It’s been a terrific season for the Golden State Warriors so far, and what makes things even better for fans is knowing that this team isn’t even at full strength.
They’ve been without Draymond Green for weeks now as he’s been sidelined with a back injury and recently returned five-time All-Star Klay Thompson. That said, the Warriors finally have James Wiseman practicing which is a positive sign for the 20-year-old center.
The Warriors have yet to see center James Wiseman take the court this season, but he’s back to practicing and is reportedly looking great in his return.
The No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, Wiseman came into the NBA with ultra-high expectations, and his rookie season certainly didn’t quite go over as many expected. Wiseman has reportedly bulked up and is “looking great” at practice.
Wiseman underwent surgery for a torn meniscus which is why he’s missed the time, but it seemed further complications with that pushed his return back. That said, according to NBC Sports’ Monte Poole, Steve Kerr said that Wiseman “practiced today and looked great.”
“He was happy to be out there and we were thrilled to have him,” Kerr continued with via Poole. That’s reassuring for fans that are eagerly awaiting his return to the court.
The 7-foot Wiseman was expected to have a better rookie season than he did. Ending the year early with the injury to his knee, Wiseman averaged 11.5 points per game and shot 51% from the field.
While that’s not necessarily bad, Wiseman’s lack of interior defense and overall struggle on the defensive end cast a shadow on an otherwise decent rookie season. Wiseman averaged 3.1 fouls per game and 5.2 fouls per 36 minutes.
There are a ton of improvement for the center, but there should be hope that he can blossom into one of the most dominant centers in the league.
For Wiseman, we don’t quite know what that could look like, but potentially transitioning into a lite version of Lakers star Anthony Davis would be considered a success. Nonetheless, the talent is there, as is the staff that should be primed to develop a star center.
With the size to make an immediate impact, Wiseman’s return will be huge as the Warriors are riding with one center through the trade deadline. Kevon Looney has been great, but Wiseman back in the rotation will make a huge difference for this team.