Just as his NBA career was getting started, the Golden State Warriors will be without their treasured rookie, James Wiseman, for at least 7-10 days due to a sprained wrist. According to reports, the team’s first-round pick of the 2020 NBA Draft will not be making an appearance in the lineup for at least the Warriors’ next four matchups.
Warriors Without Rookie James Wiseman
Per Anthony Slater’s Twitter, Wiseman sustained this wrist injury that will have him out for at least 7-10 days where he will then be re-evaluated. However, it is not certain that the rookie will return after this time period is up. Once he is re-evaluated it is possible that he could miss more playing time. It will become more clear how much time Wiseman needs once this previously mentioned time span has elapsed.
As the starting center for the majority of the Warriors’ 2020-21 season so far, the No. 2 overall pick was just recently removed from his starting position to a bench role by head coach Steve Kerr. He was replaced by Kevon Looney who will now be taking on much of a larger role than that now that Wiseman is out.
Wiseman was playing 21.4 minutes a game before being removed from his starting role, now the rookie is averaging 19 minutes in his new role off the bench.
After playing 20 games this season, the 7-foot center has averaged 12.2 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 1,3 blocks per game. Wiseman has made a slight impression in the league thus far, however, he has had some moments where it’s evident that it is his rookie season.
What Kerr Plans To Do Without Wiseman
After the reports of Wiseman’s injury surfaced, Kerr shed some light as to how he plans to adjust the Warriors’ rotation in response to this now missing component.
According to Kerr, the void left by the rookie’s injury will be filled by multiple players. Looney, Eric Paschall, and veteran Draymond Green will be expected to take on larger roles in light of Wiseman’s absence. Out of the three, Looney is the only healthy traditional center active on the Warriors’ roster. He is expected to receive more minutes in addition to Green and Paschall in a more small-ball lineup per Anthony Slater’s Twitter.
With the news of Wiseman’s injury, it seems that Looney will resume his starting position from the last four games. A small-ball lineup isn’t anything new to Kerr and the Warriors as that has been a reliable strategy for the team even during their NBA Finals runs.