CLEVELAND — There was a party at Quicken Loans Arena on Thursday as 6,000 Cavs fans filed into the “Q” to watch the 2012 NBA Draft. Disappointment would be a good way to describe how the party ended.
All eyes were on the JumboTron as Cavs fans waited with anticipation to see what Cleveland would do.
“With the fourth pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers select Dion Waiters from Syracuse,” said David Stern in New York.
“I’m pretty disappointed, I’ll be honest. I wasn’t expecting that even as an option, I would have liked to see Harrison Barnes,” said Neil Miele of Fairview Park.
“I wanted them to get Harrison Barnes, I really did. I’m disappointed,” Roderic Loper of Maple Heights said.
Zach Jones of Fairview Park added, “I wasn’t expecting it, but hopefully he will be a good closer for a lot of our games.”
While fans may have been upset with the pick, those that study film on these players think Waiters was a great choice.
“When you talk about Beal and Waiters, I think they are the same kind of player and I think we will be really, really happy with Waiters’ production,” said Cavs analyst Campy Russell.
“He has size, he is ready to come in and play right now. He knows how to defend, he is a tough kid,” Radio analyst for the Cleveland Cavaliers Jim Chones said.
The fans waited and waited only to find out Cleveland traded the rest of their draft picks for 7-footer Tyler Zeller.
“I thought it was a great trade, you get a lottery-level talent for three back end picks. He could be an instant starter if they move Varejao for a better piece,” said another Cavs fan.
Overall, Cavs fans gave the Cavaliers a passing grade when it came to this year’s draft.
“So far, so good. Any pick can be hit or miss but right now we have to wait and see. So, right now I have to say C+,” chimed another fan.
Quicken Loans Arena was a little more subdued than it was a year ago when the Cavs had the first overall pick. Many fans filed out shortly after Cleveland selected Waiters with the fourth overall pick.