Golden State Warriors forward James Wiseman’s rookie campaign was uneven, to say the least. He flashed enormous potential, made his share of rookie mistakes, lost his starting job and had several health issues, culminating with a torn meniscus in his knee that ended his campaign early.
Plus, the most important aspect of his development isn’t ideal — he struggled while playing alongside Warriors superstar guard, Stephen Curry. In fact, overall, Golden State was worse with Wiseman on the floor than with him out there, owning a plus-2.6 rating when Wiseman was not playing and a minus-8.8 when he was on the floor.
Now that some Warriors observers are calling for the Warriors to trade Wiseman for a polished veteran that can assist in a championship run next season, general manager Bob Myers was sure to say the team doesn’t want to trade Wiseman when he talked to reporters on Monday.
He also said that he hoped Wiseman could simplify some things during the offseason. Here’s his quote, courtesy of Anthony Slater of The Athletic.
As I watched Wiseman’s uneven development unfold, the answer to me was clear: simplify the game for Wiseman. No post-ups. None. Defense, rebounding and running the floor should be Wiseman’s only concerns.
He might not develop into a Joel Embiid-type right away with that philosophy, but what are the chances of that happening anyway? The Warriors are best to have Wiseman fill a limited but important role, similar to that of former Warriors center JaVale McGee.
That should help Curry, right? Golden State will always thrive with a small ball lineup –with forward Draymond Green at center, primarily — while Curry is running the show. It seems that the Warriors would do well to inch Wiseman’s development along more slowly and let him do what he’s able to naturally: run, jump and dunk. Perhaps Myers and the front office has finally figured that out.
(Photo credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)