The Golden State Warriors are 8-6 on the season and coming off two of the better wins of this NBA season, a come-from-behind effort against the defending champion Lakers and a thorough drubbing of the Spurs.
Both Kelly Oubre Jr. and Andrew Wiggins have, at long last, put together a string of solid outings, and rookie big man James Wiseman had his best game, putting up 20 points, six rebounds and four assists.
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So maybe it is not the best time to be looking at potential blockbuster trades for the Warriors. But let’s do it anyway.
At Bleacher Report this week, the Warriors were labeled among the league’s potential “Movers and Shakers” at the March trade deadline, which makes sense. The team owns the first-round pick of the Minnesota Timberwolves in next year’s well-regarded NBA draft (currently the No. 3 pick) and still could deal away Wiseman, whose value is surging.
Here what BR’s Zach Buckley wrote:
Depending on how aggressive the Dubs want to get, they could shake up the trade market by putting two of the league’s top chips in play. Between rookie center James Wiseman and an incoming top-three-protected first-round pick from the Minnesota Timberwolves, Golden State might have the trade assets to chase just about anyone.
Warriors Possess Two Highly Valuable Trade Assets
Wiseman and the Wolves’ pick have an enormous value around the league, and the question is whether any player will shake free on the trade market to warrant Golden State giving away those assets.
Two Spurs former All-Stars—DeMar DeRozan and LaMarcus Aldridge—are expected to hit the market but both are on expiring contracts and are in their 30s (DeRozan is 31, Aldridge 35).
Wiseman and the pick would also be too stiff a price to pay for a guy like Aaron Gordon, who has had the Warriors’ interest before. Perhaps another first-rounder could get a deal like that done, but the Magic are not yet enacting a fire sale on players.
No, if the Warriors are to give up either of their two sterling assets, it would have to be for an elite player in return. And it is likely that the most elite player on the docket at the trade deadline will be Wizards star Bradley Beal.
Bradley Beal Would Be Warriors’ Top Trade Target
The Wizards have not yet given any indication that they want to send away the 27-year-old Beal, who is averaging a league-best 34.9 points to go with 5.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists. But Beal has kept the team on notice that he wants to win, and if it is clear the Wizards are not in position to do so—they’re 3-8 now—he could approach the team with a trade request ahead of the deadline.
Washington does not want to trade Beal, but if he were to lodge a request, the Wizards are unlikely to get a better offer than one built around Andrew Wiggins, Wiseman and the Timberwolves’ pick in the upcoming draft.
The Warriors would be taking a risk in dumping a package like that, but putting Beal in a backcourt with Stephen Curry would be worth it for this season, as well as when Klay Thompson can again get healthy next season. It would be, potentially, a lot of firepower and three players who would mesh well on the floor.
We’re still a long way from the trade deadline. But for “movers and shakers” like the Warriors, Beal is worth keeping an eye on.
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