With the No. 2 overall pick of the 2020 NBA Draft, the Golden State Warriors selected James Wiseman, a star center from Memphis University who only played three games during his collegiate career. Debates have been going on all season concerning whether the Warriors made the right selection or not being that current front-runner of Rookie of the Year, LaMelo Ball was still on the board when the Warriors selected. While No. 1 pick, Anthony Edwards, and No. 2 pick, Ball, have both been averaging nearly 30 minutes per game, Wiseman has been given a bench role that doesn’t really have him on the court as much as his draft classmates. Reportedly, there is some tension in the Warriors’ front office as they struggle to balance Wiseman’s workload for the remainder of the season.
Wiseman is Causing Tension
The Warriors are currently experiencing a quite difficult season trying to pick up the pieces from their past and still remain as contenders for a championship in the future. An argument that has been circulating throughout the Warriors fanbase is whether Wiseman was a great pick or not and could he eventually take on a larger role n the team.
Per ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne in an episode of “Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective” Podcast, there is some tension in the Warriors’ front office as they continue to find a balance for the rookie.
“There is a source of organizational tension on the way that they’ve used Wiseman this year. There’s some people in the organization that really want them to put James Wiseman out there more. Not necessarily with the benching and all that, that’s a separate matter. But just putting him out there more. Letting him play through mistakes, letting him play more minutes, heavier minutes like the other two rookies even though the Warriors are trying to contend for the playoffs.”
It seems that the Warriors are in a predicament concerning what to do with Wiseman’s workload. Shelbourne basically asserts that some in the Warriors organizations want to put Wiseman in the lineup more in order for him to make mistakes and actually learn from them based on experience versus continuously keeping him out in order to fine-tune his game.
Doing What is Beneficial For Wiseman and the Team
The Warriors are now sitting at ninth place in a stacked Western Conference after losing to the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday night. With a 20-20 record sitting at .500, the team is yearning for improvement in order to remain as playoff contenders. Although it is disappointing that the Warriors are in ninth place in the conference, it is important to remember that the top ten teams still get an opportunity to compete in the playoffs as the teams in the seven through ten spots get to play for the final two seeds.
The Warriors are right in the middle of choosing what they should do next with Wiseman, unable to decide if they want to put him in the game more while potentially sacrificing wins, or jeopardize his future while attempting to secure wins. Wiseman has only played for more than half of a game in just 11 of the 29 games that he played this season. 14 of those games he was only in for less than 20 minutes.
What the team decides to do with Wiseman for the rest of the season could potentially affect him as he heads into the offseason and might not be beneficial for the start of his NBA career. Wiseman is averaging 11.8 points, six rebounds, and 20.8 minutes per game.