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Should the Warriors draft or trade?

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The Warriors have a lot of options with the second overall pick.

National Basketball Association’s Executive of the Year Bob Myers, left, and Defensive Player of the Year Draymond Green share a laugh after an awards press conference at Myers’ alma mater, Monte Vista High School, in Danville, Calif., on Tuesday, June 28 Photo by MediaNews Group/Bay Area News via Getty Images

By now you know what happened on Thursday: The Golden State Warriors finished as runners-up in the draft lottery, giving the team the number two overall pick in the upcoming 2020 NBA Draft.

That’s not a bad place to be in for any team, let alone for a team that already has a championship core that figures to be healthy for next season. And even though the 2020 draft is very weak, there’s no consensus top pick, which means the second pick is nearly as valuable as the first.

The Warriors will certainly have their options available with only one player off the board — and with a handful of teams that would be interested in acquiring their pick. The way I see it, they have three basic options.

Option 1: Use their pick

The simplest route would be to simply use their second overall pick on the player they think would help the most. There’s question to who that is, and there’s question as to what philosophy is best suited for a contending team.

Wes Goldberg of the Mercury News reports that, contrary to how many good teams draft, the Warriors would likely select the best possible player, rather than the ready-to-contribute safe pick, or even a player to fill a positional hole.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the Warriors are hoping Anthony Edwards falls to them, but who knows what their draft board looks like.

Option 2: Trade down

There’s no consensus number one pick in this draft, and there’s also no consensus top tier or second tier. Some players, like James Wiseman (someone Goldberg reports the Warriors are not high on, which I’m thankful for) have been the top pick on some mock drafts, and outside of the top 10 on others.

If the Warriors don’t see a big difference between the players they expect to go top three and the players they expect to go in the middle or back of the lottery, they could swap picks with another lottery team, while picking up some small assets along the way.

Option 3: Trade out for a role player

The Warriors have plenty of young, unproven players on the roster already. If the right offer comes around, they could trade out of the draft entirely, and get back a role player who could help them immediately.

It might not help in the long-term, but trading the second overall pick for a sixth man who could play 25 minutes a night could be the difference between winning a title and falling short.


Of course, there’s a fourth option out there, and it gets talked about more than any other: Trading out for a superstar. The Warriors have been linked (on Twitter and in hot takes, at any rate), to Giannis Antetokounmpo, Ben Simmons, and Joel Embiid, and occasionally some other All-Stars.

I think it’s safe to say that if any of those players could be had for a package of the second pick and Andrew Wiggins, the Warriors would jump on it and triple-check the calendar to make sure it’s not April 1.

But I just don’t see that being a realistic option. I sure hope I’m wrong though.

Poll

What would you like the Warriors to do with the #2 pick?

This poll is closed

  • 52%
    Draft the player with the highest ceiling
    (344 votes)
  • 4%
    Draft the safest player
    (31 votes)
  • 27%
    Trade down in the lottery
    (178 votes)
  • 15%
    Trade out for a veteran role player
    (105 votes)
658 votes total Vote Now