|The key is to keep these three guys healthy and on the floor.|
Another franchise in turmoil, as evident by this Bill Simmons article, the Warriors want to bring some life to their team that they haven't seen since the Baron Davis "We Believe" days. They made a questionable trade at the deadline, getting rid of Monta Ellis and obtaining often injured center Andrew Bogut. If Bogut can stay healthy, they may up winning this trade. But that's a big if. Let's take a look at what we've go to work with.
The only player Golden St. will lose to free agency that is somewhat significant is Brandon Rush. Rush is a solid swingman, but one the Warriors could do without during their rebuilding process. Now, onto the returning guys.
The Warriors really don't have a bad team, and it's led by Stephen Curry at the point. Curry is a dynamic scorer that can fill it up at any time, but has battled some health issues. Golden St. has a solid backup for him in Nate Robinson and a talented third guard in youngster Charles Jenkins. That position is set. At shooting guard, the 6'7" Klay Thompson showed in the second half of last season why he was a lottery pick. The former Washington St. guard is a player that this team will build around. The backcourt looks to be a strength.
Small forward is a big need for this squad. Dorell Wright is a one hit wonder, and there's no one after that. Look for the Warriors to keep that in mind early. David Lee is a very capable power forward and a leader of this team. Bogut at center pairs with him to make a very formidable duo down low when healthy. That is the key. While Golden St. may want to get insurance in the draft for Lee and, more importantly Bogut, they did pick Jeremy Tyler and Keith Benson in last year's draft, so they may not venture to that situation until a later round.
With SF being the top need and depth on the wing and down low also important, the Warriors must use their picks wisely. Their choices sit at #7, #30, #35, and #52. Time to hypothesize.
|Barnes seems like the perfect fit for Golden St.|
Barnes is a special talent. His jump shot is incredibly deadly and he is a very gifted athlete. Although he is raw, Barnes can develop into an All-Star. His handles need work and he lacks a killer instinct, but he is the best player for the Warriors to draft right now. This pick pairs Barnes, a solid scorer and defender, next to Thompson and Curry to form an incredibly talented young trio.
As we stroll down to pick #30, the Warriors will be looking for depth. Fab Melo or Festus Ezeli would both be solid picks as defensive minded centers to be insurance for Bogut. While it's doubtful that Melo will still be left, Ezeli could be.
I like Kevin Jones at this pick. The power forward from West Virginia is very physical, has a nose for rebounding, and can stretch the floor. His versatility would be greatly appreciated in the Lee-Bogut tandem, and he can make it in the the NBA despite his size (6'7").
Not too much later, Golden St. will pick again at #35. Insurance for Bogut, a wing defender, and a combo guard if they think Nate Robinson is no longer in the team's plans are all desires. If they choose the third option, Tony Wroten from Washington is the pick. Wroten is similar to Robinson in the fact that he has impressive scoring ability for such a small player. However, Wroten is bigger, younger, and has better court vision.
The Warriors can probably pass on a center until later in the draft because taking one of the remaining bigs this high would be too much of a reach. If they want to go after that wing defender, and I believe they will, Jared Cunningham from Oregon St. is their best bet. I did just mention Cunningham going to Portland in my last article, but Golden St. would be wise to scoop him up before he falls to them. He is a good enough scorer but an excellent defender and someone who would be a well-equipped backup for both Thompson and Barnes.
|You can never have too much insurance for Andrew Bogut.|
In summation, Golden St. should target Harrison Barnes, Kevin Jones, Jared Cunningham, and Henry Sims with their four picks. This would make their starters consist of Curry, Thompson, Barnes, Lee, and Bogut, while the second unit would be Robinson, Jenkins, Cunningham, Jones, and the three baby bigs, Benson, Tyler, and Sims. Those are some talented players and some who could really develop into key pieces for the Warriors' future. If they can make out with a draft similar to this, they should be proud of themselves.
My next article will analyze the picks of the Toronto Raptors, who, although were competitive last season, desperately need more talent.