting guard Alec Burks on Monday. Both players are anticipated to be selected within the top 10 come next Thursday. As stated in the WFNY Podcast last Friday, it is largely anticipated that the Cavaliers – given their large holes at the position – use at least one of their four upcoming selections to address the small forward or shooting guard position.
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill