Exceeding expectations: Brandin Podziemski
The Warriors have two rookies playing key rotation roles this season. They used the 19th overall pick on Podziemski, and he is currently sixth on the team in minutes per game. The 6’5 guard is averaging more playing time each night than Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody, Kevon Looney, and Dario Saric.
In his first extended opportunity, Podziemski dropped 23 points, seven rebounds, and five assists in a close loss to the Timberwolves on Nov. 14. It was clear from that moment that he deserved to be in the rotation, and head coach Steve Kerr has found minutes for the 20-year-old.
Podz is averaging 9.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 0.9 steals in 24.4 minutes per game. He is shooting 45.7 percent from the field and 39.1 percent on his threes, which is uncommon for a rookie guard. Podziemski has a 0.4 value over replacement player (VORP) through 34 games played and has produced 1.5 win shares.
Nobody expected Brandin Podziemski to be in the rotation at the start of the season. The 20-year-old rookie was buried on the depth chart behind the team’s guard and wing depth, but many of those players are not living up to expectations. It opened the door for Podziemski, and he took full advantage of his chance.