Cleveland Cavaliers Rookie Evan Mobley is Flashing His Elite Potential
The Cleveland Cavaliers were happy to just finally land a top three pick after consecutive years of bad luck in the NBA Draft Lottery. But, securing a high pick in this year's draft was exceptional as it created the opportunity to select a game-changing prospect like Evan Mobley -- and for that, they should be ecstatic.
Mobley is the type of player that can completely overhaul a rebuild. He is the cornerstone, the building block that can be trusted to thrust the team out of misery. So far in his first two Summer League games, Mobley has flashed that potential that has everyone so optimistic for the Cavs’ future.
Mobley Summer League Recap
His statistics don’t necessarily jump out at you. He scored just 12 points in his first game and netted 14 points in the next on an underwhelming 11-for-32 (34 percent) shooting total across the two outings. Mobley also recorded 12 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 blocks between both games.
So, what exactly is there to get excited about? It is clear that Mobley has work to do. He desperately needs to gain muscle in order to avoid being knocked off-balance in the post and he’s lacked engagement at times on both ends of the floor.
Nevertheless, Mobley has shown all of the important indicators that lend us to believe he will be an instant impact player for Cleveland. He’s been comfortable on the perimeter, orchestrating offense in the high-post and displaying phenomenal court vision while hitting cutters on their way to the basket.
As a shooter, he has already knocked down quite a few mid-range looks and stepped outside the 3-point line to nail a catch-and-shoot attempt against the Orlando Magic. Mobley is capable of pulling off the dribble or on the face-up in the post. His mechanics are fluid and it is safe to assume he’ll be able to score outside of the paint quickly as a rookie.
This will be important, as his efficiency in the paint has been his biggest issue thus far. He’s been stifled by bigger opponents and can’t really get enough lift on his post-hooks or fadeaways to punish them. Much of this will be resolved once he’s playing next to point guards like Darius Garland and Ricky Rubio who will feed him easy buckets each night (Mobley is great at finding weak points in the defense when he’s off-ball).
Things To Look Forward To: Easy Buckets
It is obvious that the Cavaliers won’t want to give Mobley the Andre Drummond treatment. That is to say -- he shouldn’t be getting the ball in the low-post routinely. He’s better suited in the dunker spot or facing up on the elbow to create looks for others. This is where he is most comfortable and also where his unique skill set is most prevalent.
This is actually one of the most intriguing things about adding Mobley.
Last season, the Cavaliers struggled to generate quality shots outside of their backcourt. This was due to Garland and Collin Sexton being the only playmakers. Now, Mobley will be able to act as a tertiary creator, operating in a way that undersized players like Sexton and Garland are unable to. As a seven-footer who can handle the ball and pass out of the post -- an extremely fun dynamic is going to be created between Mobley and the other starters.
Things To Look Forward To: Defense
Lastly, Mobley is reminding us all of why he was praised as one of the best defensive prospects to enter the NBA Draft since Anthony Davis. He’s lanky, athletic and most importantly, smart. Mobley is a triple-threat defender that will wreak havoc on opponents without getting into foul trouble. We have seen a sneak preview of his agility and natural instincts as a defender throughout his two games in Las Vegas.
The Cavaliers will have to work with Mobley to ensure he truly expands his range and of course, he’ll have to bulk up at some point. Yet, all things considered, Mobley is set to have an electric rookie season due to his already polished playmaking and defensive skills.
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