No one expected Jordan Hamilton or Tristan Thompson back. But Cory Joseph? He was supposed to be a crucial component of the Texas backcourt next season.
Instead, Joseph chose to go pro. His decision to declare for the draft was not shocking but it was a bit surprising that he didn’t pull his name out. Everyone would have understood had Joseph merely tested the NBA waters, gauged scouts’ perspective of him, and discovered what to improve to raise his stock for next year’s draft.
But Joseph isn’t waiting for next year’s draft or sharing the ball or backcourt with Myck Kabongo, the nation’s top high school point guard prospect, and letting his draft stock slip.
It was a tough decision for Joseph, but the Cleveland Cavaliers might make it the right one.
Chad Ford of ESPN is reporting that the Cavs, who have the 32nd and 54th picks, are interested in the Longhorn guard. No. 32 would be quite a reach, but No. 54 would be a more realistic destination for Joseph.
Cleveland’s intentions could change — either the Cavs could get Joseph with a different second-round pick, should they trade their No. 4 pick, or they might not take Joseph at all if they use their No. 1 pick on Duke point guard Kyrie Irving, a move many believe they will make. If Cleveland does indeed select Joseph tonight, he would join former Longhorn Daniel “Boobie” Gibson, the Cavaliers’ 2006 second-round selection.
As for Texas, it’ll be fine without Joseph — Kabongo and J’Covan Brown will fill in nicely. But it remains to be seen if Joseph will be fine without Texas.