The Golden State Warriors will be at the forefront of the NBA offseason. With the team holding the No. 2 pick at the 2020 NBA Draft,
Add to that the non-stop Giannis Antetokounmpo chatter, and the Dubs are the team to watch as they prepare to load up for another run at an NBA title.
There are no big-name free agents available this year, meaning most of the player movement will come via trade. Golden State’s general manager, Bob Myers, will be busy working the phones as he tries to add the right pieces around Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. The Warriors have been linked to several trade proposals, including most recently during a podcast featuring ESPN’s NBA Insiders Brian Windhorst, Tim Bontemps and Kevin Pelton.
The trio discussed if the Dubs can pull off a trade to acquire Bradley Beal from the Washington Wizards. Here is the exchange (h/t NBC Bay Area’s Drew Shiller):
Bontemps: ”There are not a lot of teams that can trade for Beal because you have to have a lot to trade to get a guy like this ... Bradley Beal is a top-15 player in the league. You have to give up value to get a player like that.”
Windhorst: ”So a team that could enter the sweepstakes should (he) become available would be the Golden State Warriors.”
Bontemps: ”The trade there is pretty simple. Andrew Wiggins is involved from a salary standpoint. And then it would be the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, the (Minnesota) Timberwolves pick next year, and then I also included Minnesota’s second-round pick next year — which I anticipate to be a very good selection.”
Windhorst, Bontemps and Pelton acknowledge that the only way this could happen is if Beal approaches Wizards’ management and says he wants out before the 2021 season begins. Washington would want to use the No. 2 selection itself, rather than taking a player Golden State’s brass picked.
The Wizards are apparently set on seeing how the Beal/John Wall pairing looks, with the point guard healthy for the start of the next season. But, Washington has no chance at being a championship contender, so GM Tommy Sheppard might want to start rebuilding the roster with younger players.
Beal is one of the best pure scorers in the NBA. The 27 year old averaged 30.5 points and 6.1 assists while shooting 35.5% from deep last season on a bad Washington team. Beal is due a little more than $28.75 million next season, and then his new two-year extension will kick in, which pays him north of $37 million in 2022-23.
Adding Beal would give Golden State a ton of scoring, but the defense could take a hit. The team needs Thompson to show his pre-injury form on the defensive end, but if he can’t, the expectation is that Wiggins will develop into a high-end wing defender who can guard the opposing team’s best player.
Beal’s 117.6 defensive rating was second-worst on the Wizards, behind only the diminutive Isaiah Thomas. As bad as Washington was last year, the team gave up 10.7 fewer points per 100 possessions when Beal was on the bench.
I love Beal’s offensive game, but the Warriors have enough scoring with Curry and Thompson leading the way. Beal wouldn’t average to close to 30 points per game with the Dubs, but he could be the heir apparent as the Splash Brothers head into the twilight of their careers.
Wiggins can put up between 15 and 20 points per night with Golden State, but his defensive capabilities make him very valuable to the Warriors.
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On to some links:
Myers is hoping one-or-two of the younger players can work their way into the rotation next season, including Jordan Poole. Warriors owner Joe Lacob told Patrick Murray of Forbes that Poole learned a lot from Klay during the Dubs’ mini-camp.
Thompson was among the NBA’s best players before his injury and the hope is that he will be at a similar level in 2021. Surprisingly, some of Golden State’s young players didn’t realize just how good Klay is until seeing him play during camp. (NBC Bay Area)
The big names were missing from mini-camp, but their absence shined a spotlight on the lesser-known players. The Athletic’s Anthony Slater gives his breakdown of the team’s scrimmages.