Dion Waiters never started a game in two years at Syracuse, but that didn’t stop the Cavs from drafting him fourth overall in 2011. He was generally regarded as a top-10 pick prior to the draft despite his status as a reserve for the Orange, so while Cleveland’s decision to draft him at No. 4 was surprising, it wasn’t a shock. The 6’4″ guard started 48 of the 61 games he played for the Cavs last season and quickly established himself as a scoring force, going for 28 points in an upset of the Clippers just a week into his NBA career.
Waiters wound up averaging 14.7 points per game last season, and in spite of his shaky outside shot and defensive shortcomings, it seemed like he and Kyrie Irving would form the backcourt of the future for the Cavs. Now, a month into his second season, he might be on the move. It appears there’s a degree of motivation from both sides for a trade. Waiters reportedly engaged in a heated argument recently with Tristan Thompson and isn’t tight with Irving, while the Cavs have removed him from their starting lineup and appear to be at the very least entertaining offers for their prize from last year’s draft.
Waiters might not be a fit in Cleveland, where his need to play with the ball in his hands conflicts with Irving and fellow guard Jarrett Jack, who’s signed to a long-term deal. Still, he’s just 21 years old, and it’s doubtful that the Cavs could make him the centerpiece of a trade for anyone with quite as much upside.
The Cavs could always find a sweetheart deal from a desperate team, but barring an unexpected offer, perhaps Cleveland is giving up on the recent No. 4 overall pick much too soon. He’s shown improvement this season, raising his three-point accuracy from 31.0% to 38.9%. Of course, if Waiters is a poor fit with his teammates on and off the court, his value might never be higher. So, let us know whether you think the Cavs should take the best offer they can find for Waiters in the near future, or hang on to a player they thought worthy of the fourth overall pick just 17 months ago. Cast your vote, and share more of your thoughts on the issue in the comments.