So we have a pick, eh? This situation broke perfectly for the Warriors, a franchise perpetually addicted to standing on low expectations and declaring themselves tall.

I’m glad they tanked for it, but the seventh pick is a bit like an airplane meal. Nobody is excited for the airplane meal, but a rescinded airplane meal makes for an especially boring and unpleasant flight. It’s fun to at least think about what the offering might be, even if it will likely be beef stroganoff, shaded greyer than an oozing rain cloud. And if the in-flight meal is rescinded, but given back by some miracle? Well,  that can make people feel like the aircraft is flying to a Michelin star.

Number seven can yield the occasional winner, though. Fans carp about Steph Curry, but he’s an undeniable catch at that selection spot. Would you rather have gotten Johnny Flynn? What about No. 8 pick Jordan Hill?

The Dubs have a shot at a decent player, even if it’s unlikely. I’d personally love for them to bet on the side of unpolished potential. Why? Because I want the Warriors to be in the business of confidently creating value for once, rather than blithely destroying it. San Antonio drafted Kawhi Leonard and promptly gave him a jumpshot. Good teams manufacture talent as much as they find talent, the draft isn’t simply a guessing game. There were many draft busts who might have turned out fine in a different situation.

So, my preference is for us to find out whether the Warriors have really changed as an organization, whether they can develop raw talent. I ached for the Warriors to be that particular kind of team when I read this Jonathan Givony description of Terrence Jones:

“While it is easy to find a niche for Jones’s skill set on a NBA roster, the challenge for front offices will be ensuring that he’s put in a position to reach his full potential –a much more complex proposition.”

It doesn’t have to be the mercurial Jones, specifically. It could be the intriguingly awful shooting Tony Wroten, or maybe Andre Drummond after an improbable draft slide. I just want the Warriors to be confident in their development abilities. I want them too avoid playing the kind of safe that doubles as a, “We can’t grow talent” admission. In other words, no thanks on Harrison Barnes.

  • joshua citrak

    essentially, the #7 in and of itself, isn’t much. i think we can all agree there isn’t a game changer there, most likely no starters; role players at best. this team has an awful lot of holes and with our terrible cap situation, we have to bring in as much cheap talet (used loosely) as possible.

    that being said, the #7 isn’t necessarily coveted by anyone as trade bait, unless we package it with perhaps a bad contract or two (jefferson?) but even that seems pretty far fetched. our bad contracts are doubly bad because the players we’d like to move (jefferson, goose) are essentially worthless at their current salaries.

    unless the W’s FO can swing that pick or a combo of picks for a relatively cheap, young, but established player, the W’s should just draft BPA and work on development.

    not sure all those end of season losses are gonna be worth it…

  • ivanbe

    Whack Jack: “Pretty damned good bench”? Are you talking about the actual, physical bench that our below-average backups are sitting on? The only position at which we have adequate bench players is SF.

  • DeuelWarrior

    I like the idea that a team should build itself.. not buy itself. Look at OKC and the Green Bay Packers. Packers do it in a different sport where roughly 49 players on their 52 man roster were all drafted and have only played for the Packers. OKC does it well too, granted it helped that they landed a big time talent like Durant but they also drafted Westbrook, Ibaka.

    With a solid core you can then build the structure. With Curry, Bogut, Lee we have the core we need. We have budding youth in Klay, and to a lesser extent CJ/JT. We have some grit players off the bench in BR/DM. Everyone else in my mind is interchangeable with anyone from the draft or any free agent.

    The draft this year is really nice from pick 10-25 or so, it may even dip pretty well into the second round. I would either like us to draft a player we with a solid basketball mind and a clean set of skills at #7, or trade that pick. The people we have in our front office has the capability and the trust in themselves to make the right choice (see Klay Thompson… Jerry West sold him to be exactly what he was).

    One thing that I don’t think we should dwell on as much is their mental game. Granted if there are HUGE red flags then maybe we should shy away. Klay came in with a drug blemish in college and I doubt anyone called him FIREY or plays with a EXTREME amount of desire. What he does is play his game and once he found out/got comfortable with what that was, he shined.

    If we keep #7 get the best player available, if we trade down get MKG or Thomas Robinson. If we trade back get one of Houston’s picks or somewhere in the mid first and maybe another second, well then trade all of our seconds for another mid-late first. We could pick up a Kendell Marshal, Tyler Zeller, Arnett Moultrie, Terrence Jones for the mid first round guys. Late first early second I would like to see(depending on the selection in the first) Tyshawn Taylor(good coaching since high school and focuses well on defense), Draymon Green, Darrius Miller( In my mind would be a HUGE GET in the second round. He is 6’8″ 235 and he is the 4 year man out of Kentuky…. he was the anchor of that team.. wether he came off the bench or started he came and played hard and well. Smart player that would not take much to get into a rotation… if we loose Rush and keep McGuire then we should draft Rush’s replacement in Miller)

    Well those are the random early morning ramblings from no sort of expert, not sort of writer, just a sizable Warriors fan.

  • Whack Jack

    Another crappy article, eh?

    Its utterly stupid to try to spin having the #7 pick as a bad thing, especially when next year will be our first season with an all-star big man, no Monta, a legit SG, and a pretty damned good bench. Lee brings solid play at PF every night and Curry– if healthy– is a cornerstone type PG.

    Add in four draft picks and an ambitious and clever front office, and Warriors fans have got a real reason to be optimistic.

    But I guess to the jaded sardonic wanna be writer its too blase to write anything positive.
    So just take the negative route and take your shots. Don’t worry so much about actual analysis and insight, as that is clearly not your strong point.

    • Bobby G

      Whack Jack, while the #7 pick is nice, it’s no guarantee to the team’s success. As for the #30, #35, #52 picks… sounds like those guys will be filling out our D League team’s roster nicely.

      There is a downside to keeping the pick this year: we still cannot trade our 2013 or 2014 first round pick. That means as the 2012-13 season progresses, and some nice veteran role player starts getting shopped, we don’t have any first round picks to offer in a trade, which is typically what teams want in exchange for aging but still productive vets. That may actually put us at a disadvantage, not being able to pick up that key piece that clearly the team needs (at that hypothetical point in the season).

      Instead we’ll have a #7 pick. Sure people can go through history and find good #7 picks. It’s easier to go through and find non-impact #7 picks, or even easier non-impact #1-#7 picks. I’m not, nor is ESS, saying that having the #7 pick is worse than losing it to Utah, but it’s certainly not a whole lot better, considering the circumstances.

      PS… I wouldn’t have felt the urge to jump in if you hadn’t bashed the writer unduly (IMO).