Jonathan Kuminga's form further cementing Golden State Warriors trade plans

Atlanta Hawks v Golden State Warriors
Atlanta Hawks v Golden State Warriors / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages

Despite going through one of the most traumatising periods in franchise history over the last week, Jonathan Kuminga picked up right where he left off in the Golden State Warriors first game since the tragic passing of assistant coach Dejan Milojević.

Despite returning to the bench over recent games, the third-year forward had increased his production with a 24-point outing in Chicago, a career-high 28 points against the Milwaukee Bucks, and a 20-point, 11-rebound double-double in Memphis.

With the Warriors honoring Milojevic with an emotional tribute pre-game, Kuminga proved the star of the show on the floor as the 21-year-old wrote his way into Golden State and NBA history books.

Whatever the Golden State Warriors do before the February 8 trade deadline, it looks more and more unlikely to include Jonathan Kuminga

Kuminga had 25 points on a perfect 11-of-11 shooting, equalling Chris Mullin's franchise record for most made field-goals without a miss. He also became the youngest player in NBA history to have 25 points on 100% shooting, yet was far from just a scoring threat by also adding nine rebounds, two assists, two steals and two blocks.

The former lottery pick's future at the franchise had come under speculation given Golden State's struggles, not to mention his reported lack of faith in head coach Steve Kerr from earlier in the month.

But despite the up-and-down nature of his career to date, Kuminga's now in career-best form and is reinforcing the fact the Warriors simply can't give him up over the next fortnight. On one hand the recent form would only be increasing his trade value among rival teams, but on the other it would be insanity to move on now just as he comes into his own.

It may have been unlikely that Kuminga was going to be traded regardless, but four consecutive 20+ point games has all but solidified his place as a long-term piece of the franchise. So too did the Pascal Siakam trade to the Indiana Pacers, leaving little in the way of established talent that you'd actually consider giving Kuminga up for.

Should the Warriors give up Kuminga in a deal for Kyle Kuzma, Dejounte Murray or Jerami Grant? Maybe the latter at an absolute stretch, but even then it's debatable and reports suggest the Trail Blazers are resistant to giving up Grant anyway.

If Kuminga is all but certain to remain a Warrior past the deadline, then it practically cements what the franchise is able to do. No big-name, multi-time All-Star is on the horizon without the former seventh overall pick being included, leaving Golden State to see what they can get with a pair of future first-round picks.

The major question regarding Kuminga should move from if he's going to be traded or not, to whether he can regain a starting role on the back of the best four-game stretch of his career.