This is a huge offseason for the Golden State Warriors. Steve Kerr and Bob Myers have a lot of work to do if they want to return to championship form. One of the questions they must answer is whether Marquese Chriss has done enough in the blue and gold to secure a starting spot next season.
The Warriors have a ton of assets at their disposal if they want to make significant moves. They have the #2 overall pick, a $17.2 million TPE, and they have a lightly protected first round pick from Minnesota next season. That is more than enough to secure roster depth. If Myers chooses to do so.
Chriss started in 18 games for Golden State last season, and was quite impressive. He averaged 9.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks per game. That’s not to mention his field goal percentage (54.5%) led the entire team. His athleticism, high motor, floor running, and ability to play above the rim gave the Warriors a different edge offensively. Chriss would need to improve defensively. He had the 2nd worst defensive rating on the team last season, but showed improvement as his time on the floor increased. The Warriors already know what Chriss brings to the table and that could become a deciding factor come draft day.
On the other hand, Myers could elect to draft James Wiseman, whose name has been tied to Golden State since early last season; or trade the pick for a center that Golden State knows will contribute right away. The Warriors believe they have a three year window to contend with the Warriors core.
This season, teams have been experimenting with small-ball centers. The Rockets have gone completely small with PJ Tucker at center. Which has forced opposing teams like the Lakers to adjust. Could Golden State attempt to recreate this with Marquese Chriss?
Only time will tell.