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Question of the Day: Who will be the top five picks in the NBA draft?

May 18, 2011 |  1:27 pm

Question_275 Writers from around the Tribune Co. discuss the upcoming NBA draft. Check back throughout the day for more responses and feel free to weigh in with a comment of your own.

Lisa Dillman, Los Angeles Times

The latest in a never-ending series of mock drafts … and thinking if Cleveland can cash in on a 2.8% chance of winning the lottery, it might be time to buy a Lotto ticket this weekend.

1. Cleveland -- Kyrie Irving. Another point guard arrives in town. Understudy to Baron Davis and looking like Ramon Sessions better start looking for change of address forms.

2. Minnesota -- Derrick Williams. Power forward moving up fast. Of course, there is the unpredictability of General Manager David Kahn.

3. Utah -- Enes Kanter. Big man feeling the love from experts despite not playing a minute last season at Kentucky. 

4. Cleveland -- Kawhi Leonard. Rebuilding 101 for the Cavaliers. Putting him any lower would risk the wrath of LAT colleague Broderick Turner, a proud San Diego State grad.

5. Toronto -- Brandon Knight.  His Kentucky debut happened to be an exhibition game in Canada against the Windsor Lancers. We're all about symmetry here.

Shannon Ryan, Chicago Tribune

While the NBA draft this year is deemed as a weak one, the early picks are as important as ever. The top two picks will feature the best players before a noticeable dropoff.

The Cavs earned the first and fourth picks of the draft and can take two of the more intriguing players out of college. Expect the Cavs to select Duke’s Kyrie Irving with the first pick. An elite pure point guard is too good to pass up and Irving proved to be crafty with the Blue Devils.

Arizona forward Derrick Williams showed off his athleticism and improved his stock greatly during the NCAA tournament, making him a clear-cut No. 2 pick who will be selected by the Timberwolves. Kentucky’s Brandon Knight has some flaws, but he is the best available guard at No. 3 where the Jazz will take him off the board.

The Cavs will pick perhaps the most interesting player in Enes Kanter, who did not play at Kentucky after being ruled ineligible by the NCAA. The Cavs will hope the 6-foot-11 forward/center fulfills the expectations he entered college with.


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Photo: Kyrie Irving. Credit: Chuck Liddy / Raleigh News & Observer