The Warriors have an Andrew Wiggins problem that will only get worse

After this past season, it is increasingly obvious that Golden State has a big problem involving Wiggins.
Andrew Wiggins, Golden State Warriors
Andrew Wiggins, Golden State Warriors / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

The Golden State Warriors have put together one of the greatest runs of success in the modern era of the NBA under Stephen Curry. For over a decade, the player that evolved into the greatest shooter of all time has guided this franchise to becoming a perennial winner and has completely changed how the game of basketball is played in the process.

But still, the Warriors have not been without their own unique challenges under Steph's tutelage. When Kevin Durant left the team and Klay Thompson tore his ACL in 2019, Golden State was left in an impossibly difficult situation. Their roster was severely lacking, and extending the dynasty run became a bigger hill to climb than ever before.

Fast forward to four games into the 2019-20 season, and Curry's wrist injury would throw yet another wrench into the Warriors' plans. That season quickly became what seemed to be a lost cause, and indeed Golden State finished with an abysmal 15-50 record before the season was ultimately suspended due to Covid-19.

But one big development occurred at the trade deadline that year that would lead to a lot of positives for the Warriors down the road. In February, the front office orchestrated a trade for Andrew Wiggins with the Minnesota Timberwolves, giving them a very solid rotation wing to utilize more heavily once the rest of their roster returned to full health.

Andrew Wiggins' usefulness is deteriorating for the Warriors

The next season and especially the season after, Wiggins would become massively important to Golden State's process. In the 2021-22 season, his production at both ends of the floor was so solid, he earned his first career All-Star appearance. Incredibly, even with Klay Thompson back on the hardwood, Andrew was the Warriors' second-best player in the Finals that season as well.

Wiggins was rightfully celebrated for his accomplishments in 2022, seeing how he escaped the narrative that he was somehow a 'losing player.' But since that year, things have slowly become more disappointing for the former number one overall pick. Personal troubles have caused him to miss time, and his overall production has slipped. This past season, he registered a negative VORP (Value Over Replacement Player).

Combine that with his contract situation where Wiggins is still owed over $84 million over the next three seasons, and the Warriors have a big dilemma on their hands. They simply can not afford to keep paying a guy who is not bringing winning contributions to the floor every night, regardless of his past success.

This situation only further complicates the Warriors' roster problem. As of right now, they very clearly have a long way to go before they have anything resembling a championship-level roster once again. Having Andrew Wiggins perform like he has the last two seasons is simply not going to cut it.