The bright spot that automatically comes with a losing record is that you will have the opportunity to select a topnotch prospect in the draft. The Golden State Warriors, who finished their 2019-20 campaign with a lowly 15-50 win-loss slate, got just that as they were given the 2nd overall pick during the recently-concluded 2020 NBA Draft Lottery.
While this draft class does not boast an uber-elite prospect like Zion Williamson, it does have a bevy of positionless, versatile players who are deemed valuable in this age’s pace-and-space basketball. Scouts and experts expect Georgia’s Anthony Edwards to be the top selection, which will be made by the Minnesota Timberwolves. LaMelo Ball is a close second, and names like James Wiseman, Obi Toppin, Deni Avdija, and Tyrese Haliburton follow behind.
But with the Warriors core already in their thirties, it’s safe to say that their timeline will take on a win-now approach. It’s not impossible that they will hold on to their draft pick, but it’s more realistic that the Dubs will try to trade it for a more proven star. Here are some potential names that the Warriors front office will try to trade for with their second overall pick in the offseason.
Adding a big man
Nikola Vucevic may not be the rim-running, athletic big man that could perfectly complement the Warriors’ uptempo pace, but his long-range marksmanship will be instrumental for the team. He can score the ball in the post and has the court smarts and vision to make the right plays and find open teammates.
He may not be the best rim protector out there, but the Warriors can always rely on Draymond Green to do the dirty work in the paint. Vooch can do the things that Andrew Bogut did for the Warriors on offense. He can set hard screens and do hand-offs with Steph and Klay. But Vucevic’s ability to spot up for wide-open triples, which he would be constantly getting with the Splash brothers as his teammates, will make the Warriors’ offense even deadlier.
Another perimeter threat
Knowing this Warriors organization, they will not hold back in pursuing another superstar to add to their growing collection. Bradley Beal has been wasting his prime years playing for a losing team with a shallow supporting cast, and it’s time that he and the Washington Wizards finally part ways.
It remains to be seen how the Warriors will entice the Wizards to let go of Beal, but they will definitely start with Andrew Wiggins plus the second overall pick, which could either be Edwards or Ball. Assuming that the Wolves select Edwards, the Wizards will be getting a multi-faceted young gun in LaMelo, who should be the face of their rebuilding franchise.
For the Warriors, targeting Beal is a no-brainer. The two-time All-Star shooting guard is norming career-highs of 30.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 6.1 assists this season, and it feels like he still has tons of room to improve. He has also grown into an intelligent passer, a necessary attribute of any player putting on a Warriors uniform. Aside from his superb prowess on offense, Beal is no slouch on the defensive end either.