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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

They announced the Santa Cruz G League schedule. First game on February 10th against the G-League Ignite team with possible future Warriors Jalen Green and Jonathan Kuminga.

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Kuminga would be a great pick, but I think everybody now has him going top 3 which means the warriors would have almost no shot.

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Someday Jalen Green will face Jalen Brown. Jalen Rose will the commentator.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

Most of the complaining about Wiggins was due to the max contract. Even with his Warriors stats he probably isn't somebody that would obviously deserve the max. If you compare what he has done this year with say, Klay Thompson at age 25, Thompson is better at pretty much everything except blocking shots. Wiggins certainly isn't KD either, but the choice if they didn't end up with Wiggins was nothing while still being over the cap. And the Warriors got a 1st round pick out of it.

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Is this right? 2 protected firsts Iguodala and a center plus getting off of an Evans contract that they didn’t need to be on; for Wiggins a top 3 protected 1st and a 2nd?

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If I remember correctly, we got Wiggins and the 20-21 Top 3 protected 1st & I believe a 2nd round pick that will be in the 30s - probably high 30s. Twolves got DLo, Evans & Spellman. Igoudala to Memphis was a separate deal + we had to give them a 1st round pick to take him. Which created the TPE that was used to get Oubre.

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Looking at Russell as an extended Minn trade: the Warriors had to give up Iguodala and first to Memphis to be able to fit Russell (which they gave up a first to get too.) So Iguodala is essentially part of the extended Russell trade sequence that took place over the course of half a year.

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In the KD/DLo trade, the Warriors gave up a 1-20 protected 2020 1st for Russel that has since turned into a 2025 2nd rounder. So: Russel + 2025 2nd round + Andre + 2024 1-4 protected + Evans + Spellman for Wiggins + 2021 1-3 protected + 2021 2nd rounder.

Net, we're getting earlier picks, which should be better picks. Gave up Andre, and moved from DLo → Wiggins.

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Comparing RPMs last yer

Andre -1.97

Spellman -1.18

Evans -4.87

Russell 1.51

Wiggins -1.19

So far we came out ahead, though maybe we should pair Bowman and Smail who I think largely took up Spellman's and Evans' minutes. We can look at Smail's minutes as development and maybe not count his negaative play. Bowman is negative so this would probably then be a wash.

This year:

Andre -2.04

Russell seems to have not played enough games, but he seems to be at least as good as last year.

Wiggins -.32

Pretty close to a wash, I'm surprised to say, except who is taking what would've been Andre's minutes? I'd say Oubre at a cool -2.86.

Right now, I'd probably rather have Russell. He doesn't fit that well but he just seems to be a much better player.

What we're all banking. If it falls to around #10, I'd imagine an Isaac Okoro/Onyeka Okongwu level player. They're ok.

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Dang, Memphis really twisted that knife to take on Iguodala’s positive asset contract.

Overall the Warriors did pretty good. The Warriors waiting for the ability to trade DLO mist have been like that scary stock market hold where you bought in and the stock instantly tanks so you just have to be patient.

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Warriors were between a rock and a hard place after KD and Iggy departure. Getting DLO and flipping him was an astute move by Meyers & Cie. After all, an asset is an asset, and Wiggins fits what they needed. His contract is another story. Is he worth the money? Maybe not.

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Actually, the stock tanked before you bought it, but you lose the money if you don't spend it so you might as well have this stock they're willing to sell you.

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Yes - all related. I see what you're saying.

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Is it repeatable? JaVale McGee and Marquese Chriss indicate 'yes.' Some of it comes from the right environment and coaching. Some of it comes from the right fit. Some of it seems kind of mysterious. Does it work every time? Of course not. But it's definitely repeatable.

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I hope they don't pull any punches and blow out the Timberwolves tonight. They've got another game tomorrow, and it'll be against the Suns in Phoenix.

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yeah, but it's looking like no Booker for the Suns so hopefully it'll be a little easy. But agreed. Would be awesome to blow the TWolves out and give the main guys an early night tonight

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

> yeah, but it's looking like no Booker for the Suns so hopefully it'll be a little easy.

hush, you.

feels like half the time we play someone without their superstar they blow us out. (I'm sure it's not actually half the time but it feels like it.)

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That Suns game is about to get a big fat asterisk. If the Warriors win, probably the league's real superstars will successfully lobby to have it wiped from Warriors record.

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Pretty sure there have been other notable games where several key players sat out this season... pretty sure philly had to play a game with only 7 non-starters suited up due to covid protocols.

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It was a joke reference to the 2015 championship... where we didn't really win cuz Cavs didn't have Irving & Love available.

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🤪

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Hamstring injury for Booker? Oof. Hope he gets well soon.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

I disagree with the headline. The Wolves wanted Wiggins to be a superstar. The Warriors want Wiggins to be a good player.

That said, I agree with the conclusion about Wiseman. People are excited for Wiseman's defense and shooting ability, and I agree those will make a huge difference. But what the Warriors can impart to him that he might not have gotten anywhere else is passing and hoops IQ. He's 19! He's currently a bad passer with a low hoops IQ. But he gets to see how players like Looney and Dray (who are basically all brain) screen, pass and facilitate. This is like Kareem and Walton going to UCLA and learning that system at 19. It doesn't mean he'll one day be Bill Walton or Jokic, but I expect over time he'll become a very good passing C. And those are hard to come by.

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thanks, I suck at headlines.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

You want better headlines, get corduroy pillows.

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Zing!

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> But he gets to see how players like Looney and Dray (who are basically all brain)

Not your main point at all, but Dray is not at all "basically all brain", he's sneakily athletic and very long. Combine that with his ability to see the Matrix like he does and it's amazing to watch him work on the defensive side especially.

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His length is good. It's not that hard to find a PF with a wingspan 7'1, and that's below average for a C. I think his athleticism for those positions probably topped out at average, and now it's solid below.

Dray's very skilled. He's strong for his size, and has very good feet. (Looney's feet are also his best asset). They're not devoid of tools, but Draymond is one of the smartest players in the history of the game. That and his ferocious competitive spirit are his super powers. He's maximized very mediocre tools.

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> I think his athleticism for those positions probably topped out at average, and now it's solid below.

Yeah, I completely disagree with that. He's a unicorn at C, so it's a weird comparison to make anyway.

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He's not in the league because he's fast or can jump high.

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Athleticism is WAY more than just being fast and jumping high... there's hand eye-coordination, twitch/immediate quickness, size/strength/speed, footwork & balance... Dray is in the league because he's got a unique combination of athleticism and takes advantage of it.

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I noted Dray has great feet and is strong for his size. He has tools. Add them all up and they're average at best.

It's his brain and heart.

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Recced for well-deserved Draymond praise. It is unfortunate more fans who clamor for Dray to be traded don't see what he brings to the table outside of scoring. I haven't checked out the old SBN site for a while mostly due to Vox and their business practices but also because that place has become a cesspool of bad opinions and Dray-hating.

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it's because all the best people came here, which was predictable. I like Brady, but Vox is Vox and GSOM is dead.

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There’s a ton of clamoring there and on Twitter for moves that would turn the team into a perennial loser. I guess nostalgia for the old days is setting in?

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No, just a bunch of overemotional idiots trying to act like pundits and all the morning talk show hosts

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Speaking of the old days: is Wiggins what the Warriors envisioned they would get when they drafted Joe Smith?

The super quick second jump reminds me of Smith for some reason.

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Loon is great, but in his case, it really is mostly brain and height, his athleticism doesn't really jump off the page or anything. I mean, Steph isn't a great athlete either and he's the best player in the NBA today (yeah I said it) so certainly athleticism isn't everything.

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"his athleticism doesn't really jump off the page or anything"

And yet, he stays in front of guards darn well. As I mentioned above, athleticism is about way more than just being fast. Looney slides well and stays on balance well.... If staying balanced and ready for the next maneuver is not "athleticism", I don't know what is.

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Yeah, Looney's lateral movement is hard to believe.

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Silly thought: sometimes I feel he's so slow that he fakes out the offensive player into thinking he didn't fall for his move.

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Which is incredible for a guy who’s had hip surgery.

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Like 17 times

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

Nicely done Duby. Also note the uptick in assist % notwithstanding the decrease in counting stats. I think one other underrated improvement on the Dubs is a slight uptick of shots in the post. Wiggins is long and bouncy but too fast for slow wings. He can be very efficient in the post and we've started using him a bit more there when he has mismatches. That can get him to the line as well, and on balance give his efficiency a big boost. The TS will, to a certain extent, rise and fall on the 3 ball, but finding other avenues for him to produce will be key as well.

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He's also shooting the 3 much better. I'd be interested if he's just reducing bad shots or just making more... Anybody know if he's making higher percentage on wide open/open 3s with enough sample size?

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Just eyeballing since it's a ton of clicking... between 2016-2019 he took anywhere from 15-25% of his shots while wide open/open from 3pt range... hitting at a high of 37-38%.

The difference this year is that wide open/open 3pt shots account for 30% of his total shot selection and he is hitting at 50% for "wide open"... way above his norm. And like you said, sample size... 1 or 2 missed/made shots would change the percentages significantly.

Open: 14/37

Wide Open: 18/36

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So more open shots and hitting them more frequently. Sounds like it's at least an indicator that we can be confident he'll end up at least above 36% for the year, even if his open/wide open hit rate drops back down... but could also keep up at 40% if he's also improved his shot a little bit. That would be a huge development...

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Got lost in the Warriors lineup stats on NBA.com. Never really look at stats. Prefer to watch games.

Wiggins with Wannamaker, Lee, Mulder, & Paschall was way better than the bench with Oubre. Wiggins is an all-round winning player right now.

If the coaches use stats they should only play Paschall at the 5 and some of Paschall’s backups minutes should go to Wiseman. Lee needs to be on the court more and Mulder + Lee should be on the court more with Wiseman and Paschall (separately of course.)

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Woops missed the Looney Paschall Baze Curry Lee lineup that gives them hope Paschall could play the 4.

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5-man lineup which has played 40 mins or more with highest NETRTG in all of NBA this season?

Steph+Oubre+Wiggs+Dray+Loon

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That lineup is pretty good but I also think this shows you 40 mins is a low enough sample size that NETRTG is noisy

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In the whole nba?!? Wow

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That’s why I haven’t been as bought in to the first round out with a whimper ceiling as most. The Warriors have these aces that they’ve just been holding close to the vest.

Oubre has been rough. You can’t play him with Wiseman and he’s not great with the backups. But he is useful as the only headless chicken high energy on ball disruptor with those other 4.

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How can that be possible? I've heard everywhere that Oubre is terrible and should be moved ASAP for Ball or washed up JJ Reddik /facepalm

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Prob have to include Steph to convince NOP to accept that deal, tbh... Steph is having a pretty down year too... <40% 3pt... clearly age is catching up. Sell before it gets obvious, I say.

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Scrub!

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Trade him now!

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

Shows how much of an anchor trying to get Wiseman xp has been

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Against the toughest schedule in the league no less!

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He definitely checks out from the eye test. Let's hope his advanced numbers improve so that we have more concrete evidence that it's not just a mirage.

Though I do think the biggest part of the improvement has just been looking at him from a different frame. Wolves fans (and most of the NBA) were anchored to see him with respect to the expectations of a #1 pick and a max contract. After all we'd heard (and seen his numbers) about Wiggins, we were conditioned to see him as a very negative player who doesn't exhibit effort and chucks up inefficient shot after inefficient shot. So when that didn't happen and Wiggins turned out to be at least competent, we were all delighted as we were judging him with respect to completely different expectations.

As with most things, the truth about Wiggins' true ability is probably in between.

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I don't entirely agree with your point that the perception of Wiggins as a good player has to do mostly with perspective. That's a piece of it, but a lot of it has do with watching him play for a not-insignificant number of years and not being very impressed with what he brought to the table. After the Wiggins/DLo trade, I watched a lot of Wiggins' Timberwolves film on Youtube and it did not leave me very optimistic. He DID chuck up inefficient shot after inefficient shot. He DID have many games where he didn't exhibit a lot of effort, especially on the defensive end. That reputation came from something other than improper expectations and talking to some knowledgeable Minnesota fans about him would be disheartening as they would point to many occasions where he would show promise, only to backslide back into bad habits.

I don't know if it's more on Wiggins' personal evolution as a player (as Duby notes, his improvement in several areas can be charted to before he started his tenure with the Warriors) or on the Warriors system bringing out the best in his game (it's likely a little of both), but he is a noticeably improved player this year. I think that perception based on his large contract and his #1 draft status certainly had an impact on how Wolves fans saw him, but he is on the same contract this year and I have seen more than a couple Wolves fans online lament that they wished they had this version of Andrew during the years he played for them. Likewise, I think if we were seeing the same Wiggins that played for Minny for the first 5 years of his career or so, we would not be as pleased right now.

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I mean, surely as Warriors fans (those who have been around for longer than the last decade) we can relate to seeing players with potential squandered who go somewhere else and flourish? (Or players showing their potential and then being traded for a handful of magic beans).

I greatly prefer not to be in the position to lament that year after year......

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Robert Parish and the draft pick that became Kevin McHale for the draft pick that became Joe Barry Carroll comes to my "experienced" mind

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I can absolutely relate to it and am relishing being the franchise on which players get better rather than a team whose players improve upon going somewhere else. My only point was that Wiggs is actually playing better this year and that is more than just the expectations being lowered for him.

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Truth! He’s playing winning basketball period. I wouldn’t trade him for anyone in the league that’s not already carrying a winning team. Aka Wiggins should be a Warrior for the long haul.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

Great article, D-cube. The main knock we heard about him (or atleast I read) was inconsistency. That is equally (if not more) valuable. May be that part of the improvement aka consistency has been all GSW culture. That wouldn't show up in season stats. Most likely plots of game numbers will show much more glitchy plots in previous seasons than now.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

I think there were very different team expectations. Wolves wanted a #1 gun whereas dubs are very happy with his #2 production and would be ecstatic if Klay were around to complete the three headed scoring monster. As mentioned, Steph is the ultimate opportunity maker if you figure out how to fit the scheme.

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This is right. I disagree with the headline. The Wolves expected a superstar, the Warriors want a complimentary player who can fill some very valuable roles.

I think when Butler came and they were very good that year people point to that and say that he really struggled in a winning system. 1) He was 22 at the time and had only played in a volume role. 2) Jimmy Butler occupies the exact same area of the court as him. That's really hard to figure out in one season, especially with a strong personality like Butler agitating to get out.

Three years later he's a much better ballhandler and passer so the skill development helps. But the main thing is the game is easier. On offense the Warriors don't ask him to do too much, playing off Steph makes it incalculably easier for him, and what he does well he's not really competing with anyone else to do. This will all be even more true next year with Klay.

By making his job so much easier on offense they were able to really up their expectations on defense. Here's the system, here's your job, you just need to do it possession after possession. It's easy to learn, but hard effort. He was ready for it.

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Well said!

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Almost opposite desires right? The Warriors don’t want him to be a volume scorer at all and they want that energy on D instead.

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My biggest criticism of Wiggs at the time of the Dlo trade was what I saw as an indifferent defender, and I'm very happy to be proven wrong on that count. The blocks are awesome to see but it's even more so the effort that Wiggs brings every night on the defensive end that has me excited for the team's potential when fully healthy. He has been solid on guards, wings, and bigs. His feet are quick enough to stay with speedy defenders and his upper body is strong enough to deter big guys trying to bully their way inside. Although his offense has been efficient and his shot selection seems much improved, I'm enjoying watching his defensive game the most.

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It's a big part of what they wanted from him, even before Klay got reinjured. I like the thought of the Ws becoming a top defensive team. Now all they have to do is actually become that...

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

Wiggins is one of the most durable players in the league, too. He missed one game in his first four years at Minnesota and hasn't missed any in his limited time with the Dubs.

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Oh no, this sounds like a jinx.

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Yes... this sounds like Klay all over again. What a turrible signing

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Listening to Wiggins talk about the difference between playing for GS and Minnesota the other day, he made it very clear that the team and organization being organized for everything shapes the culture at GS. He said he got that for 2 years when Thibodeaux was the Twolves coach. Players like to feel comfortable, have a routine, feel like they are part of a whole. Didn't sound like that was the case when he got to Minnesota after being traded for Kevin Love or after Thibs departed.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

The Warriors didn’t sign Wiggins, they traded for him.

I was down on the trade initially because of his history. I didn’t think he would get even marginally better. I was very wrong, as he’s becoming an elite two-way wing. I think he will take another step once Klay returns.

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Can you imagine the space he'll have? Open 3s and room to drive for days...

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And another shooter to kick out to. Assists should go up too. He might not be a leading scorer on a playoff team, but he’s learning to become a well-rounded player, which is extremely valuable. He may justify that big contract.

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Let’s hope Russell plays so we can see the Steph vs Russell duel!

Wiggins seems to be doing great with his role. In admittedly limited viewing: His biggest issue always seemed to be that his instincts when the offense broke down were not very efficient, and the Wolves offense? Broke down quite a bit.

Wiseman has the desire, aggression, and tools to be great. He needs practice time to solidify the knowledge so he can operate successfully at game speed. Small bursts of game time surrounded by coaching and longer run when he’s rolling and in blowouts would be a great way to help him develop this season without creating undue stress that can sabotage a player and a team culture.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

I'm hopeful that the team's approach with Wiseman was to introduce him to the expectations of the starting line up at the beginning of the season to show him the game speed he needs to be ready for, and then focus on training through the middle of the season, and hopefully he's ready by end of the season and playoff push. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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I'm digging his line about watching how Looney plays, and being able to talk to coaching staff about what they're seeing. Seems like a really great way to get Wiseman coached up and mentally ready.

He looks like he belongs well enough, but it makes me forget sometimes how inexperienced this guy is. We haven't had a player that essentially skipped college ball since Monta (i'm just rounding Wiseman's three college games down to zero-ish) - he's got a lot to see and learn

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And what everyone forgets now that Looney plays solid O and D the way he does is that when I used to lurk at GSOM, everyone was more than ready to move on from Looney. The team was too - that's why they didn't sign him to an extension. Then that playoff series with Houston where he was great at guarding Harden happened and all of that chatter disappeared very quickly. And the team couldn't re-sign him fast enough. Every player needs time to play in the NBA. I was kind of shocked that Kerr & co. thought starting Wiseman to begin with was a good thing. You don't always make the right decisions as a coach either.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

To be fair, we can't really say it was wrong to throw him into the starting lineup... Kerr hinted on the first 20 games having growing pains so I don't think they were expecting wins and immediate positive impact from Wiseman. Just going back to DFiB's point, experiencing things in actual game speed and having lots of tape to review and compare with Looney could have been part of the plan. Personally, I know I learn things quicker if I'm just thrown into something, fail (perhaps a few times), and then go do some more formal studying/reading.

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It's also motivating. If he were feasting on backups, he might feel resentful about not starting, like he's being held back. But letting the Lakers and Nuggets teach him a very public lesson helps to put things in perspective when he goes back to the bench and realizes how much easier it is to dominate the bench guys.

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Jan 27, 2021Liked by punk basketball

I agree with this viewpoint. I don't think it was a wrong decision or a bad thing to have Wiseman with the starting lineup at the outset of the season. Kerr wants Wiseman to get experience playing with the starting unit and getting acclimated to playing with Steph, which is very different than playing with anyone on the bench. I think it also helps the rookie to have Draymond out on the floor with him as much as possible so that he can get valuable coaching in game moments without needing to wait for timeouts. I expect Wiseman to be back in the starting lineup again this year for the same reasons.

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He should only return to the starting line up if he has progressed enough to add value to winning. Otherwise you are telling all the vets you’re a bottom feeding mentality who caters to rookies over winning. Winning teams tend to win in the future and losing teams tend to lose. See the Suns, NO Pelicans and Minn who all got transformative talents in the draft vs the Celtics or Miami.

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If he had been coming off the bench like the last game, he would have been playing with Steph and Draymond for most of his 6 minutes along with one of Oubre or Wiggins.

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Interesting, though, was that the Warriors were able to resign Looney to a relatively cheap deal (3 years/$14.5 million) because there were no other teams making him an offer. He's the consummate role player - he knows the system and is always in the right place without needing to pump up his stats. If the NBA had a "screens per offensive possession" stat, I'd imagine he'd be at the top of that list.

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So NBA.com stats: the Warriors went from having the worst starting lineup in the NBA to having the 5th best behind UTA, LAC, PHI, & LAL, just ahead of the Bucks.

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You know what they say about one game sample sizes? (Yes, I know, it's seen limited minutes in previous games)

Don't get me wrong, it's encouraging, but we need to see it against more teams than the lowly Wolves before we celebrate.

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it's just a bruise from an in-game fall that he played through. I still haven't seen any sort of update on him all day though.

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Who said DLO isn’t a team player? Seems like he’s doing everything he can to help his team win.

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Westbrook sitting out for the Wizards, trying to keep pace.

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Have you seen his numbers this year? He looks more washed than Blake Griffin.

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