Why Warriors drafting LaMelo Ball could be beneficial to both parties

Brian Witt
NBC Sports BayArea

The Warriors are going to have a very high NBA lottery pick. This much is certain.

While there is no overwhelming consensus as to which prospect should be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, there are a handful of players believed to be in contention for that selection. The position and type of player a specific team is looking for could ultimately determine who gets their name called first.

One of the prospects believed to be near the top of most teams draft boards is 18-year-old guard LaMelo Ball, the youngest brother of New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball. The younger Ball just returned to the United States after averaging 17.0 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.8 assists over 12 games with the Illawarra Hawks in Australia's NBL. He is a somewhat controversial prospect, and not every team will be the right fit for him. 

Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman recently assessed how Ball would fit with the teams likely to be picking near the top of the lottery, and he believes Ball ending up in Golden State would be beneficial to both parties.

"Ball's potential fit in Golden State became easier to envision after the Warriors swapped D'Angelo Russell for a non-playmaking wing in Andrew Wiggins at the Feb. 6 trade deadline," Wasserman wrote. "And with Stephen Curry turning 32 in March, the team (and Curry) may benefit from an additional ball-handler.

"Arguably the most important benefit for the 18-year-old," Wasserman added, "who's been in the spotlight since early high school and has five-plus million Instagram followers, would be the franchise's professionalism and winning culture."

Ball's maturity often has been questioned -- although that's probably more his father's fault than his own -- but Wasserman believes the Warriors have the right leadership structure in place with Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and coach Steve Kerr to help ease his transition into the NBA. Additionally, he views the worst aspect of Ball's fit in Golden State as potentially being a positive.

"The only negative of his landing in Golden State would be the lack of early shots and touches," Wasserman summarized. "He wouldn't have a path toward dominating the rock and putting up All-Star numbers. But that may also be for the better."

[RELATED: Warriors linked to these two prospects in latest mock drafts]

With what are expected to be high lottery picks in each of the next two drafts, a massive trade exception and a reloaded cupboard of assets, the Warriors are poised to quickly turn things around and get right back into championship contention. It remains to be seen if Ball will have a part in that.

Why Warriors drafting LaMelo Ball could be beneficial to both parties originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

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