Despite being a Most Improved Player candidate last season, explosive guard Jordan Poole is set to make another major leap for the Golden State Warriors in 2022-23. Blessed with an offensive skill set the envy of many, the sky truly is the limit for the 23-year-old heading into his fourth NBA season.
Poole is currently eligible for a contract extension of his rookie deal, with talks likely to progress further once the Warriors return from their upcoming trip to Japan. Regardless of whether that eventuates or not, he’ll be looking to prove his value as one of, if not the best sixth men in the league.
Golden State Warriors guard Jordan Poole has lofty expectations after a breakout, championship-winning run with the franchise last season.
Here are three goals that, although optimistic, are certainly achievable given his talents. Missing these marks certainly won’t be an indication of a disappointing season, but hitting them will prove that Poole is worth every bit of a $100 million player.
Average 30 minutes during the postseason
This might be the most important goal from a team standpoint, demonstrating that Poole’s defense has improved enough to hold up to longer periods of playoff basketball. He averaged exactly 30 minutes during the 2021-22 regular season, but that dipped to 27.5 come the postseason (despite starting the first five games as Stephen Curry returned from injury).
Given their sheer offensive firepower as a trio, Steve Kerr will be hoping the three-guard lineup of Poole, Curry and Klay Thompson will become much more viable defensively. Of all 17 Warriors players to take the floor last season, Poole ranked 15th and Thompson last in defensive box plus-minus.
Lead the Warriors in scoring during the regular season
No, not from an average scoring standpoint. That title should remain with Curry. Poole should lead the Warriors in total points across the course of the season though, having finished second to Curry in 2021-22.
With the Warriors title holders and having nothing major to prove during the regular season, veterans Curry and Thompson should get rests on a regular basis. If Poole were to average 21 points across 80-games, and Curry 25 over 65-games, then the former would lead total points by around 50.
Shoot 50/40/90 during the regular season
Poole’s inefficiencies were glaring earlier in his career, but that aspect is now an astounding strength as proven during the playoffs. He shot 50.8% from the floor, 39.1% from three-point range, and 91.5% at the line, narrowly missing 50/40/90 shooting splits across the 22-game postseason.
Could he expand that and achieve the rare feat across an 82-game season? While it’s highly unlikely given Poole’s volume of difficult shots, it’s a possibility provided his rate of improvement continues.