Grade the Trade: Warriors send disgruntled forward to Portland in latest mock deal

Jonathan Kuminga and Steve Kerr, Golden State Warriors
Jonathan Kuminga and Steve Kerr, Golden State Warriors / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages
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The Golden State Warriors are throwing everything at the wall and hoping it sticks.

This is a team with a lot of pride, and a lot of players with a ring (or four) on their finger. Yet this season they can't seem to get out of their own way. Andrew Wiggins has gone from 2022 NBA Finals hero to one of the worst rotation players in the league, absolutely cratering the Warriors when he takes the court. Draymond Green is getting suspended left and right. Kevon Looney and Klay Thompson have lost a step.

Yet Steve Kerr still can't commit to giving a long leash to the young players on this team. Brandin Podziemski has flashed into the starting lineup at times only to be pushed back down. Jonathan Kuminga earned a starting spot himself, but he all-too-often found himself riding the pine during crucial crunchtime possessions.

It's no wonder that Kuminga took his frustrations public, even if that is antithetical to the culture the Warriors have built over the years. He made it clear that he no longer trusted Steve Kerr to oversee his development as a player.

Jonathan Kuminga has lost faith in Steve Kerr

After the following game, Kuminga came out and said that he and Kerr had spoken and cleared the air, but one conversation isn't going to change a complete lack of faith. Kuminga got to a drastic place in regards to his coach and it will take time for that to change, no matter the message in front of the microphones. It doesn't help that Kuminga has since been moved out of the starting lineup.

Reporting in the days since has relayed that the Warriors are not interested in trading the 21-year-old. That could be true, but it could also be a negotiation ploy. If the Warriors do decide to move on from Kuminga, would they target a veteran star? Or could they pursue a player at a different position who is in a similar place in his career? Let's look at one such mock trade that illustrates the latter.