By the time the Golden State Warriors drafted Memphis big man James Wiseman, the Vegas odds for them winning a championship had dropped tremendously with news of Klay Thompson suffering a right leg injury during a workout.
The NBA’s worst case scenario came true when it was discovered that the injury was a devastating Achilles tear, an injury that definitely puts Klay’s future in jeopardy considering he was returning from a torn ACL suffered in the 2019 playoffs.
MORE: Klay Thompson will miss the season with a torn Achilles 😔
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) November 19, 2020
It’s not that Wiseman isn’t dope at what he does, but with Klay out for the season, the needs of the team dramatically change.
As rumors regarding the severity of Klay’s injury started making its way through the social media moshpit, criticism of Golden State’s choice of Wiseman started surfacing, despite the enthusiasm that a lot of hoop experts showed for the pick.
"I think Golden State got themselves a really good, young player to transition forward as the big three winds down great careers"
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) November 19, 2020
And after a few drinks, most Golden State fans started looking at the best-case scenario.
James Wiseman couldn’t have ended up in a better situation. He doesn’t need to be the best player on his team. Basketball will be easy for him playing next to Steph Curry. pic.twitter.com/L5bxDa87DP
— Hoops Supply (@hoopssupply) November 19, 2020
With Klay laid up, Dub Nation is down an all-time great shooter and Wiseman’s size, defensive skills, raw offensive game and potential are not going to immediately impact a team constructed to win now. Wiseman still has some developing to do and wasn’t expecting to have to carry a huge load on that end of the floor.
Thompson’s absence severely compromises Golden State’s perimeter shooting, which is the staple of their success. Then as Jason Williams mentioned today on ESPN, how will Wiseman and Draymond Green fit? They are the same type of player.
Klay’s absence creates a cornucopia of question and causes some real problems for coach Steve Kerr’s winning system.
Missing On Melo
Overlooking Melo Ball might turn out to be a mistake for Golden State. With Klay sidelined, the Warriors could plug a playmaking scorer like Melo Ball in and not lose as much offensively. Kerr would also be allowed to play an offense similar to the one Dub Nation is accustomed to.
A player of Melo Ball’s basketball intelligence and passing ability could also open up the floor for Andrew Wiggins to do what he does. Wiggins only shoots 34 percent from three but he can get you 20 points.
Wiseman was going to be a perfect fit with Klay 100 percent healthy. Now, it seems Golden State will become a squad searching for an identity, accepting the fact that the entire foundation of their success, the Splash Brothers, may never give opposing squads aerial nightmares at the same level again.
Wiseman will have to develop at a much quicker rate than previously expected. Can he do it?