So as it turns out, James Wisman can indeed develop his game as a non-starter.
In his second contest coming off the bench after starting all of the Warriors’ previous games, the rookie center lead the team in scoring, totaling 25 points, a career high, on 9-of-14 shooting, in Golden State’s 123-111 win over the Timberwolves on Wednesday. He added six rebounds and two blocked shots as the Warriors’ record moved to 10-8
I couldn’t believe when some in the media, most notably ESPN’s Warriors writer, suggested that Wiseman’s development would be stunted by his new bench role. Golden State coach Steve Kerr said that development can happen in many places, not just the starting lineup, and Wiseman agreed.
Well, as I mentioned, they were right. Here are Wiseman’s highlights from Wednesday night, courtesy of the Warriors’ Twitter account.
Okay the full highlights are below, but make sure to catch the play of the night, courtesy of Anthony Slater, when a Wiseman block turned into an athletic dunk on a pass from Draymond Green.
And here’s the full highlight package.
Wiseman looks incredible, especially considering his inexperience at just 19 years of age. He hasn’t fared well in some match-ups, such as against the Clippers and the Nuggets, but his promise is exceptional. As are the results on many occasions, as one can plainly see from the highlights.
This was also a big game for the rookie considering the first overall pick, Anthony Edwards, also scored 25. He and Wiseman, the No. 2 pick, will no doubt keep up on each others’ career. So far, it’s advantage Wiseman, with the Warriors sweeping the 2-game, baseball-style series. Next up for Golden State are the Suns in Phoenix on Thursday night.
BONUS INFO: Perhaps Wiseman played better because the Wolves passed on him in the draft? It made him feel some type of way, per Drew Shiller of NBC.
And to fully hammer the point home, here’s Wiseman talking about how much he’s learning from his new vantage point, per Brady Klopker of SB Nation.
(Photo credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)