UNLV Runnnin' Rebels outstanding freshman Anthony Bennett was taken in the first round by the Cleveland Cavaliers with the No. 1 overall pick. This is a huge shock to most since Kentucky's Nerlens Noel has long been expected to be taken No. 1. Most mock drafts had Bennett going anywhere from No. 3 to No. 7. Bennett is the second UNLV player to go No. 1 overall, the other is Larry Johnson back in 1991.
There has been some concern with Bennett since he added 21 pounds while recovering for shoulder surgery, and to some feel he is injury prone.
Bennett had a great year in his only season at UNLV where he led the team in scoring with 16.1 points and also in rebounds at 8.1 per game. Heading to Cleveland, Bennett will team up with Kyrie Irving which could be a pretty good duo going forward.
So, how will Bennett fit in with Cleveland, well here is how:
Bennett is an intriguing addition to the Cavaliers. Could the Cavaliers eventually run a small lineup with a frontcourt featuring Tristan Thompson and Bennett? While Kyrie Irving is the Cavaliers primary playmaker and scorer, Bennet's diverse offensive skill-set could ease the pressure on Irving and give Cleveland another player who can create his own shot. Bennett could also be a solid pick-and-roll partner with Irving considering his ability to pop for jump shots or roll, using his strength to draw fouls at the basket.
Here is some information from Bennett's NBA Draft profile:
What parts of the prospect's game do you think need more attention?
Because of his size, one of the concerns about Bennett's game has been ability to get back on the ball. The transition game has never been the strongest, but like any draft prospect we present to you here, these aspects are all treatable. Some might chide Bennett for his lack of overall "will" to play more aggressively on defense; and one hopes he didn't view UNLV as a simple "stepping stone" to the NBA and held back anything on the court.
What will fans of the NBA love and/or hate about this prospect?
If your team is in need of a post player who can score with the dunk or tip-in, you want a guy like Bennett. If your team is in need of a perimeter guy who can drain threes, you want a guy like Bennett. If your team is in need of a physical presence that can block shots with his length and grab his share of defensive rebounds, you want a guy like Bennett.