Tag Archives: NBA Draft Lottery


FoxSportsOhio.com’s Sam Amico weighs in on what Cavs G.M. David Griffin might do in the draft, about trade possibilities, LeBron James coming back to Cleveland and who the coaching candidates might be.

Sam Amico Photo


In case you missed it, here’s my weekly Wednesday appearance on 92.3 The Fan with Cleveland’s Talking Heads as we talk about the Cavs luck in the lottery and who they should draft #1 overall.

92.3 The Fan Logo David Griffin 2014 NBA Draft Lottery Photo


This quote from Cavs general manager David Griffin on ESPN SportsCenter caught my attention when I heard it last night. It could mean a lot of things from keeping the pick, to trading the pick, to keeping the pick and trading other players for an all-star caliber player. What do you make of it?……….

David Griffin – “We’re very open minded. We’re going to try to get radically better much quicker. We really feel like there’s a sense of urgency about improving our team as a whole and we’re going to look for the right fit in that, and we’re very open minded about what that means.”

David Griffin 2014 NBA Draft Lottery Photo


When you participate in the Olympic Games, to medal is something special. If you win, or finish first, you go home with the gold. If you happen to be the runner-up, your silver medal helps ease the pain a little. Even if you end up third, it still means you’re one of three best in the entire world and wearing that bronze medal allows you to hold you head high.

The 2014 NBA Draft Lottery was somewhat like the Olympics. Fourteen participants had a chance, some better than others, to finish first, second or third and walk away with a prize. But instead of medals of a different color and worth, the top three teams would be rewarded with the opportunity of drafting a potential franchise changing player. Possibly Joel Embiid, or Andrew Wiggins or maybe Jabari Parker. Which one is truly the gold? That is up for debate right now, but one thing that is not, if you finished first, second or third on Tuesday night, you were walking away a big winner and down the road maybe the biggest winner.

2014 NBA Draft Lottery Order

So congratulations, for the third time in the last four years to the NBA’s Draft Lottery gold medal winner, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Facing their greatest odds in the lottery, G.M. David Griffin and his team defied those odds, a  mere 1.7 percent chance of finishing first, and with the ping pong balls bouncing the right way again, the Cavs for the second straight year made it to the apex of the NBA Draft Lottery. They would have been happy with the silver or the bronze considering their odds, but finishing first is always better.

David Griffin 2014 NBA Draft Lottery Photo

This year’s top honor for one of the worst teams in the Association has people conjuring up memories of the 2003 draft that produced LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Three of those four have won multiple NBA championships. Granted James and Bosh had to join Wade to do so, but a championship is still a championship and Cleveland fans would take one any way they could get one.

Therefor supporters of the “Wine and Gold” are hoping that one of the top three  players in this draft, be it Wiggins, Embiid or Parker could ultimately lead the Cavaliers to a victory in the last game played during an NBA season, instead of winning an off-season lottery. Should that happen, which would mean finishing first when it really mattered, the city of Cleveland would be celebrating the ultimate gold medal, the Larry O’Brien trophy and their first NBA Championship!


I got to take part in a conference call with Cavs GM David Griffin and he answered our questions about winning the NBA Draft Lottery and who he might pick.

David Griffin Photo 5-13-14


As the Cavs get ready for yet another lottery pick, I figured why not get the 411 on some potential picks for David Griffin and the Cavaliers, that’s why I called the Senior Director of Scouting for the NBA Ryan Blake. You’ll be soaking wet with knowledge on these kids after you listen to this Podcast.

Ryan Blake - Senior Director of NBA Scouting


Tuesday night’s NBA Draft lottery is important in so many ways for the Cavs. First they’ll find out where they’ll be picking. They have a 1.7% chance of getting the first overall pick out of the number #9 spot. It has happened once before when the Bulls entered the lottery in the 9th spot and ended up winning the lottery in 2008 and selected Derrick Rose first overall. The Cavs also have a 2% chance of landing the second pick and a 2.4% chance of getting the third pick in the draft. That’s a 6.1% chance of moving up into the top three picks to have a shot at Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker or Joel Embiid.

But don’t forget other teams could leap frog the Cavs and bump them back to 10th, 11th or 12th spot.  However in the history of the lottery, 81% of the time the team in the 9th spot has selected 9th. That’s what happens when you don’t have enough ping pong balls in the hopper.

The second reason Tuesday night’s draft lottery is so important is that potential coaching candidates will be watching to see where the Cavs end up picking in the lottery and that could have a major effect on whether or not a candidate would consider the Cavs. Remember the Lakers, Knicks, Jazz and Timberwolves all have coaching openings and are all in the lottery just like the Cavs.

David Griffin Photo 5-13-14

The third reason the lottery is important to the Cavs is it will allow them to set up their first interviews with the coaching candidates on their list. My sources tell me that the Cavaliers have not interviewed any coaches yet, but will start in earnest post lottery. The front office, led by new general manager David Griffin, reportedly has been putting together a coaching list and the traits they’re looking for in their next head coach.

My first choice remains current Iowa St. head coach Fred Hoiberg. But sources tell me he may not want to leave the college ranks for the NBA just yet.  However, if I’m the Cavs I make that phone call and have him tell me no before you scratch him off your list.

The other names the Cavs could be considering are Adrian Griffin, Alvin Gentry, Mike D’Antoni, Coach K., Tom Izzo, John Calipari, Alex Jenson, Lionel Hollins, Nate McMillan, Mark Jackson, Vinnie Del Negro, George Karl, and David Fizdale. Leave no stone unturned. I may be missing a candidate or two, but you get the idea. Put a huge list together; see who has the traits you’re looking for in your next head coach and then make a phone call and see if they’re interested.

So the wheels will be put in motion once the draft lottery is decided. G.M. David Griffin will be representing the Cavs on stage Tuesday, not Nick Gilbert. Here’s hoping some of Nick’s luck rubs off on Griff so he can bring back one of the top three picks. If he does, that would make the Cavs job extremely desirable to all of the potential coaching candidates!


I caught up with my old partner Michael Reghi last night after the Cavs beat the Nets to talk about the 2013-14 season and what the future holds for Dan Gilbert and the Cavs

Roda and Reghi Photo




It seems like we say this every year but I really believe this time it’s true. This upcoming off season for the Cavs will be the most important in team history. Owner Dan Gilbert needs to decide which direction he’s going to take the team.

Dan Gilbert Photo@CavsDan has many important decisions to make. Does he make David Griffin his fulltime General Manager or does he go out and bring in new blood? Will he hire a President of Basketball Operations type? If he does, there are rumors circulating that the names atop that list are former “Bad Boys” Joe Dumars, who reportedly will resign his position with the Pistons soon, or Isaiah Thomas. If either one is hired, it’s possible Gilbert could keep David Griffin as G.M. and have him answer to Dumars or Thomas.

Whenever this brain trust is finally put together their first decision will be to decide should they keep Mike Brown on as the team’s head coach? If not, who do you replace him with?

After that decision is made, next on the check list is do you offer Kyrie Irving the maximum 5-year contract? Do you believe in his brittle body, but made skills enough to make him the focal point of your team moving forward? If you do offer “Uncle Drew” the max and he turns it down and wants a shorter contract, then do you avoid getting burned again like you did with a former local high school star turned NBA MVP and try and trade him if he’s sending you messages he could leave ?  If Irving does accept the max contract then you have to figure out if he and Dion Waiters can co-exist on the same team. If you think they can, you don’t do anything. If you think they can’t, then you have to begin the process of trying to trade Waiters and get equal value in return.

After that determination is made, next up on the to do list is which of your own free agents or contract option players do you keep or trade to free up cap space. The important names on that list are free agents Luol Deng, Spencer Hawes and C.J. Miles and team option players Anderson Varejao, Alonzo Gee and Scottie Hopson.

What you do there, then leads into maybe your biggest decision of all and that is do you go after LeBron James in free agency if he opts out of his contract with the Miami Heat. If he doesn’t opt out, or you decide not to target him, then what is “Plan B” and who will you target with all of your cap space in free agency?  Do you go after Carmelo Anthony? Is Gordon Hayward your small forward of the future? Do you go after a veteran like Pau Gasol or Rudy Gay or Danny Granger?

LeBron and Kyrie shake hands at Z jersey Ceremony 3-8-14

You could also go another route and try and make a blockbuster trade to bring in an impact player like Kevin Love, but would you have to give up to get him?

And on top of all of that, unless a miracle happens, you once again will be picking in the lottery. As of now you would have the ninth most ping pong balls in the hopper. You better hope that Nick Gilbert’s bow-tie has a lot of luck left in it to get a top 3 pick if you want to land a projected franchise type player. If not, then your new front office will have to do a better job than they did last year in selecting the right player in the draft to help your struggling franchise. Even if it’s not a top three pick, you can’t afford to swing and miss like you did with Anthony Bennett.

So I think it’s safe to say that this “IS” the most important off season in Cavaliers franchise history and it falls squarely on the shoulders of owner Dan Gilbert to make all the right decisions to turn it around.


1 – Andrew Wiggins SF 6’8 – 200 – FR – Kansas

2 – Joel Embiid C 7’0 – 250 – FR – Kansas

3 – Jabari Parker SF 6’8 – 241 – FR – Duke

4 – Julius Randle PF 6’9 – 225 – FR – Kentucky

5 – Noah Vonleh PF 6’10 – 240 – FR – Indiana

6 – Aaron Gordon PF 6’8 – 210 – FR – Arizona

7 – Dante Exum SG 6’6 – 188 – 18 years old – Australia

8 – Marcus Smart PG 6’4 – 225 – SPH – Oklahoma St.

9 – Dario Saric SF 6’10 – 223 – 19 years old – Croatia

10 – Tyler Enis PG 6’2 – 180 – FR – Syracuse

11 – Rodney Hood SG 6’8 – 180 – SPH – Duke

12 – Doug McDermott PF 6’10 – 210 – SR – Creighton

(Based on if all players listed enter the NBA Draft)