Jonathan Kuminga's recent rise to stardom has garnered attention far beyond Golden State Warriors' fans, with the third-year forward starting to draw praise from media and analysts across the league.
Mike Breen and Doris Burke couldn't help but continually rave about the 21-year-old on the broadcast of Saturday night's thrilling win over the Phoenix Suns, and who could blame them as Kuminga helped himself to his 10th 20-point game in the last 13 outings.
Jonathan Kuminga's stature in the league continues to rise as more and more people take notice of the startling improvement in the Golden State Warriors' forward
Kuminga's emergence has begun to factor into various outlets -- he's exploded into fourth-favorite for the NBA's Most Improved Player award, having been crunched into +1000 odds with FanDuel Sportsbook after being +3400 less than a week ago.
Another signal of Kuminga's improvement came recently through The Ringer's Bill Simmons 2024 Trade Value Rankings. The decorated podcaster and writer noted the former lottery pick's last month, lifting him to 61st in the rankings.
"Number 61. This is dramatic. Jonathan Kuminga, who would've been 161 two months ago. You can feel this brewing...The last month he's been awesome...he's just tapping into all of his gifts -- he's one of the best athletes in the league, but he's also really competitive, so there's really something here now."- Bill Simmons
Kuminga's ability to get to the rim and finish with authority has been refreshing for a Warrior team that's been largely predicated on perimeter play during their dynasty years. There's an increased aggression to his game that's been remarkable, having emanated from his ascension to the team's second-best scorer.
Kuminga has averaged 23.5 points in the last 13 games, shooting an incredible 58.7% from the floor while adding 6.2 rebounds, 2.5 assists and over one steal per game. His ascent has been a huge factor in Golden State's resurgence as a team, with the franchise currently riding a four-game winning-streak and having gone 6-1 in their last seven.
Given this rate of improvement, one would expect Kuminga to take a further jump up Simmons' trade value rankings by 2025. Stephen Curry was the only other player in the top 75, ranked a surprisingly low 11th despite the 35-year-old's continued status as one of the league's best players.