(INDEPENDENCE) – The Cleveland Cavaliers selected UNLV power forward Anthony Bennett with the first overall pick of the 2013 NBA Draft on Thursday night.
Bennett, 22, averaged 16.1 ppg in his freshman season at UNLV while grabbing 8.1 rebounds per contest.
The selection of Bennett came as a surprise to many, including national NBA experts who had the Cavs looking strongly at Nerlens Noel, Alex Len, Otto Porter, Victor Oladipo and Ben McLemore.
At 6-8, 240 lbs. Bennett was the first UNLV player to be named Mountain West Freshman of the Year in 13 years. He was a first team All-Mountain West selection in 2013 and led UNLV in scoring a year ago.
Bennett led UNLV in three-point shooting with a percentage of 37.5 percent and was fourth in the Mountain West in blocks.
Bennett was also the first Canadian born player to be drafted No. 1 overall.
The Cavaliers also drafted small forward Sergey Karasev in the first round with the No. 19 overall pick. Karasev, 22, is from Russia and is known for his defensive length and sharp-shooting ability.
Last season in Europe, Karasev averaged 16.1 ppg and owned a 41.9 three-point percentage.
In the second round of the NBA Draft the Cavaliers traded the No. 31 overall pick to Portland and then selected Carrick Felix with the No. 33 overall selection. Felix, a shooting guard, played college hoops at Arizona State.
- Nick Camino