There is no doubt that this is a huge offseason for the Golden State Warriors. General manager Bob Myers has to make the right decisions to help the Dubs become championship contenders again next year.
One of the positions Myers has to address is the center spot. Golden State can use its 2020 first-round pick on a player like James Wiseman, or Onyeka Okongwu, another option for Myers is to try and acquire a big man with the $17.2 million trade exception.
The Warriors could potentially plug the hole at the 5 spot with a player already on the roster. Marquese Chriss showed a ton of promise during the 2019-20 season. The 23-year-old started 21 games, averaging 9.3 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game, all career highs.
Although Chriss flashed his potential on the offensive end, he will have to grow as a defender. He had the second-worst defensive rating of any Golden State player who suited up in more than 50 games last season. The Dubs were 2.2 points better per 100 possessions with Chriss off the floor than they were with him on it, per NBA.com.
The roster didn’t have much talent, so his underlying numbers should improve just by having better teammates. If Chriss can take another step in his development, it would be a huge win for Golden State. Myers could turn his attention to bolstering the bench by adding a veteran or two via trade or free agency, using the mid-level exception.
Head coach Steve Kerr was happy with how Chriss progressed throughout the season. At 6’9 with a 7’1 wingspan, Chriss has the tools to grow into a better rim protector, something the Dubs will desperately need.
With only the oft-injured Kevon Looney on the roster, Myers could gamble going into the season with Chriss as the solution in the middle. The issue with that would be matching up with the other elite teams in the Western Conference.
The Lakers have Anthony Davis, while the Clippers have a deep rotation up front, so the Warriors would have to hope Chriss would be up to the challenge. If Myers and co. aren’t confident he will be, they could use one of their assets to bring another option to the Bay Area.
Do you think the Dubs should go with Chriss at the starting center spot?
On to some links:
Klay Thompson is one of the best pure shooters in NBA history. One Miami Heat guard says he studies a lot of Thompson’s tape to help him improve his game. (NBC Bay Area)
The Dubs have a hit a few home runs with their second-round selections. Tommy Call III of Warriors Wire revisits the 2001 NBA Draft, when Golden State picked a future All-Star with its second-round pick.
Who are the five best free agent signings in Warriors’ history? Alex Didion of NBC Bay Area shares his list, and we all know who came in at No. 1.
The NBA is considering adding a second bubble in the Chicago for the teams not participating in Orlando. Fansided’s Tony Pesta says it could be a valuable experience for the young Dubs.