The Golden State Warriors landed a top pick but the sweet spot in this NBA Draft might be later in the lottery.
A few months ago, the Golden State Warriors were thrilled to land the No. 2 overall pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. I mean, not as thrilled as they would have been if this class was a little stronger – but excited nonetheless.
This pick allows the Warriors nearly full freedom to select the prospect they think fits best with the team. However, there is an immense pressure to choose a gifted player with high-risk, high-reward potential this early in the draft. In reality, the Warriors need the opposite.
Most lottery teams are desperate for any prospect with star potential. As for the Warriors, they simply need someone who can step in and contribute to a title run immediately. This places the Dubs’ sweet spot further back in the draft order.
Chris Vernon and Kevin O’Connor recently noted how the back end of the lottery tends to be a goldmine for future talent. Take a look at some players who have been drafted late in the lottery in the last 10 years:
- (2019) Tyler Herro – 13th
- (2018) Michael Porter Jr. – 14th
- (2018) Shai Gilgeous-Alexander – 11th
- (2017) Bam Adebayo – 14th
- (2017) Donovan Mitchell – 13th
- (2015) Devin Booker – 13th
- (2014) Zach Lavine – 13th
- (2013) Giannis Antetokounmpo – 15th
- (2011) Kawhi Leonard – 15th
- (2011) Klay Thompson – 11th
In just about every draft dating back to 2011, there has been at least one-star player to be taken in the 11-15 range. This interesting trend is something the Warriors should consider when surveying their options to trade back in the draft.
One possibility for this occurrence is that the teams selecting later in the lottery are usually more competitive, to begin with. Franchises with great player development like the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs are more likely to turn a prospect into a star.
The Warriors would potentially have some talent to work with if they traded out of the top 10. Names such as Devin Vassell, R.J. Hampton and Oneyka Okongwu could become key players if they fall deep enough for the Warriors to select this late in the lottery.
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Whatever the Dubs decide to do, there is no denying that there seems to be a surplus of quality prospects who fall to the back of the lottery each year.