After speculation around his future earlier this offseason, it appears Jonathan Kuminga is a secure part of the Golden State Warriors’ setup as he prepares for a crucial third season in the league.
But while it seems Kuminga is off the trade block for now, that doesn’t mean teams won’t come calling should a disappointing end in the playoffs further extend into next season. Still just 20-years-old and with dynamic athleticism, Kuminga remains an attractive proposition with All-Star level potential.
Golden State Warriors’ forward Jonathan Kuminga has been listed as an ideal trade target for two teams in the Eastern Conference.
Whether Kuminga can reach that potential with the championship-aspiring Warriors is one of the biggest questions facing the franchise this offseason. If the final answer to that is no, then there’s likely to be no shortage of suitors for the former top ten pick.
In a recent article ‘Imagining Every NBA Team’s Top 3 Trade Targets Right Now’, Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley has Kuminga as a target for two young teams in the East.
The first of those is the Charlotte Hornets, a team looking to rise from a 27-55 record with the return of Miles Bridges and greater expected availability of All-Star guard LaMelo Ball. Still, as Buckley outlines, they’re still far enough away from contention to be interested in Kuminga.
"“Should Charlotte take a more future-focused approach, it could see a huge return on an investment in Kuminga, who might just need the developmental minutes the Golden State Warriors haven’t given him to establish himself as a rising, two-way star”, Buckley wrote."
The other team is one the Warriors have an incredibly recent trade history with. Kuminga wasn’t involved in the Jordan Poole-for-Chris Paul blockbuster trade that went down on draft day, but that doesn’t mean the Washington Wizards wouldn’t be interested in the 6’7″ forward should he become available.
"“Washington should also be identifying paths to prospects. The Wizards can commit to developing Kuminga or (Patrick) Williams in ways their current teams have not and may not for the foreseeable future”, Buckley summarized."
The Wizards have finally entered a rebuild this offseason, moving on from their two leading scorers from last season in Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis. They did also acquire Patrick Baldwin Jr. and Ryan Rollins in the Poole-Paul trade, but neither of those have the raw talent and potential that Kuminga possesses.
Whether the Hornets, Wizards or any other team are willing to give up enough value for Kuminga will likely be determined on how he begins next season, and if he can re-establish himself as a critical part of Golden State’s short and long-term future.