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Cleveland At 19: The Rush Argument





Waiting For Next Year has a rundown  of where the Cavs sit in this draft. It's got a good rundown on popular picks, as well as an analysis of what the common consensus is on their pick. While who's hot for any team will change about a trillion times between now and the Draft,  there are two guys that stand out right now for Cleveland.

Brandon Rush versus Chris Douglas Roberts.

Here's Corndogg's take on why they should take Rush:

With the 19 pick (and barring any trade for someone like Michael Redd), one would assume the Cavs are going to focus on a solid, smart wing player with an array of skills to pair along with Lebron. Fortunately for draft-niks like us, two such guys like that should be around at that time: Chris Douglas-Roberts and Brandon Rush. In a lot of respects, this is a split decision. Both of these kids are smart, strong and have matching skill sets. For my money, I have to put my lot with Rush. Let me explain.
I think Rush has an offensive game that compliments James better. He is terrific with the mid range game, has a good enough outside shot to knock down open 3s and makes good moves off the dribble to open up elbow-extended jumpers. His defensive footwork and savvy are perfect matches for Mike Brown's system. His passing skills are better than most big guards/small forwards in the draft. I think CDR might be a better defender on the whole, but Rush is often smarter and more elaborate with his offensive manuevers. A team already solid on the defensive end could, surprise!, use a player as skilled as Rush. He is a winner, with a high basketball IQ. I think his workman-like demeanor and ability to work in an array of offensive sets will benefit him. Whereas CDR was always running and gunning with Memphis, Rush had to adjust to offensive schemes and styles with the giant roster at Kansas. That chameleon-like versatility will serve him well with the Cavs.

While not as long as CDR, Rush is physical and deceptively quick on defense. He is also bulkier than CDR and will have the same toughness to his game that Mike Brown likes in his players. By all accounts a good locker room guy and one to never get needled by criticism, Rush can focus simply on delivering nightly for the Cavs and should be fine dealing with a superstar like James. His passing skills are great for an off the ball player (although the Cavs are hurting for guys that know what to do with a sharp assist). He and Lebron could both benefit from each other's skill set. I feel that Rush's smarts and savvy will be a great asset to a Cavs team that turns itself inside out about every third week. As much as they need a good defender, they need an even better finisher and offensive weapon. Rush gets my vote on that every time.