Sources: Cavs eye Jonas Valanciunas

Updated: June 23, 2011, 6:22 PM ET
By Ric Bucher | ESPN The Magazine

The Cleveland Cavaliers are expected to take Lithuania's Jonas Valanciunas with the No. 4 pick even if Kentucky's Enes Kanter is still available, league sources said Thursday.

Cleveland is still expected to take Duke point guard Kyrie Irving with the No. 1 pick, with Arizona forward Derrick Williams likely to be Minnesota's pick at No. 2.

A source with knowledge of the Cavaliers' thinking told ESPN.com's Andy Katz that Cleveland has informed the Irving and Williams camps that because the team has the No. 4 pick, it will not tip its hand with regard to its No. 1 selection.

The Utah Jazz are deciding between Kentucky guard Brandon Knight and Kanter, with Kanter the choice anticipated by several general managers who hold subsequent lottery picks.

The consensus is that Valanciunas will not be able to escape his existing contract with Lietuvos Rytas until January at the earliest, but that does not scare off the Cavaliers, who sources say compare Valanciunas favorably to the Lakers' Pau Gasol.

If the Jazz select Knight and the Cavs take Valanciunas, Kanter could be taken by Toronto as the fifth pick, but certainly wouldn't get past the Wizards at No. 6.

Kanter attended classes at Kentucky but could not play because he was ruled ineligible by the NCAA after playing professionally in Turkey.

Senior writer Ric Bucher covers the NBA for ESPN The Magazine. Senior writer Andy Katz covers men's college basketball for ESPN.com.

Ric Bucher

NBA Reporter, ESPN The Magazine Senior Writer