Central Rumors: J. Williams, Cavaliers, Turner, Rubio, LaVine

The Cavaliers view Jalen Williams as a peripheral prospect with the No. 14 pick, but he’ll get a chance to change their minds at a workout Monday, writes Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com. Williams said that session will be his last one before Thursday’s draft and only his third for a lottery team, with the Spurs and Thunder being the others. Williams has reportedly been moving up draft boards and believes his lack of exposure at Santa Clara caused some teams to overlook him.

“Teams haven’t seen me a lot just due to the fact that we were a west coast team playing late at night,” he said. “Just showcasing that I’m a lot bigger than what it looks like on TV and I’m more athletic. Honestly, just playing my game, going in there and competing with other dudes that are doing the same thing as me. Just show a good, positive attitude throughout the whole workout. Everyone here can hoop so try to do the little things to stand out.”

The Cavs might have a greater interest in Williams if they trade down, which is under consideration, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. Scotto hears from league sources that Cleveland would be willing to move backward in this year’s draft in exchange for a future first-round pick.

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • Trade rumors continue to surround Pacers center Myles Turner, but he prefers to stay in Indiana, Scotto notes in the same story. Turner, whose season was ended by a foot injury in mid-January, wants a chance to play alongside Tyrese Haliburton, who wasn’t acquired from the Kings until February. Turner reportedly views Haliburton as the best passing point guard he’s ever had a chance to team up with. He also expects a larger role in the offense now that Domantas Sabonis is in Sacramento.
  • The Cavaliers have interest in bringing back free agent guard Ricky Rubio, Scotto adds. Rubio helped Cleveland get off to a fast start last season before suffering a torn ACL in late December. He was sent to the Pacers in February as part of the Caris LeVert deal.
  • Zach LaVine appears increasingly likely to re-sign with the Bulls shortly after free agency begins, Marc Stein states in his latest column on Substack. Teams that were believed to have interest in pursuing LaVine are being warned that he may not be available, Stein adds.
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