Written by Carson Cooks (Twitter/Instagram)
Graphic by : Hoop.Creative
The NBA draft is a night that many men will remember and the Golden State Warriors were lucky enough to score the second pick in the draft. The Warriors had a decision, would they look for their guard of the future or draft a big man. After Minnesota went with Anthony Edwards at number one there were really only three options they had to decide between. Would they go with the basketball phenom of Lamelo Ball, would they go with a 7’1 skilled big man in James Wiseman, or would they take the versatile big man in Onyeka Okongwu. The Golden State Warriors ended up going with James Wiseman out of Memphis, an incredibly skilled big man who has great defensive capabilities, the ability to play in the pick and roll, and the potential to become a solid catch and shoot player in the future. In Wiseman’s three games at Memphis he averaged 19.7 points, 10.7 rebounds, and 3 blocks per game. Although a very small sample size Wiseman has shown the ability to possess the footwork of Joel Embiid and the defensive capability of Anthony Davis. Wiseman has shown the ability to dominate the basketball court even back to his high school days, where he averaged 25.8 points, 14.8 rebounds, and 5.5 blocks per game. Wiseman will be thrown into the fire right away but with Draymond Green alongside him in the front court he will be moulded to be the big man of the future for the Golden State Warriors.
At the moment the Golden State Warriors are in a tough situation, their second best player [Klay Thompson] recently came down with an injury and while they have championship aspirations their window will soon come to a close sooner than we may think. The Warriors held the 48th and 51st pick going into the night and would select at both of their positions in the draft. At 48 most teams are looking for a filler player but the Warriors might have selected the sleeper of the second round in Nico Mannion. Nico Mannion went viral in high school for being a pure baller, that was not your prototypical looking athlete. At 6’3 Mannion has shown the ability to flat out score the ball, with a nice 10 foot floater, a promising jumper, and the ability to pass in the open court the Warriors have possibly found their small point guard for the future. Mannion at Arizona averaged 14 ppg and 5.3 apg while shooting 32.7% from three point range. That 32.7% is not great but Mannion has proven to be a capable shooter from the line and the field. Although not built to be a defender Mannion will be able to provide scoring off the bench for a team who has the ability to make a push for the playoffs. He didn’t shoot the ball as well as he hoped he showed the capability to come in and bring instant offense.
Four year NBA prospects are harder to come by year after year but this year the Warriors found a very fundamentally sound player who is NBA ready. In his four years at Boise State Jessup averaged 40% from the three point line on 6+ attempts per game. Jessup does all the little things that you need from a rookie on a team with playoff aspirations. When asked, Jessup can be the second ball handler off the bench and will be able initiate the offense into the sets the Warriors already have in place. Jessup can also play off the ball from Nico Mannion if necessary, with a 37% three pointer from 23 feet Jessup will be able to shoot the NBA three pointer efficiently from day one. Overall Jessup will be able to provide the Warriors with a skill set that will do anything for you on the court.
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