Golden State Warriors 2021 NBA Draft Grades For Both Picks
Thursday night’s NBA Draft produced quite a few winners throughout the evening. Conversely, there was also a fair share of players and teams who did not do quite as well. As for the Golden State Warriors, it’s easy to see that this team had an excellent night and that they came out as one of the biggest winners of the draft.
The Warriors had two lottery picks heading into draft night, and they made sure to make their selections count. They scooped up Jonathan Kuminga with the seventh overall pick, followed by Moses Moody at No. 14. You have to commend Golden State for their overall performance in the draft and here’s why.
Warriors NBA Draft grades
No. 7 (via Timberwolves): Jonathan Kuminga (Guard, NBA G League Ignite)
2020-21 Stats: 15.8 points (38.7 percent shooting), 7.2 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.2 three-pointers
The fact that Jonathan Kuminga fell all the way to seventh is already a huge victory for the Warriors. Some mock drafts had the 18-year-old going in the Top 5, so when the Dubs realized that he was still available when it was their time on the board, they pounced. There’s no denying that Kuminga can still be considered as a raw talent and that his selection entails a significant risk for the Warriors. However, this is probably one of those cases wherein a prospect was too good to pass up for the Dubs.
Kuminga is one of the most talented youngsters in his class and his explosiveness and athleticism certainly give him an edge over fellow prospects. However, as described by Warriors assistant general manager Larry Harris, the final piece that sold them on this young man was his attitude:
“[But] then really what kind of sells us — character and IQ matter,” Harris said on a recent interview, via Drew Shiller of NBC Sports. “So just sitting down with him [and] getting to know who he was for a two-and-a-half-hour dinner — where he’s just by himself with us — the real true character shows up.
“We were impressed with how driven he was, how he was able to carry himself. … He was impressive.”
If you think about it, these draft prospects are the most gifted players in the entire nation at their age. Talent-wise, most of them have what it takes to thrive in the NBA. However, as in the case of Kuminga, there’s always more to it than just being good with a basketball.
No. 14: Moses Moody (Guard, Arkansas)
2020-21 Stats: 16.8 points (42.7 percent shooting), 5.8 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.8 three-pointers
Things didn’t exactly turn out as planned for the Warriors for their second pick of the evening. According to reports, the Dubs had a keen eye on Chris Duarte for their No. 14 pick, only to be thwarted by the Indiana Pacers, who themselves snagged the Oregon guard just one spot before Golden State.
Be that as it may, the Warriors “settled” on Arkansas guard Moses Moody. Make no mistake about it, though, the 6-foot-6 guard is no scrub and he’s definitely not a bad Plan B for the Warriors. Moody, the winner of last season’s SEC Freshman of the Year award, has the potential to be an excellent 3-and-D talent for Golden State for years to come. You could even argue that he should have been a Top 10 pick.
According to Moody’s Arkansas coach, Eric Musselman, he has no doubt that Moody possesses the necessary tools to fit in with the Warriors:
“He’s going to fit in well with those guys,” Musselman told Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area by phone Thursday night. “He’s another long shooter, spaces the floor, understands his role, great teammate. Veterans will like him.
“He’s also serious-minded, a really good guy, and I know that matters to the people at Golden State.”
In the end, it looks like it all worked out for the Dubs. Despite a few bumps and a couple of surprises here and there, the Warriors have emerged as one of the biggest winners of Thursday’s draft.