Warriors' rookie makes another statement as center conundrum continues

Golden State Warriors v Milwaukee Bucks
Golden State Warriors v Milwaukee Bucks / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages

The Golden State Warriors' hot form continued on Monday night in Utah, with the franchise recording their seventh win in eight games thanks to a 129-107 blowout win against the Jazz at Delta Center.

It was a high-level offensive performance from the Warriors who had eight players score in double digits. Klay Thompson (26) and Stephen Curry (25) led the way, while Andrew Wiggins (17) and Jonathan Kuminga (14) each had their moments in another dominant display.

Almost everyone contributed in one way or another, but the most notable performance may have come from Trayce Jackson-Davis who had an instant impact when injected into the game in the second-half.

Trayce Jackson-Davis' performance against the Utah Jazz suggests he should be a full-time part of the Golden State Warriors' rotation

Since Draymond Green's return and the veteran's insertion to the starting center spot, Jackson-Davis has seen his minutes decline over recent weeks. Entering Monday's game against the Jazz, the rookie big man had played less than 13 minutes over the last four games, which included a DNP against the Brooklyn Nets last Monday.

Jackson-Davis' reduced playing time hasn't been a huge fault of his own, but rather a reflection of the Golden State roster and their various options. With Steve Kerr confirming Green as primarily a five-man nowadays, and with veteran's Kevon Looney and Dario Saric needing playing time, the squeeze has been on.

As was the case on Saturday against the Phoenix Suns, Jackson-Davis saw second-half playing time after being out of the rotation completely in the first-half. Coming up against a lengthy Jazz lineup, the 23-year-old gave a timely reminder of his capabilities with 11 points (4-of-4 shooting), four rebounds and a block in just over nine minutes.

It wasn't anything we didn't already know, but just more of all the strengths Jackson-Davis has already shown he brings to the table. His threat as a roller is an element the Warriors don't otherwise have on the roster, having combined on multiple occasions with the perimeter threats of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.

Jackson-Davis uses that athleticism to be the sort of rim protector that Looney and Saric simply can't, which ultimately helped Golden State limit Utah to a miserly 98.1 offensive rating in the second-half.

The 57th overall pick was a +14 in his limited playing time, and is now +53 in 506 minutes on the season -- that ranks sixth on the team behind five players, three of which have played in excess of double the minutes, and another two who've played at least 721 minutes.

Golden State have had more success leaning into their youth this season, specifically through Kuminga and Brandin Podziemski. It's time the Warriors do the same with Jackson-Davis, even if it means that Looney or Saric start receiving DNP's of their own across the latter portion of the season.

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