Cavs trade with Mavs, land Zeller
JUN 28, 2012 10:23p ET
That's because the Cavs landed North Carolina 7-footer and ACC Player of the Year Tyler Zeller in a trade with the Dallas Mavericks. In return, the Cavs surrendered their No. 24 pick in the first round, as well as their two second-rounders (Nos. 33 and 34 overall).
Zeller isn't your typical big man, according to most scouts. He is viewed as someone who runs the floor exceptionally well, someone who can absorb contact and finish near the basket. While Zeller doesn't have a prototypical game with his back to the basket, he has received praise for his soft hands and improving low-post play.
Zeller also has the length and athleticism to alter shots in the paint.
"I think he's sort of a Chris Andersen-type," said an opposing general manager, comparing Zeller to the Nuggets' big man. "It was a good acquisition by Cleveland, especially that late in the draft. We had him pegged to go anywhere from 9-12. He's a top-10 talent in most drafts, maybe in this one."
Zeller joins Syracuse shooting guard Dion Waiters as the Cavs' two draft picks. Waiters was selected with the No. 4 overall pick.
On top of being selected conference player of the year, Zeller was named third-team All-American. He also has good basketball bloodlines. His younger brother, Cody, was Big Ten Freshman of the Year at Indiana this past season, and his uncle, Al Eberhard, played for the Pistons (1974-78).
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