Tale of the Tape: Parker vs. Wiggins

The NBA Draft is Thursday night, and for the second year in a row the Cleveland Cavaliers have the top overall pick. Joel Embiid was the likely number one pick, but a foot injury has dropped his stock. Now it looks like the Cavs have the choice narrowed down to two candidates: Duke’s Jabari Parker and Embiid’s teammate at Kansas, Andrew Wiggins. Both are small forwards, making the choice that much more difficult.

Jabari Parker
Andrew Wiggins
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/ Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/ Getty Images
Parker stands at 6-foot-9 with a 7-foot wingspan. But reports say his weight has ballooned to 254 lbs., about 15-20 more than his listed weight at Duke.
Winner At 6-foot-8 with a 7-foot wingspan, Wiggins is nearly identical to Parker in height. But at 197 lbs., Wiggins has no questions about his fitness/athleticism.
Scouting Report
Winner Has unreal offensive talent. Has the size to work on the block, while the handles of a guard. Can score from anywhere, but has occasionally poor shot selection. A liability on defense, but he is still NBA-ready.
Has crazy athleticism. Offensively he can explode to the rim, but he’s passive and inconsistent at best. Questions on if he has the “killer instinct.” Defense is pretty good for an offense-first player.
College Stats
Winner Stormed onto the scene, averaging 23.6 points and 8.7 rebounds on 60% shooting his first seven games at Duke. On the year shot 47%, while adding a block per game on defense.
Averaged 17.1 points (on 45% shooting + 34% on 3s) and 5.9 rebounds a game.
Pre-Draft Workout
Multiple reports claim Parker tanked last week’s workout with Cleveland because he prefers Milwaukee (who holds the #2 pick). Tanking or not, he looked winded and did not shoot well.
Winner The Cavs’ front office was impressed with what they saw from Wiggins last week. His shooting was improved and he passed every test.
Better Fit
Parker has the makings of a player who needs the ball. Will Kyrie Irving give up those touches? Cavs also need defensive help, which he will not provide. If they need him to be a true small forward, could face problems.
Winner Will not need to be a key cog on offense in Year One. Parker may be a better player next season, but down the line Wiggins could thrive if he’s used properly. More of a true small forward, he can play pressure defense and get out in transition.

The Winner Is

Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/ Getty Images
Winner Andrew Wiggins
3 out of 5

Final Verdict: Andrew Wiggins (3 of 5) The Cavs can’t really go wrong with either player. But given the team’s future – with the dynamic Kyrie Irving, pursuing LeBron James and a need for defense – going with Wiggins seems the safest choice at number one.


  1. OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 20:  Matt Schaub #8 of the Baltimore Ravens takes practice throws during pregame against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on September 20, 2015 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) Johnny Manziel (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
    Week 12 Tale Of The Tape: Baltimore Ravens At Cleveland Browns

    The Ravens have been enduring a most difficult season, and circumstances got even harder last Sunday in the win over the Rams when Joe Flacco’s season came to an end late in the game with an ACL tear.

  2. FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 8:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates a touchdown by LeGarrette Blount #29 in the first half against the Washington Redskins at Gillette Stadium on November 8, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 15:  Quarterback Brock Osweiler #17 of the Denver Broncos looks on from the bench Kansas City Chiefs at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on November 15, 2015 in Denver, Colorado. The Chiefs defeated the Broncos 29-13.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
    Week 12 Tale Of The Tape: New England Patriots At Denver Broncos

    Tom Brady has had MVP-type numbers and consistently excellent production through the first 10 games of the season.

  3. Ben Roethlisberger Russell Wilson (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
    Week 12 Tale Of The Tape: Pittsburgh Steelers At Seattle Seahawks

    Ben Roethlisberger appears to be indomitable at the quarterback position, and he is the key to the Steelers’ season.

See All Tales of the Tape
Set Your Picks For Pro Football Challenge
Get The All New CBS Local App

Listen Live