By: Maggie Pilloton

With Andris Biedrins proving to be quite useless and ineffective, it’s time for a change for the Warriors. Besides front office moves, the new ownership of Joe Lacob and Peter Guber have failed to make the promised “bold” acquisitions that the fans were expecting. However, as honorary GM of the day (I can dream, right?), I will make the “bold” move to start Jeremy Tyler this upcoming season at center. The Warriors acquired Jeremy Tyler, the 39th pick, on draft night by purchasing him from the Charlotte Bobcats. The 20-year-old, 6-11, 262-pounder originally from San Diego is a potential high-risk, high-reward player who decided to forego his senior year of high school to play overseas in Israel. After a year of hardship, Tyler decided to take his talents to Japan. Despite rumors of maturity issues, Jeremy Tyler understands the significance of being drafted and seems to have great character and spirit. When given his Warriors jersey with the #3 on it he said, “This is what I’ve been working for my whole life. I’ve got it, and now, I can’t lose it.” Tyler seems like he has truly become a mature adult, even though he is only 20 years old. His hard work, determination, and perseverance are his “X factors” that will ultimately give him the edge in the starting center battle.

Compared to his lone competitor for the starting center role, Andris Biedrins, Jeremy Tyler has a more all-around game while not facing the confidence issues that plague Biedrins. When criticized of his past immaturity or his weaknesses, Tyler claims that he will use that as fuel to his fire and just keep pushing every day. In contrast, Andris Biedrins has shown long streaks of diminished confidence. It all starts with Biedrins being too afraid of being fouled while playing and therefore not taking enough shots and not being aggressive enough on rebounds. He’s pretty much the team “pansy.” Biedrins is also accustomed to getting sloppy on defense and committing bad fouls. It’s interesting then that one of Tyler’s strengths is his defense. He can rebound, defend big bodies, and has shown improvement in his blocking ability. Tyler provides a much sounder all-around game than Biedrins, which isn’t saying much because Biedrins is severely offensively challenged. Tyler is extremely athletic for a big man, he has a decent (and improving) mid-range jumpshot, he can play effectively with his back to the basket, and he has decent post moves.


Over the course of Tyler’s season in Japan, he averaged 9.9 points per game, 51.1% field goal percentage, and 6.4 rebounds in 15.4 minutes a game in 33 games (his season was limited due to the earthquake in Japan). In 59 games last season for the Warriors, Biedrins averaged 5 points per game, 53.4% field goal percentage, and 7.2 rebounds per game in 23.7 minutes per game. However, the last 12 games of Jeremy Tyler’s season were his best. If you take his stats in those 12 games and if you convert them to 40 minutes of playing time, his averages would all improve to 30.4 points per game, 56% field goal percentage, and 17 rebounds per game. Yes, these numbers seem slightly inflated and skewed based on the fact that this is only examining his highest point of the season. Tyler will need some intense development to be able to compete at the NBA level. However, with the strong possibility of a lockout this summer, Tyler will have plenty of time to work out his hardest and possibly with fellow Warrior, Dorell Wright, who will also be in the Los Angeles area during summer. Jeremy Tyler finished his season in Japan off with strong numbers while playing his best basketball. The Warriors should expect that he will continue to improve upon each statistical category, and for sure, produce better numbers and at a more effective pace than if Biedrins were starting.

This might seem like a pretty easy plan and one that should be implemented as soon as possible, though Jeremy Tyler has yet to prove himself on and off the court. Yes, he’s made incredible strides in his defense and jumpshot, for example, and yes, he’s also shown that being overseas alone really allowed him to mature and become a better man. That’s all great, but he’s going to have to show Mark Jackson that he can be the “high reward” player that everyone believes he can be. He’s going to have to get stronger, become a better defender, and pretty much improve in every area of his game in order to compete with the best centers of the NBA. Will he be able to win the starting role even if training camp is delayed? Yes. The main reason for this is because Tyler has Mark Jackson’s vote. Mark Jackson has offered to become Tyler’s mentor and father figure during the process. After acquiring Jeremy Tyler on draft night, Mark Jackson said, “I don’t have time to draft somebody who is going to take a couple of years. He’s a big kid, an athlete who can block shots, finish and rebound. He’s going to have every opportunity to do it now. Who’s to say we didn’t get better today?” The Warriors did get better the day they drafted Jeremy Tyler. They even found the starting center that they’ve been searching for. When Mark Jackson sees that he made the right decision to start Jeremy Tyler at center, I bet he says, “Mama, there goes that man.”


6 Responses

  1. rockridge

    Agreed.. Nice article. Monta, Lee, Beans age’s and contract’s make them ‘win now players’ when the rest of the team is built to win in a few years. It makes no sense to keep these guys just as a desperate attempt to eek out 38 wins.. Curry, Thompson, Udoh, Wright, Tyler, Jenkins are all cheap, young, promising players — and represent our NEW future core. Give them the keys now and give them as much time as possible to develop their game.

    Why would we kill our salary cap and developmental time for our youth, to dedicate heavy minutes to Monta/Lee/Beans when they will never get us to the playoffs anyway? To add to EvanZ’s thinking, I would much rather “tank” — win just 25 games developing our youth — keep our playroll down to sign players — and get a quality draft pick. Than watch Monta, Lee and Andris put up meaningless padded stats and still miss the playoffs…

  2. DeuelWarrior

    I watched every pick in the draft. I was hoping we would get Klay in the first round and Jeremy in the second. Not often do I have my eyes on someone in the second round but I knew he could be a huge steal if we got him. I went to be thinking we got Klay and Charles. I woke up to read that we also pick up Tyler.

    This is a great time for the Warriors. We have good talent in Udoh and Lee. Also they have extremely high character which will help Tyler come along.

    The knock on him is his maturity. I strain to find anyone who could go from their junior year in a Souther California High School to a war torn area of the world that only has Micky’D’s as a similarity, and come out the other end clean. I think back to Junior year of high school and I know i could not have.

    I think he is like a more athletic DeMarcus Cousins, he is also far more mature. When he got with an American Coach in Japan he wised up and listened well. The numbers he put up off of 15.4 minutes a night are a great sign.

    In the end all I have to say is thanks to the newly polished front office, we stole this draft with this pick.

  3. George

    This is dead on. Re Evan–last time I checked, Udoh’s not a true center! Go Tyler, bye Biedrins.

  4. Greg Papa

    Tyler should be considered no risk and all reward considering the pick was purchased. With the incredibly weak Warriors frontline, he should be given the opportunity to contribute right away and I think his game will translate better to the NBA than it did overseas. Biedrens is absolute garbage at this point.

  5. EvanZ

    “Compared to his lone competitor for the starting center role, Andris Biedrins, Jeremy Tyler has a more all-around game while not facing the confidence issues that plague Biedrins.”

    Did you completely forget about Udoh?

    Anyway, I’m actually in favor of Tyler starting, but only because I would like to implement a tanking strategy. Starting Klay at SG and Tyler at C would definitely help.