The Golden State Warriors need to draft a strong defensive player like Chris Singleton around whom they can build a new identity.
In recent years the consistently undersized Warriors have been out-physicalized by larger opposition, surrendering untold quantities of baskets and hopelessly trying to keep pace.
For the Warriors to succeed in 2011, they'll need to get bigger and play defense. It all starts with their draft choices.
Here are 10 great picks the Warriors should make in the upcoming NBA draft.
Trey Thompkins provides the low post scoring threat that the Warriors need.
At 6'10", 240 lbs, Thompkins is a versatile forward with strong rebounding and shot blocking skills. He can handle the ball well and is skilled around the basket.
Thompkins isn't the best athlete and lacks explosiveness. But he can be a solid contributor and a great value in the second round.
Greg Smith will be a big project for whoever takes him.
The Fresno State product has good athleticism for his size and the strength to be a solid low post player.
The problem is, he didn't significantly improve between his freshman and sophomore years, and has no perimeter game.
The Warriors need a physical center, and Smith could be a player to keep an eye on in the middle of the second round.
Jon Leuer is another big man who could fall to the Warriors in the second round.
Leuer has a great outside shot and fabulous range on his jumper. His high basketball IQ and good ball handling skills make him dangerous off the dribble.
Like Thompkins, Leuer isn't particularly quick. He's also a sub-par rebounder for his size.
But if he were perfect, he wouldn't be available in the second round.
Klay Thompson is one of the best shooters in this year's draft.
The 21-year-old is incredibly savvy and knows his own game well. He is sneakily athletic with his large wingspan and can get to the rim when defenders sleep on him.
At 6'7", Thompson can play either shooting guard or small forward. The Warriors could elect to put him at guard, which would increase the size of their backcourt.
This plan would work best if Golden State could line up a trade for Monta Ellis that would net a big power forward or center.
While most people are certain Bismack Biyombo is a large, athletic center, very few are confident they know his age.
He says he is 18, but rumors have circulated that he could be as old as 26. Most agree he is somewhere between 18-20.
Biyombo relies on fierce physical play to dominate on defense. His wingspan and hustle make him a terrific rebounder on both ends of the floor.
The Congolese center is very raw offensively. His passing and inside shooting both leave a lot to be desired, and his slow reactions show his lack of experience.
Biyombo could have a bright future ahead of him, but needs at least a couple years to develop his game. He could be a surprise pick by the Warriors, but wouldn't be the best fit for a team that needs impact players now.
If the Warriors can't grab the Washington State guard, they might want to take a look at the other Thompson.
Tristan Thompson played power forward for the Texas Longhorns last year, and used his length and energy to make plays on both ends of the floor.
Thompson has great hands in traffic and is a fabulous offensive rebounder. He establishes his position early and can seal defenders effectively.
At 6'9", Thompson is on the short side for a power forward. A conversion to small forward is impractical because his game limits him as a four or five, ultimately decreasing his value to a Golden State team needing size.
Marcus Morris is a versatile 6'8" forward who plays well from the field and at the post.
He has great balance and ball skills, and often utilizes his excellent touch to drain fadeaway jumpers.
Morris' awareness makes him devastating around the rim, as he constantly adjusts to defenders' positioning to create opportunities for himself.
The Warriors should be very interested in Morris' high defensive intensity and work ethic, two traits that easily become contagious on the floor.
Donatas Motiejunas is one of the more intriguing players in this year's draft.
The 20-year-old Lithuanian has very polished footwork and mechanics and plays with incredible confidence.
A full seven feet tall, he is a mismatch nightmare for opposing defenses. He plays well inside, and has a strong long-range jumper.
Motiejunas isn't the toughest big man, and his only real defensive skill is his shot contesting. Most of the time he seems simply uninterested in playing defense and doesn't like to get physical.
The Warriors would need to be confident they can improve Motiejunas' defensive presence and rebounding if they are considering him in the first round.
It would be hard for the Golden State Warrios to pass up Jan Vesely if he's still on the board at the 11th pick.
Vesely is the Czech Energizer Bunny, working as hard as possible and never slacking off. He is explosive off the ball and attacks the rim.
He is defensively sound, with surprisingly quick lateral movement for his size and good instincts off the glass. His huge wingspan helps him get in the way of passing lanes and block any shot in his range.
Vesely lacks some polish, as he generally relies on his hustle to be successful. But the tools and passion are there for a dominant big man.
Chris Singleton is the defensive presence the Warriors need to get out of the draft.
Singleton's athleticism and fantastic instincts make him one of the biggest defensive threats in this year's class.
His great anticipation helps him jump into passing lanes to disrupt opposing possessions, and his size, length and superior jumping ability make him a top shot-blocker. The combination is almost unfair.
Singleton will need to establish a stronger offensive game if he wants to succeed at the NBA level. But his suffocating defense is exactly what the Warriors need right now.