This season, the Golden State Warriors are proving to be one of the best teams in basketball. Thanks to the heroics of Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins, they have been near unstoppable in every way, and find themselves in title contention once again
What is most impressive about their performance so far is that it has come without two key players: Klay Thompson and James Wiseman, who have yet to play a game this season. Wiseman, specifically, brings size, strength, and talent to the frontcourt that they haven't seen in a long time.
And, apparently, they almost didn't draft him.
According to team GM Bob Myers, the Warriors took a hard look at LaMelo Ball before eventually settling on Wiseman instead. While it is not a decision they have come to regret, it certainly speaks volumes to the level of talent Ball and Wiseman have shown so far in their careers.
"We targeted James [Wiseman,] obviously we took him in front of LaMelo [Ball}," Warriors GM Bob Myers said on The Ryen Russillo Podcast. "We debate everything ... we're pretty debate-oriented. It's not just me in a room saying 'this is what we're doing' and then I shut the door. We hashed out the whole thing as far as what we thought. We ended up ranking it the way we did. We watched LaMelo, he had a great workout when we saw him. We knew he would be a really good player, but we ended up putting James in front of him."
Ball, 20, has shown amazing potential as a scorer in the league, averaging 20.3 points, 8.1 assists, and 7.6 rebounds per game 42.7% shooting. The Hornets, who have been a struggling franchise for years, are in a respectable position in the East with a 16-15 record overall.
With the Warriors, who knows what the kid would have been capable of.
But it's hard to say Myers went wrong with Wiseman. While maybe not as statistically impressive as Ball, the young stud has shown flashes of stardom.
He'll be an important piece for Golden State moving forward, and it's clear that the team has a strong belief in his abilities.