Sergey Karasev selected No. 19 by Cavaliers in NBA draft
The Cavaliers selected Sergey Karasev with the No. 19 pick in the NBA draft on Thursday. Here’s a look at Karasev and how he fits with Cleveland:
Bio: Russia | 19 years old | Small Forward
Vitals: 6-7, 197 pounds
2012-13 Statistics: 18.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists for BC Triumph Lyubertsy in Russia’s PBL (per NBA.com)
Strengths: Karasev was productive against solid competition in Russia, where he distinguished himself with his catch-and-shoot skills and quick release on his left-handed jump shot. He backed up that play overseas by impressing scouts when he faced the U.S. junior national select team at the Nike Hoop Summit in April.
Weaknesses: He’s not an explosive athlete or especially quick, creating concerns on the defensive end. While he’s known for his shooting, there’s room for improvement with his off-the-dribble game. If that part of his game doesn’t blossom, defenses will be able to close out hard on his jumper without worry that he will blow by them on the drive.
What Scouts Say: A Western Conference executive said Karasev “is more athletic than you think.” Another executive likened him to Kyle Korver, one of the best three-point shooters in the NBA and a player known for his fast trigger.
Team Fit: The Cavaliers needed a small forward and got one at 19 with the fairly well-regarded Russian. He’s been productive in their solid domestic league and should be able to provide some spot-up shooting, at least, to a Cavs team that suddenly has a lot of perimeter firepower after taking Anthony Bennett at No. 1. Does Karasev or another one of their newer guys (Dion Waiters?) become trade bait at some point to help land a big man?