The Golden State Warriors are one of two NBA teams that hold a pair of lottery picks in next month’s draft.
The Warriors are in a unique position going into the 2021 NBA Draft. The team’s core of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green have a championship pedigree, and with the trio capable of still playing at a high level, general manager Bob Myers is trying to find a way to balance the immediate and future needs of the organization.
Myers doesn’t have much financial wiggle room to improve the roster around the Big 3 in free agency. The Warriors only have the $5.9 midlevel exception to add a veteran, so the two lottery picks hold a ton of significance.
The Warriors could look to package both picks to acquire an established player who will have an immediate impact or select two youngsters to help solidify the team’s identity for the future.
But according to one NBA insider, the Warriors are already exploring trade options. John Hollinger of The Athletic says the Dubs would consider packaging the No. 7 pick along with 2020 second overall pick James Wiseman to add a veteran.
The Warriors now have the seventh and 14th picks plus last year’s second overall pick, James Wiseman, and there is a widespread expectation that the Warriors will use No. 7 and Wiseman, in particular, to seek more immediate upgrades to the roster. One name to watch: Pascal Siakam.
Wiseman averaged 11.5 points and 5.8 rebounds in 21.4 minutes per game. The 20-year-old’s per 36 minutes stats are at 19.3 points and 9.7 rebounds, but he struggled with consistency on both ends of the floor.
The Warriors’ net rating was 11.4 points better per 100 possessions, with Wiseman on the bench. His 110.6 defensive rating is fourth-worst out of any Warrior who has played meaningful minutes, per NBA.com.
The Toronto Raptors got some lottery luck and moved up to No. 4, meaning they will get one of the five highly-touted available prospects. Since beating Golden State in the 2019 NBA Finals, Toronto has lost key pieces Kawhi Leonard, Serge Ibaka, Danny Green and Marc Gasol and is looking to retool its roster.
Siakam averaged 21.4 points, 7.2 rebounds and 4.5 assists in 56 games last season while shooting just 29.7 percent from the 3-point line. The 26-year-old is owed a little more than $105 million over the final three years of his deal, so Myers would have to get creative to acquire the former All-Star.
One player who would fit the financial aspect of the deal is Andrew Wiggins. The Canadian might be enticed with the possibility of playing at home. Wiggins averaged 18.6 points and shot a career-high 38 percent from the 3-point line while providing good two-way value last season. He routinely guarded the opposing teams’ best player and showed he could be a good fit alongside Curry and Green. Wiggins has two years and roughly $95 million left on his contract.
This will be another massive offseason for the Warriors. Thompson will hopefully be back to full health by Christmas, and if he can even be 80 percent of the player he was prior to his devastating injuries, the Dubs will be in good shape to try and get back into contention.
What do you think of Siakam’s potential fit with the Warriors? Do you think he would be a good addition? Or would you prefer Myers explores other options?