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Golden State Warriors 2011 Draft: Why Trading Monta Ellis Would Be a Mistake

Trade rumors swirl around the talented Warrior SG
Trade rumors swirl around the talented Warrior SGEzra Shaw/Getty Images
Pacifica SlugContributor IJune 23, 2011

Welcome to the first non-Cohan Golden State Warriors draft since 1995!  Warrior fans are cautiously hopeful after the door hit Cohan's backside and opened for a new ownership group led by Joe Lacob and Peter Gruber.  

Since assuming control, the Warrior ownership have added guru Jerry West and let go of public enemy number two, Robert Rowell.  

With these moves, Warrior fans are expecting big moves to shake up a team that struggled defensively and with rebounding. Most pundits have budding star Monta Ellis leaving via trade to move up in the draft, or the Warriors staying put at 11.

For those that think trading Ellis is the way to go, consider what the Warriors offense would be like without him slashing to the hoop and kicking out?  Who would take that role?  Curry? Wright? Biedriens? Udoh?  

This would be a monumental mistake and would make the Warriors worse.

Nobody creates space and draws double teams like Ellis. He is a premier scorer and creator. Curry and Wright won't see the same wide open looks if you take him out of that offense.

Now if you are talking about changing the offense to a low/high post oriented offense, then a trade might make sense.

One last argument against a trade is that this year's draft is thin. Moving up to take someone might not return as much value this year compared to next. Most fans can only see the upcoming year in front of them so their "moves" are usually short sighted to making a championship run this season.  

The Warriors might be looking for solid depth with the 11th pick, knowing they will be trading into a stronger, deeper draft next year.

Lastly, the Warriors may look to relieve some salary burden by staying at 11, or even moving down if the person they want might be available at picks 14-17.  

Most Warrior drafts are usually filled with head-scratching and angst as they have consistently put up stinkers a la 1995 (When the Warriors drafted Joe Smith over Antonio McDyess, Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace, and Kevin Garnett) or 1996 (when the Warriors drafted Todd Fuller instead of Kobe Bryant, Peja Stojakovic, and Steve Nash).

My expectations will be that the Warriors will make the smart move. We will see if that means staying put, or making a splash.

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