Former top-10 pick named as possible trade candidate for Warriors
The revamped Golden State front office is in for a busy offseason that could bring several changes to the roster, perhaps as early as the NBA Draft.
According to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, the Warriors are exploring the possibility of trading one of their young pieces to acquire a high pick in next week’s draft. Givony notes that the potential young talent in question may be 20-year-old forward Jonathan Kuminga, the seventh overall pick in 2021.
The Warriors are set to pick 19th in the draft, and if they want to acquire a top selection, they’ll surely have to package Kuminga with their first-rounder. It’s clear Golden State would like to maximize the team’s ceiling while Stephen Curry is still in his prime, but trading Kuminga may not be in their best interest.
Despite being impactful on both ends of the floor last season, Kuminga fell out of favor in HC Steve Kerr’s rotation by the time the playoffs rolled around. Kuminga averaged 6.1 minutes per game in the postseason, compared to 20.8 minutes during the regular season.
Although Kuminga should be a desirable asset in a potential trade, the lack of playing time might diminish his value. Even if the 19th pick is attached to him in a deal, there’s no guarantee that the Warriors will net a top-10 pick in return.
And if that’s the case, is there a prospect in that range who can truly take the Warriors to a higher level than Kuminga?
If the Warriors are interested in making a significant move to remain a championship contender, it’d be intriguing to see whether they contemplate trading Jordan Poole for an established veteran. While Anthony Slater of The Athletic recently reported that the Warriors are “not actively” shopping Poole, he noted that nobody outside of Curry “is safe” from being dealt this summer.
Poole, who signed a four-year deal worth up to $140 million last October, averaged a career-high 20.4 points per game last season but struggled during the playoffs, averaging just 10.3 points. His contract would be more than enough of a salary filler to land a high-profile player in return, especially if Golden State included the 19th pick in a potential deal.
Golden State won’t be the only organization trying to acquire higher draft capital, as several lottery teams are interested in trading back. Regardless of whether the Warriors strike a deal, the 2023 NBA Draft, scheduled for June 22, should not disappoint.