With the Golden State Warriors having a surprisingly successful season, even without All-Star Klay Thompson, they look more like playoff contenders every week. Although they’re still struggling to put together the pieces of this almost new Warriors’ lineup, considering making one more addition to the lineup could help develop Golden State into a standout playoff team.
Adding another star player to the Golden State roster would indeed be beneficial. However, any blockbuster trade that the Warriors could potentially propose would more than likely include Andrew Wiggins, and the Warriors might not be ready to part ways with their guard just yet.
Andrew Wiggins May Be the Reason
A key factor of the Warriors’ success currently, and why they have been able to quiet preseason critics, is largely All-Star Steph Curry’s MVP-like performance this season. The Warriors were indeed the worst team in the entire league last season with Curry playing only five games, and it’s guaranteed that the results would be the same if not for Curry. He is averaging 29.4 points, 6.1 assists, and 5.4 rebounds—all he needs to go with these numbers are more wins.
Not only is Curry carrying a heavy offensive load for the Warriors, but the No. 1 pick of the 2014 NBA draft, Wiggins, has also been one of the team’s highly-rated players.
This season will be Wiggins’ first full season with the team and he has made an impact on almost every game. He’s managed to stay healthy and be effective on the defensive side that the Warriors are struggling with. His growth as a player on the Warriors’ roster has been evident. In his six seasons in the NBA, although he’s averaged 20-plus points in three of them, his shooting percentage hasn’t gotten above 45.9%, until this season with the Warriors.
Wiggins is now shooting at 46.8% from the field, which is his career-high. He is also leading the team in blocks per game just as the team is having defensive issues this season.
If the Warriors were to propose a blockbuster trade this season, they would have to match salaries with the incoming player, which is where Wiggins would come into play. He’s currently getting $29.5 million this season and is owed $65 million over the next two seasons. However, this was the price they had to pay when they traded D’Angelo Russell and got the Timberwolves’ 2021 first-round pick.
Wiggins Living Up to His Salary
In addition to paying out Wiggins, the team also has Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green all on high-salary contracts. So, in order to bring in a blockbuster player, trading one of those four would be a must, and the latter three are most likely off-limits.
Yet, Wiggins has done a decent job making sure his name isn’t mentioned in trade rumors. He is currently averaging 17.6 points this season and striving to unlock his full potential on the Golden State roster and help the team reach the playoffs.
However, there is still a great chance that the Warriors could pick up their pace and contend for a higher seed. The team is currently only 2.5 games behind the Suns, who are fourth in the Western Conference. The Warriors have also had one of the toughest schedules in the league so far with an easier schedule remaining.
Wiggins’ improved play may be the reason why the Warriors have not engaged in a blockbuster trade, though the NBA deadline is not until March 25. But, with Wiggins still on the roster, the team can hopefully have a bright future.