The Golden State Warriors enter the offseason with a few looming questions, none of which concern the 2013 draft. The Warriors, who have had a lottery pick in eight of the past 10 seasons, chose a good season not to rely on the draft to improve as a team. Provided they get and remain healthy this offseason, they do not have a gaping hole in their team that could be filled with any draft picks.
Hindsight is 20/20. Looking back at the 2012 draft, the Warriors made all the right moves and will be a winning team for many seasons to come. Harrison Barnes and Festus Ezeli, the Warriors’ two first round picks, proved themselves throughout the season. They started 81 and 41 games, respectively. Golden State’s second-round pick, Draymond Green, also had impactful playing time and often led the team defensively. The Warriors could not have asked for a more successful offseason in putting together a winning team.
As Stephen Curry, David Lee, Andrew Bogut and Brandon Rush all look to get healthy during the offseason, the question of how their health will fare during the rigors of another season remains. Assuming they remain healthy, the Warriors will have an even more dangerous team next season. Rush, who was injured in the second game of the season, will alleviate the impending departure of either Jarrett Jack or Carl Landry. The roster is full of young players, role players and All Stars.
No draft pick in 2013 can help the Warriors improve in any position. Take a look at the expected starting and bench lineup for the following season:
PG: Curry, Jack(?)
SG: Klay Thompson, Rush
SF: Barnes, Green
PF: Lee, Landry(?)
C: Bogut, Ezeli
Head coach Mark Jackson will likely mix-and-match players throughout the course of the season. Ultimately, if the Warriors can remain healthy, they will have a nine-man rotation with at least a good, impact player at each position.
The player with the biggest question mark in terms of health is Bogut. He has been dragging a bum ankle around for most of the season. For big men like him, any injuries around the feet need to be taken into consideration when talking long-term expectancies.
Bogut is surrounded by an offense that will compensate for his fear of shooting the basketball. Defense will be his primary assignment, and as long as he has the ability to close out on shooters and protect the rim, the Warriors have no need for a draft pick to compensate.
The 2013 NBA draft is looking to be historically weak. Though there are a few players who could make a lottery team better, no player stands out as a talent that can take the Warriors to the next level in the present or in the future. For once, the Warriors would benefit little from bringing in a rookie.