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Monday, July 4th, 2011 at 9:25 am  |  20 responses

Cleveland Cavaliers Say Tristan Thompson Was ‘a Very Easy Pick’


The Cavs surprised many when they picked Tristan Thompson in the NBA Draft this summer, but to them, Thompson was an absolute no-brainer. From the Plain Dealer: “Now 6-8 and 20 years old, Thompson spent a year at Texas as a defensive force, was named Big 12 Freshman of the Year, and got enough attention that Cavaliers GM Chris Grant claims he’s been tracking the long power forward since he was in high school. The fact that he was the fourth pick wouldn’t have been a surprise if you saw what the Cavaliers’ scouting team did: The team’s scouts salivated over Thompson’s 7-2 wingspan, his 38.5-inch vertical leap and his 2.4 blocks per game. (Though not so much over his 49 percent free-throw shooting.) ‘We just love what he’s about and how he would fit into our organization,’ Grant said when introducing Thompson and No. 1 pick Kyrie Irving. ‘This was a very easy pick,’ Grant said. It was such an easy pick that Grant promptly made room on the squad for Thompson to grow and develop when he traded J.J. Hickson to Sacramento on Thursday. The glut of power forwards is now somewhat smaller, and Thompson’s path to a starting position is more direct.”

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  • BRAVO

    Of course it ws, he’s gonna b like drake to you guys. TORONTO !

  • Zabba

    49% free throws? unless this guy’s Shaq, I see him turn into a Dalembert.

  • Migs

    As a Torontonian, I’m happy for the kid, but I’m just as glad they Cleveland let Jonas V slide down.

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    in college he was like a Tyson Chandler-mini, really towered over a lot of forwards with his length…gonna be a different travel in the NBA, he’ll have to improve that jump shot. We’ll he might have all next year to do it… :(

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    Please, please work on those free throws TT! With the lockout coming, you have all the time in the world to do it!

  • http://www.hoopsvibe.com/features/overdribbling chiqo

    the jumper wouldn’t be as much of an issue if he had a post move or two. cavs def could’ve moved back a few slots to pick him up.

  • iCARNACKi

    I had a real issue with Cleveland passing on Knight & Williams for Thompson & Irving but I’m kinda coming round to it now. They’re building a team, not a bunch of role players with a star… they’ve done that and it didn’t work.

    I’d like Cleveland to truly do the dirty on LA and steal DeAndre Jordan whilst simultaneously lucking out on a Top 5 pick next year and Sacramento just managing to finish outside of the lottery…

    … Am I asking for too much?

  • Se11

    DJ will not be going anywhere. Clippers!

  • greg

    i dont think you would want to miss out on next years lottery i mean there are so many good players. i am happy the raptors picked a project player. next year we can have harrison barnes(who i wanted this year) quincy miller, perry jones, kabongo. i hope the raptors pick in the top 5 again, cleveland too so they can get somebody on the wings

  • BEZ

    ‘This was a very easy pick,’coming from the same people WHO SAID NO TO A HICKSON for Amare deal LOL Thompson doesn’t stand a chance with these clowns

  • http://slamonline.com Wagers

    Hell yeah it was an easy pick, losing is like breathing in Cleveland, Why would they actually want to make that organization good with a decent pick? I really feel bad they have such a dim witted GM and Owner.

  • Dave19

    Greg, I think he’s talking about the protected first rounder acquired from the Kings in the Casspi/Hickson trade… Cavs would get it next year only if Sacramento makes the playoffs (protected in ’12 through pick 14). That is ideal becaus the double-dip that is the 2012 draft is likely to still feature talent as low as 15… 2013 and beyond likely won’t offer the same kind of pool… So let’s hope the Kings can get the talent playing competitive ball soon.

    And iCARNACKi, while I love DeAndre as a player, do you really think he’s the kind of center that would compliment Thompson? He has no offense other than alley oops and tip ins, and he shot 45% from the line last season. His strengths are also essentially the same as Thompsons (except Jordan has size and Thompson has more length)… I just can’t imagine that being the kind of backcourt that would advance against any real team… They would be, obviously, a tough pair on defense, but offensively they would offer no post presence really, and what great teams don’t have that? Is there any Championship teams that didn’t have at least 1 offensively gifted player starting at the 4 or 5? Nowitzki, Gasol, Garnett, Duncan, Shaq, Sheed, and then more Shaq and Duncan, plus David Robinson.. You have to go back to Michael Jordan’s Bulls… And the Cavs already had a megastar to try and repeat that… It went well. =P

    The Cavs need a center who can score and perform at an overall all-star level, and a wing player who can score at an elite level. If they can acquire those in the next 2-3 drafts, then they can field a team that can compete (this also assumes they will acquire the right role players) But nothing short of that will get them past the ECF… Period. This all of course, is speculated only with the assumption granted that Irving and Thompson will perform and the team stays in each of their directions… And Thompson is a question mark at best. (a question mark with a high ceiling, mind you)

  • http://SLAM FLIGHT 9

    I have no problem Cavs geting this guy. BUT they should have slide down to maybe the 8 – 10th pick and they should still got him with someone else tru trade. I mean lets say they trade with detroit maybe they got a rip hamilton or just 2 players they can use but definitely not as high as the 4th overall dumbass!!!!!

  • iCARNACKi

    @ Dave19

    Well wrote comment.
    I guess I was thinking more in terms of Cleveland’s biggest and hardest to fill hole being at C and DeAndre being the highest upside FA C available. I didn’t really consider the offensive shortcomings that it would create in the post… good point. I agree that they need an offensive post presence at C but they are very hard to find so I wouldn’t be adverse to offering Jordan a bit more than the notoriously stingy Clippers are willing to pay and ending up with at the very worst an extremely lengthy, high upside and good defending frontcourt. I think we can all agree that the way this Cleveland team wins is by acquiring an offensive minded wing player… hopefully in next year’s draft. If they can get a great scoring SG & SF I think it might offset any offensive shortcomings in the post… might. @ FLIGHT 9 initially I too was angry at Cleveland not moving down and still taking Tristan but then I started to consider that if Cleveland truly do think that he is one of the pieces to help move this team forward then I am glad they took him at #4 rather than gambling that he might be there later… don’t you agree? If Tristan can average a double double whilst playing excellent defense then I think we need to consider that a win, right? There were very few stars in this draft and if Tristan can be a solid starter in the L then what more can we ask from a #4 pick? He was one of the more safe picks in this draft, I think at worst he can be an unspectacular starter at best an All star PF. He seems to me to have a very low bust potential… and after what Cleveland has been through its better to hit a guaranteed double rather than going for a HR and potentially whiffing.

  • greg

    its hard to justr worry about getting the perfect C because its not only a spot the cavs need to fill, but its the hardest spot to fill in the game. i wouldnt get deandre though because he is gonna want a payday and the clippers will match any deal because the fans love him

  • kyle

    like someone said earlier i was stuned by the pick at first but its grown on me. since everything ive read about him has said he plays D with tenacity and a nastyness it seems that his worst case scenario is becoming something like udonis haslem. hes still young enough that he might grow a bit more and will obviously fill out in the next 2 years. my issue was with the 32nd pick, i would have loved to see them roll the dice on jeremy tyler, he could turn into a very solid nba C and if not they arent out much considering they turned it into 2 pick that are just to be throw into a future trade.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    “We think it was pretty easy to replace JJ Hickson with a 20 year old version of JJ Hickson. We aren’t upset, although, everytime we see Amar’e we start to weep uncontrollably.” – Dan Gilbert.

  • http://dsjfklf.com Jukai

    ^^
    LOL

  • GM

    Some of these comments are misguided. The cavs were willing to trade Hickson, the Suns were not willing to trade Amare last year. So no, the cavs could not have gotten Amare for Hickson. Do your homework before posting ignorant comments…

  • KO-08

    @nbk
    Thompson is a much better and rebounder than hickson is already. He plays with a high motor, which is something that angered the Cavs coaching with Hickson; at times, he just wandered around. Im glad JJ is gone, he thinks too much of himself for sure.

    Secondly, TT and Kyrie both already have chemistry; they have been friends for a while, and the can grow up in the NBA together, feeding off of eachother, learning together. A dynamic duo for the future.

    What they also loved was these guys’s character. they both are humle young men, not into their ego. They have characters that will be great for developing team chemistry, which is something any playoff team needs when the pressure comes to them.

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