Could the Golden State Warriors select a Draymond Green clone with the seventh pick in Thursday night’s NBA draft?
No, there aren’t any 6-foot-6, 230-pound guys with identical facial features as Green – including his pearly whites and infectious smile – but there’s apparently a massive, multi-positional prospect who could be chosen, and he thinks he has a lot in common with the 2017 Defensive Player of the Year.
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As reported by Heavy.com’s Ashley Wijangco last month, there have already been several comparisons made between Barnes and Green, and the former Florida State guard has mentioned the longtime Dubs starter as a guy who he molds his game after.
“Barnes specifically noted how they both ‘bring that love and passion to the game'” Wijangco wrote. “Barnes’ draft stock has risen as of late, and numerous mock drafts have him being taken around the No. 5 or No. 6 pick.”
Could Barnes Be There at No. 7 and Should the Dubs Take Him?
Despite being just two days away from the NBA draft, it’s still completely up in the air as to what the Warriors will do with the No. 7 pick, let alone the 14th overall selection. Though Barnes is a popular choice for the sixth overall selection by the Oklahoma City Thunder, there is bound to be some movement involving the trade of picks and/or players within the top-10.
If Golden State holds onto the seventh pick and the 19-year-old is still on the board, should they go after him?
Here’s what general manager Bob Myers said during his pre-draft press conference on Monday about the upcoming draft and the pair of first-round picks.
We’d like this draft pick, whether it’s 7 or 14 to come in and play. But we would like them to provide depth. We would like, whoever we take, to be supplemental and to be playable. We would like that. We would. If there’s a player that stands out, but if there’s a player that we think can be better, and you say, you know what, we could go short-term and take this guy and maybe gives us eight minutes a game, but if we do this guy, yeah, he may not give us those eight minutes, but next year he could start, or could he give us 20 minutes.
Based on what Myers said, and what NBC Sports Bay Area Warriors reporter Kendra Andrews wrote on Tuesday, Barnes could certainly fit the mold of what the organization is looking for.
“… it makes sense for the Warriors to draft someone who can help right away. But, what doesn’t make sense is the assumption of how ready the player needs to be,” Andrews wrote. “The Warriors are not looking for their next superstar in this year’s draft. They already have that, and two other elite players. In this draft, they just need someone to come off the bench and simply not be a liability.”
Green Has Been a Defensive Stalwart Over the Last Decade
If Barnes aspires to be a defensive stud like Green – or Ben Simmons (for now) of the Philadelphia 76ers – he will have a lot to mark off his checklist once he enters the NBA.
Since entering the league in 2012 as one of the biggest steals in recent draft history, Green has been a three-time All-Star, three-time NBA-champion, six-time member of the All-Defensive team (including four first-team nods), and has earned All-NBA honors twice (second team in 2016, third team in 2017). He was the league-leader in steals per game (2.0) for the 2016-2017 season, which was the same year he won the Defensive Player of the Year.
One could argue that Green has been the NBA’s most consistently elite defensive player of the last decade. If Barnes is the real deal and can be a fraction of what Green has been, Myers and company may be wise to take him at No. 7.