The Golden State Warriors are hoping that Leandro Barbosa can have a bounce back season this year and be a valuable offensive asset coming off the bench. Barbosa has shown flashes of “The Blur” at the FIBA World Cup of Basketball and is leading a Brazil team that finished 4-1 record in the group stage. Their only loss came at the hands of the host country, Spain.
Barbosa leads his team in points, steals, and minutes played. He is averaging 13.6 points per game and is shooting 54.8% from the field and 56.2% from beyond the arc. Barbosa’s play should get Warriors fans a little excited, if he’s able to provide an offensive spark to the second unit, the Warriors will be able to rest Klay Thompson and Steph Curry on a more consistent basis during the regular season.
The 31-year-old shooting guard has had some trouble staying healthy, but he looks good in Spain and is playing a lot of minutes. Barbosa is not expected to be the first man off the bench, but the Warriors hope he will add some depth to the second unit. In his last game, Barbosa scored 22 points, dished out 5 assists and had 4 steals against the Egyptians.
Warriors fans are hopeful they will see his quick first step next season, which he became known for when he played for Mike D’Antoni’s “Seven Seconds or Less” offense while a member of the Phoenix Suns. Barbosa will be 32 in November, but he feels healthy and this could be his last opportunity to once again become an important piece on a championship contending team.
This is a low risk acquisition for the Warriors and if he’s able to lead Brazil to a deep run at the FIBA World Cup, his play should carry over to the regular season. Brazil will take on South American rival Argentina in the Round of 16 in Madrid, Spain. This should be a good match-up and a great opportunity for Barbosa to show his abilities on an international stage.