The 2020 NBA Draft is quickly approaching and it seems the board is beginning to shape with who will be drafted where on Wednesday, November 18th.
Reports now have former Illawarra Hawks guard and high school star LaMelo Ball going #1 to the Minnesota Timberwolves. News like this helps to narrow down who teams like the Golden State Warriors may choose, or if they decide to trade the pick. For now, every team is operating as if Ball will be off the board first per ESPN’s Jonathan Givony latest report on the NBA Draft.
“Unless a surprise trade completely disrupts the top of the draft, LaMelo Ball, Anthony Edwards and James Wiseman are likely to make up the top three in some order, according to conversations with multiple team executives, scouts and agents. Most NBA front offices are operating under the assumption that Ball is going No. 1 — either to the Minnesota Timberwolves or a team that trades up to select him.”
The Warriors May Select Edwards
If the Ball is selected first by the Timberwolves then all signs currently point to Edwards likely being selected by the Warriors.
In short, Edwards makes the most sense currently. With this scoring prowess and athleticism, he would be able to contribute to the Warriors’ second unit without the pressure of needing to impress in the starting lineup right away. This will not only allow him time to grow as a player and work on other aspects of his game, but also will help him learn how to play off the ball within the Warriors system, given Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins will all receive more touches than he will for now.
Edwards is already learning from being around the Warriors and is taking in all the advice he’s getting from them. A positive sign if he is drafted by the team. After a recent pre-draft workout, he was quoted discussing what he took away from the experience.
“It was a good workout, it was a learning lesson. I learned a lot from the workout. I feel like that workout changed my mindset. That was a great workout.”
“They gave me some key advice, some key points that I needed,” Edwards said. “I took those and ran and I just feel like it changed the way I approached everything.”
“Wherever I fall, I just thank God and just get better.”
The Warriors Could Trade The Pick
If the Warriors do not immediately make their pick, it could be because they have a deal in place with another team. As I mentioned before, there were some rumors about LaMarcus Aldridge of the San Antonio Spurs but that is doubtful given his age and contract.
However, three teams are emerging as trade partners for the Warriors if an opportunity presents itself. The first would be the Detroit Pistons and their number 7 pick plus Thon Maker. A pretty decent haul but not enough for the value of the #2 in this year’s draft. Without a doubt, the Warriors would find value in a pick this low, yet if more could be gained elsewhere this becomes the least likely outcome.
Second would be the New York Knicks and their #8 pick. Yes, 7 is higher in the draft than 8 but this pick would be offered alongside their frontcourt sensation Mitchell Robinson. He’s played very well over the course of his career and would be able to contribute immediately on the defensive end for the Warriors and be a consistent lob threat on the offensive end. The Knicks as of late are moving in a more positive direction, therefore the possibility of this happening may be less than expected.
The last potential trade would be with the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls currently have the #4 pick but would also offer their center, Wendell Carter Jr., within the deal. This would unquestionably be the best of the three deals as the Bulls center is still growing in size but has the build to battle most centers in the paint and an offensive game that complements the style of the Warriors shooting over 50% from the field. Additionally, the Warriors would still have the #4 pick to draft a valuable young player to add to their nucleus moving forward.
Things are beginning to heat up as we get closer to the draft and they’ll only get more exciting as the week progresses.