Central Notes: Cavs, Ricky Rubio, Bulls, Pacers


  • The Cavs decided to go with Ochai Agbaji over local product Malaki Branham on draft day because they’re looking for immediate help, per Jason Lloyd of The Athletic. Agbaji, 22, played all four years at Kansas and led the Big 12 in scoring — whereas Branham spent just one season at Ohio State.
  • President of basketball operations Koby Altman had chances to land another pick later in the first round, but ultimately decided against adding another guaranteed salary for a rookie, Lloyd reported. The Cavs are aiming to make the playoffs, and therefore, are more focused on adding veterans to their current nucleus.
  • Yes, one of those veterans is free agent point guard Ricky Rubio, as we’ve relayed. The interest is mutual. With everything else being the same, Rubio would give the team 14 guaranteed contracts. He isn’t expected to be available until January, so the Cavs are likely to give another veteran or G League player an opportunity to back up Darius Garland until Rubio is ready.
  • For more on the Cavs’ selection of Agbaji, and Altman’s take on the No. 14 overall pick, check out our full post right here, or visit our Cavs page right here.


While the Bulls already have some nice depth at guard, GM Marc Eversley said they were thrilled to land Arizona’s Dalen Terry with the No. 18 overall pick.

“He’s going to bring versatility on both ends of the floor,” Eversley said, via Julia Poe of the Chicago Tribune. “Last year early on, we had a lot of success when we created turnovers defensively and got out and ran. I think he’s somebody who’s going to be able to do that for us.”

Terry, 19, is 6-foot-7 and averaged 8.0 points and 4.8 rebounds last season as a sophomore. His best performances came late in the season, helping him to reach the decision to remain in the draft.

As Eversley indicated, Terry is expected to make an immediate impact in the area of perimeter defense.


No. 6 overall pick Bennedict Mathurin has already displayed a ton of confidence, raising some eyebrows by calling out no less than LeBron James.

“A lot of people say he’s great,” Mathurin said, via Ben Golliver of the Washington Post. “I want to see how great he is. I don’t think anybody is better than me. He’s going to have to show me he’s better than me.”

Mathurin is 6-6 and a native of Montreal. He has drawn comparisons to one-time electric shooting guard Jason Richardson. Last season at Arizona, Mathurin averaged 17.7 points and 5.6 rebounds in 37 games.

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