Now that the Warriors are holding the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, the last thing the franchise needs is for anyone in the front office or the power brokers in the locker room to fall in love with the upside of a 19-year-old.
There are at least two reasons why it's wiser to move it to a franchise in need of buzz. One reason is that No. 2 picks have an astonishingly high disappointment rate; only one of the last 25 is a lock for the Hall of Fame, that being Kevin Durant in 2007.
There is no KD in this draft. Not even the spurious notion of "the next Kevin Durant."
The other reason to deal the pick is specific to the Warriors. They'd much rather have the right 29-year-old. Or the right 34-year-old. Even if it means parting with an intriguing teenager.
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The Warriors know this, of course, and they also know such an admission is a foolish approach to negotiations of legitimate magnitude. That pick could be used for an impact veteran.
"I know there's a lot of narrative around us trading our pick and what we're going to do with it," president/general manager Bob Myers said Thursday night. "But we don't really know anything. At this point, we found out half an hour ago we had the No. 2 pick. So that's the first step as far as getting some clarity. And now it'll be, ‘Do we like somebody there?'"
That's the way to play it, Bob. Explore all options. Take every opportunity to put forth an earnest face while expressing interest in drafting someone who might be a starter in s couple years.
Meanwhile, there are games to win now, rings to chase now and at least three players marching to that beat.
Steph Curry didn't represent the Warriors at the virtual lottery ceremony because he's looking forward to setting a good example for the youngsters. He wants to come back next season, whenever that is, demoralize defenses and make the kind of playoff run most think is beyond the Warriors.
Draymond Green and Klay Thompson aren't ready to rebuild, either. Draymond was miserable last season, quickly recognizing any shock-the-world aspiration perished when Curry went down in their fourth game and would miss at least three months. Klay was rehabbing his surgically repaired ACL, and realized he was best served by keeping his focus narrowed to that.
Curry, 32, has two more seasons remaining on his contract, and one more generous contract in his career. That translates to two or three realistic chances to reach the top. With his pride and determination, he might think four or five more opportunities.
After missing the postseason for the first time in his career, Green, 30, will enter next season aching to prove he's still an All-Star and worthy of the $100 million he will be paid over the next four seasons. Motivated Draymond does not mind tutoring the kiddies, but it had better come with the perk of being on the team nobody wants to see in the playoffs.
Thompson, 30, may seem as if he might be satisfied with making shots and getting stops, in that order, but he surely wants a purpose behind all that two-way labor. He was among the first to utter the word "dynasty" in association with the Warriors. He longs for history to tell an extraordinary tale.
There is no knowing how funny the money will be in the NBA, but commissioner Adam Silver is placing a priority on the safe return of fans. With most teams -- Warriors included -- having an increasing thirst for that increased revenue, the next NBA schedule will be dictated in part by the ability to generate attendance.
The ambition of Warriors CEO Joe Lacob barely fits in his head. It didn't take long for him to realize winning is quite the intoxicant, and after three championships he's willing to spend or overspend in pursuit of enjoying more of that buzz. He'll have at his disposal a trade exception worth $17.2 million and a taxpayer midlevel exception at just under $6 million.
Look, NBA excellence is incredibly difficult to sustain. The San Antonio Spurs did it longer than any franchise but their ratio of postseasons that ended before June is much higher than that of the Warriors. San Antonio's 22-year postseason streak, which ended this month, yielded five titles.
Golden State would like to reach five in less than half the time.
That means making the most of now. It means trying to bring to Chase Center at least some of the mystique of Oracle Arena. It means, above all, examining quality veterans more closely than the youngsters that would come with that No. 2 pick.
Warriors can get instant bounce-back to top by trading No. 2 pick originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area