The Golden State Warriors had to go 40 years between NBA titles, but fans will no doubt tell you that this year’s triumph over the Cleveland Cavaliers was worth the wait. With the squad on the verge of returning most of its key contributors from this championship unit, there were really no pressing issues for the Warriors entering this year’s draft.
Golden State sat in the 30th spot in the first round, and with its only choice of the night, grabbed UCLA forward Kevon Looney. While most people view late first round picks as not all that important, this was an extremely important get for the Warriors. Why? Because Looney isn’t exactly your typical late first round choice. And actually, given that the Warriors aren’t your typical NBA team, the combination of the two works out perfectly.
Looney is filled with an insane amount of potential in terms of how much more development can be made with his game, and while his 6’9” frame is fantastic for the small forward position, his wingspan is a ridiculous 7’4” overall. Having that type of reach out of your small forward is simply a fantastic option, and as Golden State develops him, he could really turn into quite the dangerous player.
Honestly, there are few things that Looney doesn’t do well. He’s excellent on the glass, has a nice jump shot, and could be quite the three-point threat also. As with most young players entering the NBA, he’ll need to put on more size and strength in order to battle with the veterans in the league, but that will come with age and experience.
Graphic via westallisnow
Looking Ahead Into the Warriors’ Future
Again, the Warriors were in a great position entering the draft because of the fact that there was absolutely no pressure on them. When you’re coming off of a world championship, that’s usually one of the perks. And it was also a late first round pick, which again, seems to have this stigma attached to it in terms of what teams will get out of these players.
Well, Golden State was able to get a player that is more than just a “late first round pick.” The Warriors added a player to their roster that will fit in well with their current crop of players, and he’ll also be able to learn things from players like Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green.
Looney might not be an NBA-All Star any time in the near future, but he can be a player that develops himself into key contributor simply because of his size and ability to rebound and shoot. The good thing is that the Warriors are desperate for an immediate contributor, so that will give Looney plenty of time to hone his skills and reach his potential.
Graphic via todaysfastbreak