Warriors Rumors: Latest Buzz on Andrew Wiggins, Onyeka Okongwu, More

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxFeatured ColumnistMay 19, 2020

Golden State Warriors Andrew Wiggins (22) looks to make a pass as Denver Nuggets Will Baton lll (5) defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, March 3, 2020 in Denver (AP Photo/John Leyba)
John Leyba/Associated Press

History may look back on the Golden State Warriors as one of the most dominant dynasties in league history. However, that dynasty took a bit of a break during the 2019-20 season. Plagued by injuries, the Warriors have stumbled to a league-worst 15-50 record. The good news is that things are set to get right back on track next season.

For starters, the Warriors should have a healthy Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry in the lineup for 2020-21. They have a third star in Draymond Green and just might have a fourth Andrew Wiggins, who has averaged 21.8 points, 5.1 rebounds and 3.7 assists this season.

That is, if the Warriors don't plan to use the 2014 first overall pick as a trade chip. After all, Golden State added D'Angelo Russell last year, only to move him before the trade deadline.

Considering the Warriors received Wiggins, a protected 2021 first-round pick and a 2021 second-rounder out of the deal—the Warriors also sent Jacob Evans and Omari Spellman to the Minnesota Timberwolves—it's hard to argue with the results.

According to The Athletic's Anthony Slater, however, the Warriors do not plan to use Wiggins as trade bait in the offseason:

"Ask anyone in the organization—during their private or public moments—they got Wiggins with the expectation that he'll be their starting small forward next season, not just a matching contract to flip (like they did with Russell)."

So, while Wiggins isn't going to make fans forget what having a healthy Kevin Durant was like, he will help provide Golden State with one of the better cores in the Western Conference. That core could include the No. 1 pick in this year's draft.

The draft lottery has been postponed, but it is expected to utilize the same format it did last year—with the top four draft slots determined by lottery pick. As one of the bottom-three teams, Golden State is in line to have a 14 percent shot at No. 1.

The unknown is who the Warriors might take if they do end up with the top selection. NBL standout LaMelo Ball has been a popular top-four candidate this year. Memphis' James Wiseman is an intriguing target for teams in need of a big man, as is Dayton's Obi Toppin.

According to Connor Letourneau of the San Francisco Chronicle, though, the Warriors instead have their sights set on USC's Onyeka Okongwu:

"Believe it or not, the Warriors are actually higher on Southern Cal's Okongwu than James Wiseman. If they end up taking a big man in the top five, it'll almost definitely be the 6-foot-9 Okongwu. His game is well-suited for the Warriors' style. Unlike Wiseman, Okongwu can shuttle between multiple positions with ease."

Okongwu's ability to play multiple roles would indeed benefit Golden State as it rotates lineup configurations. As for Ball? He may already be destined to land across the country and in New York.

"Some league sources believe the Ball camp will try to steer the 18-year-old point guard to the Knicks, though such a maneuver will seem difficult if Leon Rose's club doesn't rise into the top four in the lottery," Marc Berman of the New York Post wrote Thursday.

While Ball would be an intriguing option as a second-team point guard and rotational scorer, he may not be a serious possibility for Golden State.