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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Thursday / March 23.
  • Cavs Earn No. 1 Pick & Right to Kyrie Irving

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    Nearly a year after losing LeBron James to “The Decision,” the Cleveland Cavaliers got a major boost Tuesday night when they won the No. 1 pick in the June 23 NBA Draft.

    The Cavs will likely choose between Duke freshman point guard Kyrie Irving and Arizona sophomore forward Derrick Williams.

    “I have no idea where I’m going to end up at but where ever I go I will be grateful for the opportunity to play in the NBA!” Tweeted Irving, the West Orange, N.J. native who spent one injury-plagued season at Duke.

    Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.com has Irving going No. 1 to the Cavs, Williams No. 2 to the Minnesota Timberwolves and UConn star Kemba Walker of The Bronx landing with the Utah Jazz at No. 3.

    “I expect Cleveland to pick Kyrie Irving because they need a point guard,” Minnesota president David Kahn told Givony.

    Irving averaged 17.5 points, 4.3 assists and 3.4 rebounds on the season. He played the first eight games of the year before injuring his right toe in a win over Butler at the Izod Center.


    He returned in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against Hampton and later scored 28 points in a loss to Williams and Arizona in the Sweet 16.

    Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said Monday that whoever selects Irving will be getting an impact player.

    “It’s too bad he was hurt this year,” Coach K told SNY.tv. “People will see just how gifted a player he is and what a great kid.”

    The Cavs already had their own pick and acquired another at the trade deadline from the Clippers in the Baron Davis deal.

    The now own the No. 1 and 4 picks.

    Gilbert sent his son, 14-year-old Nick Gilbert, to the podium and Nick came up with a stunning victory, as the Clippers’ pick, originally No. 8, had only a 2.8 percent chance of landing at the top.

    Nick Gilbert was born with neurofibromatosis, a nerve disorder that causes tumors to grow anywhere in the body at any time. He was wearing black-rimmed glasses and a bow tie and looked serious until he showed a keen sense of humor in a television interview. His father called him his hero.

    Irving was at the draft lottery and helped Gilbert celebrate the pick.

    HERE’S THE COMPLETE DRAFT ORDER:

    1.         Cleveland (From LA Clippers)
    2.         Minnesota
    3.         Utah (From New Jersey)
    4.         Cleveland
    5.         Toronto
    6.         Washington
    7.         Sacramento
    8.         Detroit
    9.         Charlotte
    10.        Milwaukee
    11.        Golden State
    12.        Utah
    13.        Phoenix
    14.        Houston

    Following is the order for the remainder of the 2011 NBA Draft:

    15.        Indiana
    16.        Philadelphia
    17.        New York
    18.        Washington (From Atlanta)
    19.        Charlotte (From New Orleans via Portland)
    20.        Minnesota (From Memphis via Utah)
    21.        Portland
    22.        Denver
    23.        Houston (From Orlando via Phoenix)
    24.        Oklahoma City
    25.        Boston
    26.        Dallas
    27.        New Jersey (from LA Lakers)
    28.        Chicago (From Miami via Toronto)
    29.        San Antonio
    30.        Chicago

    2011 SECOND ROUND DRAFT CHOICE ORDER

    31.        Miami (From Minnesota)
    32.        Cleveland
    33.        Detroit (From Toronto)
    34.        Washington
    35.        Sacramento
    36.        New Jersey
    37.        LA Clippers (From Detroit)
    38.        Houston (From LA Clippers)
    39.        Charlotte
    40.        Milwaukee
    41.        LA Lakers (From Golden State via New Jersey)
    42.        Indiana
    43.        Chicago (From Utah)
    44.        Golden State (From Phoenix via Chicago)
    45.        New Orleans (From Philadelphia)
    46.        LA Lakers (From New York)
    47.        LA Clippers (From Houston)
    48.        Atlanta
    49.        Memphis
    50.        Philadelphia (From New Orleans)
    51.        Portland (1)
    52.        Denver (2)
    53.        Orlando
    54.        Cleveland (From Oklahoma City via Miami)
    55.        Boston
    56.        LA Lakers
    57.        Dallas
    58.        LA Lakers (From Miami)
    59.        San Antonio
    60.        Sacramento (From Chicago via Milwaukee)

    # # #

    (1) –  This pick may be conveyed to Detroit via Denver.
    (2) –  This pick may be conveyed to Portland or to Detroit.

    (The AP contributed; Video courtesy DraftExpress.com)

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    Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

    • Derrick Williams or KI ?

      Foot injury which has healed.

      Or a Broken pinky for which he still averaged 20pt/game.

      Derrick Williams and Knight…good pair.

    • I for one thought Irving is overrated. I dont sense the same feeling I had about Rose a couple years ago.

      I say Williams at #1 and hopefully Kemba at #4.

      I honestly believe Kemba is a better PG then Irving.