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Another report that Cavaliers really loved Joel Embiid’s workout

Jun 17, 2014, 3:05 PM EST

Joel Embiid Joel Embiid

With just more than a week before the draft, every source around the league is spinning. Hard.

Agents are trying to spin their guys up the draft board by creating false demand. Teams are spinning to try to hide their actual intentions — for example giving conflicting information out about a player who worked out for them.

Enter the Cleveland Cavaliers, who have the No. 1 pick. There is more smoke around the Cavaliers draft moves than a Cypress Hill concert.

Joel Embiid worked out for Cleveland last week and the first leaks out of that were about red flags in his medical report — Embiid missed the end of the season in Kansas with a stress fracture in his back and while he’s a top three pick teams wanted their doctors to get a good look at him first.

Ever since those initial reports, however, more and more people have said the Cavaliers actually loved Embiid’s workout and his back checked out fine. The latest of those is Chad Ford at ESPN in his latest mock draft ($$).

Embiid did a full workout there in front of the Cavs’ front office and owner Dan Gilbert. Multiple sources said that the team was blown away with the workout. Embiid even ended one session by launching and nailing a series of 3s. Directly after the workout, two different sources told me that Embiid was the strong favorite to be drafted by the Cavs. Even Gilbert was on board.

The team owner is at the workout and has to be on board with the pick? And you wonder what the main difference is between the Cavaliers and Spurs organizations.

As a rule of thumb teams will take a big man over a wing if they grade out evenly, under the “you can’t teach size” premise. Which suggests that even if the Cavaliers think Andrew Wiggins is on par with Embiid, the size of the 7’0” center makes his skill set harder to replicate.

A lot of draft boards have Embiid as the Cavaliers pick.

The Sixers are reportedly higher on Wiggins, but are concerned he will not fall to them at No. 3, so they have offered that third pick and Thaddeus Young to the Cavaliers in a trade the No. 1. If the Cavs really like Embiid but want to make that trade, leaking info about Embiid’s back may be a way to try to scare off the Bucks at No. 2 (who are reportedly leaning Jabari Parker anyway). Of course, the Bucks worked out Embiid and had their doctors look at him, with reports saying Embiid got a clean bill of healthy from the Bucks doctors.

It’s all part of the game.

Do the Cavaliers move that pick in a deal with the Sixers? Depends on how they answer this question: Do the Cavaliers think Embiid is a transcendent player? If so, if they think Embiid is a future top 10 player in the NBA and can be a guy you build a champion around (with Kyrie Irving), then you take him. Talent wins in the NBA, you need those elite guys. But if you think Embiid/Wiggins/Parker are potentially very good but not future top 10 talents, you make the deal.

Joel Embiid throws down dunks in workout

  1. pl4tinum514 - Jun 17, 2014 at 3:22 PM

    Why wouldn’t Gilbert want to be at the workout for the potential #1 overall pick? Gimme a break. Is he not allowed to be excited and want to see the workout for himself? He only wasted 20 million dollars on Mike Brown to earn this pick!!

    • badge3832 - Jun 18, 2014 at 10:09 AM

      Mike Brown’s 20 million had nothing to do with this. It was a ping-pong ball.

  2. nflcrimerankingscom - Jun 17, 2014 at 3:38 PM

    “The team owner is at the workout and has to be on board with the pick?”

    Nowhere does it state Gilbert ‘has to be on board’ with the pick, you journalist hack.

  3. loubearkane - Jun 17, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    Too many concerns with Embiid you have to go Wiggins. If Embiid doesn’t get stronger and stay healthy he will be in a long line of coulda woulda’s and you can’t fudge up the 1st pick twice in a row

    • pl4tinum514 - Jun 17, 2014 at 4:11 PM

      Personally I think he’s worth whatever perceived risk there is. His back was a compression issue, not a severe damage issue. It was just from overuse – as we know he is a complete gym rat. He just needs to take it down a notch or pace himself and he should be fine.

      • loubearkane - Jun 17, 2014 at 4:27 PM

        He will be a complete hit or miss , if he hits it could be huge.

      • sportsfan18 - Jun 17, 2014 at 5:19 PM

        Greg Oden,

        Would have been a BIG hit…

        But he too was either a hit or a miss…

        So, what else factors into a decision like this?

        Let’s say the team drafting number say selected number just last year and swing and MISSED on it…

        Should they now take a risk, even a minor one or go with a pick that is more sure (know there are no guarantees)?

        The Cavs, just by being the Cavs, CANNOT miss on this pick. If this kid’s back goes out, even 3 yrs from now, OUCH.

        Then, 5yrs, 7, yrs, 9yrs from now we’ll be watching Parker and Wiggins in all star games etc… and…

        The Factory of Sadness lives on… and on… and on….

        Nothing about the Cavs organization says they should select a 7 footer with a back issue…

  4. ljl2 - Jun 17, 2014 at 4:13 PM

    There is no mixed reports. Tony rizzo is the only person who has said anything besides cavs being impressed. He’s a hack. He and his partner were talking about Embiid’s ability to play the 3 today. Do you need anything else? He’s a loon that only casual basketball fans would listen to. Anyone who actually follows the NBA and Cavs thinks he’s an idiot. Today twitter just mocked him before people couldn’t stand it and turned it off. Seriously, no mixed reports. Everyone on same page except one idiot.

    • jeffkx - Jun 17, 2014 at 4:20 PM

      Thank you, glad I’m not the only one who feels this way. Rizzo is a complete clown. Btw, his co-host today said Embiid could play SF in the NBA..all you need to know about that radio show..

  5. thesixersbench - Jun 17, 2014 at 4:31 PM

    That Cypress Hill joke was actually pretty funny.

  6. phillysports1 - Jun 17, 2014 at 5:38 PM

    Good news !

  7. floreskins - Jun 17, 2014 at 5:44 PM

    Sounds like this is shaping up to be a great day for the Sixers…which of course means all of these talks are false and we’ll get stuck with Parker.

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