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At least five member of the Cavaliers’ front office attended a private pre-draft workout for Vanderbilt point guard Darius Garland in Los Angeles over the weekend, according to Terry Pluto of Cleveland.com.
The Los Angeles Lakers were also there, Pluto noted — though the workout took place before the Lakers traded the fourth overall pick in the Anthony Davis deal with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Cavs own the fifth overall pick.
The workout was staged by Klutch Sports, the same agency that represents Davis, Lakers star LeBron James and Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson, among others.
Garland is 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds and appeared in just a handful of games as a freshman last season. He suffered a meniscus tear in his knee vs. Kent State. The injury is considered minor. Still, there has been some speculation that if the Cavs draft Garland, it could be as a trade asset for teams looking to move up.
Both the Phoenix Suns (drafting sixth overall) and Chicago Bulls (seventh) are said to be exploring trading up to select Garland.
According to Pluto, if the Cavs are open to drafting Garland it’s because new coach John Beilein is open to a smaller backcourt of Garland and second-year man Collin Sexton, last year’s lottery pick.
Garland’s strength is perimeter shooting. He does not yet have what scouts would consider an NBA body.
“Like most freshman college guards, defense is a rumor and a problem with him,” Pluto wrote. “He also needs to develop some strength driving to the rim.”
The Cavs also own the No. 26 pick in the first round. They are believed to be exploring a way to move up to fourth overall. The draft is Thursday.