The Cleveland Cavaliers selected Duke point guard Kyrie Irving with the top overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. Irving joined the Cavs after spending just one season with the Blue Devils. Cleveland, which had acquired the pick in a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers earlier in the season, was looking to rebuild after the departure of star LeBron James following the 2010 season. Irving would go on to win Rookie of the Year honors for the 2011-12 NBA season.
Irving was one selected with one of the two top-five picks the Cavs held in the 2011 NBA Draft.
Top Ten Picks in the 2011 NBA Draft
With the second overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, the Minnesota Timberwolves selected Arizona forward Derrick Williams. At number three, the Utah Jazz picked Kentucky center Enes Kanter. The Cavs were on the board again at number four and selected Texas forward Tristan Thompson. The Toronto Raptors rounded out the top five by selecting Lithuanian center Jonas Valanciunas.
The top 10 picks in the 2011 NBA Draft included:
- Washington Wizards – Jan Vesely (PF, Czech Republic)
- Sacramento Kings – Bismack Biyombo (PF, DR Congo)
- Detroit Pistons – Brandon Knight (PG, Kentucky)
- Charlotte Bobcats – Kemba Walker (PG, UConn)
- Milwaukee Bucks – Jimmer Fredette (PG, BYU)
Meanwhile, twins Markieff and Marcus Morris were selected with back-to-back picks in the first round. Markieff was selected 13th overall by the Phoenix Suns, while Marcus went 14th to the Houston Rockets. The Chicago Bulls wrapped up the first round by picking Marquette forward Jimmy Butler.
2011 NBA Draft Notes
No one from the 2011 NBA Draft class was named to the All-Star Game during their rookie season. Irving, Knight, Klay Thompson, Kenneth Faried, Ricky Rubio, Iman Shumpert and Kawhi Leonard were named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team.
The final pick of the 2011 NBA Draft was guard Isaiah Thomas, who was selected 60th overall by the Sacramento Kings.
Download: 2011 NBA Draft