Golden State Warriors: If They Had a Draft Pick, Who Should They Take?


Former Golden State Warriors shooting guard Monta Ellis was selected 40th overall in the second-round of the 2005 draft. Ellis quickly emerged as a prolific scorer and playmaker for the Warriors. He looked like one of the Warriors’ key young pieces but was traded to Milwaukee last year.

Just this past season, Draymond Green emerged as a quality role player and backup forward for the Warriors. Green was a second-round pick out of Michigan State with some obvious flaws coming out of college.

In the upcoming 2013 NBA draft, the Golden State Warriors hold zero draft picks. In 2008, the Warriors traded away there first-round draft choice for this season in exchange for point guard Marcus Williams. Williams played nine games with the Warriors, struggling to progress the way Golden State management sought.

Apr 26, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts after making a three point basket against the Denver Nuggets in the fourth quarter during game three of the first round of the 2013 NBA playoffs at Oracle Arena. The Warriors defeated the Nuggets 110-108. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Currently, he’s playing for Unicaja Malaga, a Spanish club in the Euroleague. If the Warriors current management could go back in time and hit the undo button on that trade, they would without a doubt,  as even a possible developmental project has more of an NBA future than Williams.

The Warriors also traded away there second-round pick in this year’s draft, but second rounders are not difficult to acquire. Most years, it only takes a little bit of money to get one or trading a current European project to receive a draft pick.

So, if the Warriors did have a late first or second-round draft choice in this year’s draft, we provided some insight on who they should select.

C.J. Leslie (N.C. State)

Leslie was one of the best athletes in college basketball last season. He is incredibly long, and for someone that is almost 6’9’’, he is an elite dunker and very good player in the transition game. His length allows him to be  a stretch four, but his lack of strength could pose a problem at the next level.

However, Leslie over-dribbles and is not a very good shooter. His lack of physical strength would be a problem if he was forced to replace Carl Landry.

Leslie’s perfect NBA comparison is Earl Clark, a current NBA player who would be a good fit with the Dubs. His main problem is his motor, but Mark Jackson could be the guy to motivate him. If he was on the board in the low 40’s, he is definitely worth the chance.

Lorenzo Brown (N.C. State)

Mar 22, 2013; Dayton, OH, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack guard Lorenzo Brown (2) drives to the basket against the Temple Owls during the second round of the 2013 NCAA tournament at University of Dayton Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Leslie’s teammate, Lorenzo Brown, would also be a good addition to the Warriors.

Brown, a 6’5’’ point guard, is long and wirey. He has good quickness and agility. His handle is also excellent, but he is not very efficient on the offensive end, mainly because he is a mediocre shooter with inconsistent mechanics.

However, defensively, Brown would provide plenty of good defense for the Warriors, and if Jarrett Jack departs, he would be a quality replacement.

Tim Hardaway Jr. (Michigan)

Tim Hardaway’s stock is on the rise. Some draft websites have him going in the lottery. Others have him going late in the first round. But the Warriors’ management is not against trading into the first round. Bleacher Report’s Jimmy Spencer tweeted on May 29 that Joe Lacob said the Warriors could possibly acquire a late first round pick.

If they do, then Hardaway Jr. would be a perfect option.

Hardaway has the size, talent, skill level and mental makeup to succeed on the next level. He is a good athlete and a smart player. He would also provide a quality young scoring punch if Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry left via free agency.

More importantly, think about how cool it would be to see a Hardaway playing for the Warriors again.

Pierre Jackson (Baylor)

Jackson is another one of these late first round, early second round draft choices. He is a terrific athlete with an excellent first step and ball-handling ability. If Carl Landry doesn’t opt out and Golden State acquires a second-round pick, than Jackson could be an option due to his extremely effective pick and roll play.

Apr 2, 2013; New York, NY, USA; Baylor Bears player Pierre Jackson (55) reacts after making a basket against the Brigham Young Cougars during the second half of the NIT Tournament semifinal at Madison Square Garden. Baylor won the game 76-70. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Jackson’s biggest problem is on the defensive end, where his 5’10’’ stature would pose a problem. On top of his height, Jackson’s 7’6’’ standing reach would be the smallest of any prospect in the NBA database.

Nate Wolters (South Dakota State)

The Warriors will need point guard depth if Jarrett Jack leaves via free agency, and Wolters is another possible replacement option that is projected to go in the second round.

The South Dakota State product has good size 6’5’’ with shoes on for an NBA point guard but lacks the speed, explosiveness and length needed to be an elite professional defender. adds that Wolters is not a great three-point shooter and would need to be more consistent at the next level if he wanted to play a major role.

Wolters is an intelligent player and could possibly be the next Grevis Vasquez or Jose Calderon, two pass-first, play-making point guards.