2013 NBA Draft: Could Nerlens Noel Possibly Slip to Phoenix Suns at No. 5?

By Paul Seaver
Mark Zerof-USA Today Sports

Ah yes, it’s draft day and the rumors and uncertainty surrounding this year’s projections are more than bizarre. To put simply, nobody knows what to expect, especially from the Cleveland Cavaliers who hold the top spot.

Many reports indicate that the Cavaliers would like to trade the No. 1 overall pick, but they haven’t been able to find any suitors that are willing to meet their needs. With that being said however, it certainty remains an option.

If Cleveland opts to keep the pick, they are reportedly down to two targets — Alex Len and Nerlens Noel. With all the speculations and uncertainty surrounding this year’s draft, it’s probably wise to keep the name Ben McLemore or possible even a dark horse like Anthony Bennett in the mix, as well — at least until the selection is actually made.

According to a morning report from Yahoo! Sports‘ Adrian Wojnarowski, there’s an interesting fluctuation surrounding Noel’s status and overall projection. Noel, a 6-foot-11 defensive nightmare is recovering form a torn ACL and he isn’t expected to be ready until November or December at the very earliest. However, the Kentucky product has widely been seen as the “favorite” for that top overall spot and while that certainly remains the case, there is the chance that Cleveland goes with Len.

Wojnarowski speculated in his report that if Len is selected at No. 1, Noel could dip as low as No. 5 and what a treat that would be for the Phoenix Suns. This is a very real possibility — we saw Thomas Robinson, who had the potential to be taken No. 1 or No. 2 a year ago, slip to No. 5.

So buckle up draft fans — although it’s unlikely Noel will last until the fifth pick, it’s still a potential scenario.


Follow Paul Seaver on Twitter: @PaulSeaverRS


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