Despite their robust experiences and Hall of Fame talents, the Warriors are under .500 after the first 20 games of the 2023-24 NBA season – a shocker considering Golden State was two wins away from an NBA Finals trip in May.
With concerns about the Warriors’ current standing, Hall of Famer Paul Pierce chimed in on Showtimes’ “KG Certified” with Kevin Garnett, describing what Golden State must do to save its window for contention this year.
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“You got to make a trade,” Pierce told Garnett. “I still believe in Steph [Curry]. I believe in Draymond [Green], that you can still build around them if you get the right pieces, that they can win a championship. But you’ve got to make some moves. As currently constructed, [Golden State] is barely a playoff team.”
Pierce believes aging Warriors like Curry and Green can bring another NBA title to Chase Center, but the longtime Boston Celtics forward feels Golden State’s role players are not on the same level.
In particular, Pierce blames the Warriors’ recent struggles on past moves that he claims to have not worked out as intended.
“Golden State, it’s on them, but it’s also on the players that they brought in. Like, think about this. What if [James] Wiseman had turned into what they needed him to turn into? Jordan Poole? [Jonathan] Kuminga and [Andrew] Wiggins? They were supposed to keep the dynasty going. But they didn’t pan out like [the Warriors] thought they would. Wiggins is supposed to be giving you what Klay [Thompson] is giving you now.”
Golden State Warriors
Wiggins is six years younger than Thompson but is averaging 2.9 fewer points per game while shooting a poor 26.7 percent on 3-pointers, which is 9.4 percent worse than the four-time champion.
And Wiseman and Poole are struggling at their own rates on the Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards, respectively.
Kuminga, however, remains a promising prospect, averaging 11 points per game this season at only 21 years old.
Regardless, the Warriors’ supporting cast is subpar overall.
If Golden State can’t turn things around quickly, first-year general manager Mike Dunleavy could consider making a trade like Pierce suggests.