Golden State Warriors rookies Brandin Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis have thoroughly impressed in limited minutes this season, with the pair set to get more opportunity to push their claim for more time in Steve Kerr’s rotation.
The young duo have once again been reassigned to Golden State’s G League affiliate in Santa Cruz, with Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis set to get significant playing time in the season opener on Friday night.
Golden State Warriors rookies Brandin Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis will headline Santa Cruz’ G League opener against the Stockton Kings at Kaiser Permanente Arena.
The pair were assigned to Santa Cruz last week and subsequently missed Friday’s matchup with the Oklahoma City Thunder. They were quickly recalled however with veteran forward Draymond Green stating the team missed “the energy that they bring.”
With Green and Gary Payton II out against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday, both Podziemski and Jackson-Davis performed well in their respective minutes. The latter had eight points, two rebounds and was a +4 in just over 18 minutes, while Golden State’s first-round pick had five points, three rebounds, two assists and was a +8 in a little over 11 minutes.
Warrior veterans have “given their stamp of approval” on Podziemski and Jackson-Davis, according to a recent article from The Athletic’s Anthony Slater.
Jackson-Davis, in particular, could be ready for extended minutes in the Warrior rotation. The 23-year-old big man is averaging 4.3 points, 2.7 rebounds and 0.8 blocks in 9.1 minutes per game this season.
"“I love Trayce’s game. He’s going to be in the NBA a long, long time. He’s ready. He’s able right now, Klay Thompson said after the Nuggets loss. “What a steal we got late in the second. He’s going to be a huge help for us all year.”"
The G League opener will also provide playing time for two-way players Jerome Robinson, Usman Garuba and Lester Quinones, each have which have been unable to crack the Golden State rotation this season.
Warrior fans will also get another look at their latest contracted player, with Brazilian forward Gui Santos to spend the majority of his season with Santa Cruz. The 21-year-old was signed to the 14th roster spot earlier this week, agreeing to a multi-year deal with the franchise after being drafted 55th overall in 2022.
Santa Cruz will host the Salt Lake City Stars on Saturday afternoon in the second night of a back-to-back, with Podziemski and Jackson-Davis’ status to be determined given Golden State host the Cleveland Cavaliers at Chase Center that night.