As of now, the Cleveland Cavaliers are projected to have the 14th overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, with a small likelihood to jump way up. If that happens, it will make the draft very interesting, as the Cavs already have a lot of talent on their roster. But like I said, that probability is very slim, and chances are, Cleveland will stick at 14th with their pick.
There are many options that the Cavs can take, one being trading the pick, which I highlighted in another article. If they do not trade the pick and select someone 14th overall, it could very well have an immediate impact on the Cavs’ rotation, playstyle, and more. Here are some options that I thought of that could be selected by the Cavs during the NBA Draft, with these three guys definitely coming to mind, in particular.
#1: Malaki Branham
What’s not to like with Malaki Branham? He averaged 13.7 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per night while shooting 41.6% from 3, with 2.8 attempts per night for the Ohio State Buckeyes. Another scoring guard off of Cleveland’s bench would really be beneficial, especially if Collin Sexton does potentially go elsewhere via restricted free agency, or Caris LeVert is not as impactful as some might have hoped. Personally, I would not go for Branham, as it seems like Sexton wants to return to the Cavs, and LeVert should have a bounce-back year next season.
That said, Branham could be another viable shot creator and shooter for Cleveland, so in this case, let’s assume the Cavs select Branham in this sense. Maybe Branham will get some time in the G-League like James Bouknight of the Charlotte Hornets. Bouknight was selected 11th overall in the 2021 NBA Draft and was expected to go higher, so this was a great selection.
However, Bouknight only played 31 games for the Hornets, and only 9.8 minutes in those games. The G-League is definitely a good option for Branham if he is selected by the Cavs, but personally, I think he is not the best player Cleveland can realistically draft at 14; he’s a player that could be in the conversation, one would think, though.