Steph sees ‘beast' in Wiseman during Warriors scrimmage


The Warriors owned just about every statistical category Thursday night in their 132-95 trouncing of the Portland Trail Blazers. They shot better than the Blazers from the field and the 3-point line, they had more assists, fewer turnovers and had more steals. They even owned the glass. 

Golden State grabbed 46 rebounds, compared to 31 by the Blazers. The Warriors had 10 offensive rebounds and held Portland to just six. Jusuf Nurkic being out at least four weeks with a foot injury certainly helped the Warriors have an advantage on the glass. 

The 7-footer was averaging 11.1 rebounds per game this season. On Thursday, shooting guard Josh Hart led the Blazers with six rebounds. Kevon Looney and Co. had to be happy boxing out Blazers not named Nurkic. 

And now, the Warriors have their own 7-footer joining them in 20-year-old James Wiseman, who is expected to make his season debut soon. Wiseman made the trip to Portland and scrimmaged on Wednesday night at the end of a two-hour practice. 

His size, to no surprise, stood out. 

"He's a beast when you look at him on the floor, especially with the rest of our team," Steph Curry said Thursday night. "With how quote, unquote undersized we are, he does stand out and can do some amazing things." 

Coach Steve Kerr said Wednesday night that Wiseman looked good during the scrimmage. He described the young big man as "moving well and feeling good." 

Wiseman threw down a strong put-back dunk, and Curry liked what he saw. 

"He looked good," Curry said. "It's weird, because it was like that rusty first post-All-Star break scrimmage where the overall game was pretty sloppy, but he had a lot of good energy. He got that put-back dunk and is just kind of chomping at the bit to get to the next step of his return to play schedule."

While Wiseman still is listed as day-to-day and there is no set date on when he'll make his return, that day will be welcome. Looney, 6-foot-9, is the Warriors' only true center and has played in every game this season. He could use the help. Nemanja Bjelica is 6-foot-9, but isn't even paying rent in the pain. Otto Porter Jr. is a strong rebounder at 6-foot-8, but his role just isn't bullying his way on the block. Rookie Jonathan Kuminga, 6-foot-8, has played a significant amount of time as a small-ball center this season as of late.

RELATED: Warriors display depth in dominant win out of the break

Wiseman is a legit 7-foot with a 7-foot-6 wingspan, and he has added a noticeable amount of muscle during his rehab. With a handful of games left against star big men, including two more against Nikola Jokic and one more against Giannis Antetokounmpo, Wiseman's mere presence will be a blessing for the Warriors. 

All signs have been nothing but positive, onwards and upwards lately with Wiseman. It has to be a sigh of relief after nearly a year away from the game, and it doesn't hurt he perfectly fits what the Warriors need on the court.

Download and follow the Dubs Talk Podcast

Contact Us