James Wiseman

Warriors Reject Sixers’ Offer Of Simmons For Wiseman, Wiggins, Picks

The Warriors rejected a trade proposal from the Sixers that would’ve sent Ben Simmons to Golden State for Andrew Wiggins, James Wiseman, the No. 7 and No. 14 picks in the draft, plus two future first-round picks, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer writes.

Golden State, who Pompey notes “basically assumed the Sixers’ offer as a joke,” is known to be open to discussing trades ahead of Thursday’s draft, but likely not for the price detailed above.

Pompey also confirmed a report from The Ringer that mentioned Philadelphia asked for four first-round picks, three first-round pick swaps, and a young player from the Spurs in exchange for Simmons. A league executive was cited in Pompey’s report calling the Sixers’ offers “totally outlandish” to this point.

Simmons, 25, is known for being one of the league’s top defenders and passers, but his shooting and half-court creation inconsistencies are well-documented. As of now, he and his camp remain “in step” with a potential trade during the offseason, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

Latest On Bradley Beal

Despite a pair of weekend reports suggesting that Wizards guard Bradley Beal is contemplating his future with the franchise, he has not yet requested a trade, according to multiple reports.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (video link) said on the Woj & Lowe special on ESPN on Sunday that Beal hasn’t asked the Wizards to be dealt; Fred Katz of The Athletic says there hasn’t been a demand, a request, or even a “timid suggestion” for a trade; and Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes that the All-NBA guard has remained in contact with the Wizards’ front office and has given the team no signs that he’s unhappy.

Previous reports from Bleacher Report and The Athletic suggested that Beal might make a decision on whether he wants to remain in D.C. before Thursday’s draft. A trade would be easier to put together before that draft, since it would allow potential suitors to offer 2021 picks and give the Wizards the opportunity to select the players they want with those picks.

However, Hughes cites one source who pushed back on the idea that Washington needs to decide its course within the next four days, pointing out that Beal is under contract next season and not every trade offer would center around 2021 draft picks.

One team whose offer would be heavy on 2021 picks is Golden State, and Wojnarowski (video link) views Beal as the primary target for the Warriors, who don’t seem inclined to get too involved in the Ben Simmons sweepstakes. If Beal isn’t made available via trade, Wojnarowski expects the Warriors to use their picks at No. 7 and No. 14 this Thursday.

Of course, even if Beal is available, there will be other teams in the mix besides Golden State, as ESPN’s Zach Lowe observes (video link). Lowe believes the Wizards would seek more than Andrew Wiggins, James Wiseman, and the Nos. 7 and 14 picks from Golden State in any Beal deal, suggesting that Washington would likely also ask for the Warriors’ 2026 first-rounder and a pick swap or two.

Here’s more on Beal:

  • Beal has always looked for reasons to stay in D.C. rather than to leave, according to Wojnarowski. “He loves that organization,” Woj said. “He loves that city.”
  • While the Wizards said Beal would have a say in the team’s head coaching search this offseason, the star guard was a little frustrated that his top pick for the job – Sixers assistant Sam Cassell – didn’t get a second interview, sources tell Katz. It’s unclear, however, if that will be a major factor in Beal’s decision on his future.
  • If Beal does request a trade, the Sixers, Heat, and Hawks are among the teams that could join the Warriors in the bidding, sources tell Katz. Hughes, meanwhile, suggests that the Warriors, Heat, Celtics, Trail Blazers, Lakers, and Mavericks are some of the clubs that would likely intrigue Beal.
  • The Thunder have made it known around the NBA that they’d be interested in participating in a Beal trade as a third team, according to Hughes.
  • The Wizards haven’t received any indication that their other star guard – Russell Westbrook – wants out of Washington, a team source tells Hughes.

Warriors’ Stars Pushing For Beal Trade

The Warriors’ star players are pushing management to acquire a top-level talent in pursuit of another championship, with Bradley Beal as the top target, Marcus Thompson of The Athletic reports.

The Warriors have the No. 7 and 14 picks in next week’s draft to dangle and would likely have to add more picks along with Andrew Wiggins‘ salary to make the salaries match. Golden State would prefer to keep last year’s No. 2 overall pick, James Wiseman, but it’s speculated that Washington would also want the young center as part of any package.

Of course, Beal has never indicated he wants to be traded and the Wizards have repeatedly said they’re not interested in dealing their high-scoring All-Star. In fact, Washington is hoping to sign Beal to another extension. His current one begins in 2021/22 — it’s a two-year deal worth $71.8MM with a player option in the second year.

Beal and the Wizards would need to have a change of heart quickly with the draft just a week away.

Golden State’s trio of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green has made it clear to the team’s front office it wants a player who can help the franchise make another serious run at a title.

Beal, who was chosen for Team USA but didn’t travel to Tokyo after entering health and safety protocols, is viewed as the ideal player for Golden State’s offense due to his scoring and play-making ability. That would ease the load on Curry, who edged Beal for the league scoring title this season.

Damian Lillard could also fit that mold, but multiple sources told Thompson it’s unlikely the Trail Blazers’ perennial All-Star would want to join the Warriors. Beal is preferred over Raptors star forward Pascal Siakam, another player rumored to be a potential trade target for the Warriors.

Warriors Notes: Thompson, Wiseman, Atkinson, Brown, Draft

Recovering Warriors sharpshooter Klay Thompson isn’t participating in full contact workouts yet, but he’s “starting to really get movement on the court,” head coach Steve Kerr told Anthony Slater of The Athletic. Thompson continues to rehab from an Achilles tear he suffered in November 2020.

“He’s still a ways away from actually playing basketball in a 5-on-5 setting,” Kerr said. “But there’s a big step with the Achilles when you can actually start running again. It’s a huge psychological boost. The rest of the body gets going, you start feeling the soreness and aches and pains that actually feel good when you’ve been out for a while. He’s at that point.”

Kerr addressed a few other topics of note during his conversation with Slater. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Coming off knee surgery that ended his rookie season, James Wiseman is “right on schedule for everything,” according to Kerr, who says the expectation is still that the young center will be ready for training camp.
  • Discussing the addition of Kenny Atkinson as an assistant coach, Kerr said he was worried about “groupthink” with the current staff and believes Atkinson will bring a new perspective to the group. “Very clever. Very analytically driven,” Kerr said of Atkinson. “We’ve had a lot of basketball conversations over the years and I’ve always been impressed with the way he sees and feels the game. In a way, it’s different from me.”
  • Mike Brown has been Kerr’s associate head coach for the last several years, making him the lead assistant on the staff. Atkinson has a claim to that role too, but neither coach is concerned about the title, according to Kerr. “I talked to Kenny about titles. He didn’t care. I talked to Mike, said I was interviewing Kenny and hadn’t talked title. Mike said, ‘I don’t care either,'” Kerr told Slater. “To me, they’re just both assistant coach. Both guys are comfortable in their own skin.”
  • Kerr said he isn’t as involved this year in scouting and evaluating draft prospects because of the Olympics and his commitment to Team USA, but he’s excited about what the Warriors will be able to do with the seventh and 14th overall picks. “Based on what I’ve watched on tape, I’ve seen a few guys who can play right now,” Kerr said. “You can go that route or go the younger route, get a prospect. Maybe you get one of each. Get one guy who is ready now and one guy who may pop in a few years. Who knows. But I think we’re in a really good position asset-wise to look at everything.”

Warriors Notes: Wiseman, Mitchell, Kuminga, Olympics

Watching the NBA Finals has given Warriors coach Steve Kerr hope that James Wiseman can develop like Suns center Deandre Ayton has, writes Drew Shiller of NBC Sports Bay Area. In a radio interview this week, Kerr compared his rookie big man to Ayton, who is one of the cornerstones on a title contender in his third year in the league.

“I’m just so inspired by what Ayton has been able to do. And I think there’s no reason why James can’t follow that same path,” Kerr said. “(The Suns) really streamlined his game. You think back a couple years ago and he was kind of all over the map. You could tell how gifted he was, but you weren’t exactly sure what he was. They’ve figured it out. I’m watching Ayton quite a bit and I’m thinking a lot about how we can use James and simplify the game and make him really effective for us next year.”

Wiseman was the second player taken in last year’s draft, but his adjustment to the NBA didn’t go smoothly. He averaged 11.5 points and 5.8 rebounds per night, but only played 39 games because of injuries before undergoing season-ending meniscus surgery in April. Kerr believes patience is the key to Wiseman’s ultimate success.

“I know everybody is impatient (and) wants him to be great now. It just doesn’t work that way,” he said. “But if we continue to develop him and we’re having a great season — that’s the whole plan, that’s the whole idea. Over the long haul, we’re gonna develop James and we feel like he’s gonna be our starting center at some point for a long, long time.”

There’s more on the Warriors:

  • Golden State hosted several top prospects this week, but the team still prefers to trade the Nos. 7 and 14 picks for a veteran who can contribute right away, sources tell Connor Letourneau of The San Francisco Chronicle. The Warriors brought in Davion Mitchell for a private workout on Thursday, and Letourneau hears that the front office is split on the Baylor guard, with some believing he can provide immediate help and others concerned that he’s too old at nearly 23 to justify a top-10 selection.
  • There’s speculation that Jonathan Kuminga could fall to No. 7, which James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area calls “a dream come true” for the Warriors in his latest mock draft. Although the 18-year-old is a raw talent, he could be groomed as a replacement for free agent forward Kelly Oubre or he may be an attractive target for teams that want to trade up.
  • NBA.com tracks the Warriors’ connections to the Olympic tournament, which will start next weekend. Draymond Green of Team USA and Nico Mannion of Italy will both be playing, while Kerr is an assistant for the U.S. and Mike Brown is the head coach of Nigeria.

Pacific Notes: Simmons, Wiseman, Green, Kerr

It’s unlikely the Kings could put together a trade package that would allow them to acquire Ben Simmons from the Sixers, according to James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. Philadelphia is seeking an All-Star caliber player for Simmons and Sacramento is unlikely to make Tyrese Haliburton or De’Aaron Fox available.

Ham speculates the Kings could try to package Buddy Hield, Marvin Bagley and the No. 9 overall pick or Harrison Barnes, Bagley and the same pick and see if Philadelphia would be interested.

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • The Warriors can take their cue from the Suns in order to get the most out of James Wiseman, Kendra Andrews of NBC Sports Bay Area writes. Deandre Ayton is a major reason why Phoenix advanced to the Finals, mainly due to the fact he’s become a prolific rebounder while getting fewer touches on offense. The Warriors need their bigs to thrive near the rim and help them get extra possessions, and that should be Wiseman’s main focus, Andrews adds.
  • Suns assistant Willie Green is reportedly a candidate for all three remaining head coaching jobs around the league and Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic takes a closer look at how Green would fit in with the Wizards, Pelicans and Magic. Green isn’t in a rush to get a head coaching job. “It’s definitely a goal, but I don’t feel like a need to chase that goal,” he said.
  • With Draymond Green playing for Team USA and Steve Kerr on the coaching staff, the Warriors could reap long-term benefits by building relationships with star players that could eventually land in Golden State, Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area speculates. The Olympics present a low-key method for franchises to recruit players, Poole adds.

Hollinger’s Latest: Draft, Wiseman, Siakam, Trent, Combine

Sources who have spoken to John Hollinger of The Athletic are skeptical that the Pistons, Rockets, or Cavaliers will trade out of the top three spots in the draft.

As Hollinger notes, there are a lot of teams that figure to have interest in moving up in the draft, including several holding multiple first-round picks, such as the Magic, Thunder, and Knicks. However, it’s more difficult to find teams that will give serious consideration to moving down. Any trade up may require a substantial overpay, Hollinger adds.

Here are a few more tidbits from Hollinger following his time at the pre-draft combine in Chicago:

Warriors Rumors: Wiseman, Payroll, Oubre, Curry

There’s an expectation among league personnel that the Warriors will consider shopping one or both of their lottery picks if they receive the Timberwolves’ first-round selection in tonight’s lottery, according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report. However, Fischer says the club has had no serious internal talks about the possibility of trading young center James Wiseman.

Appearing on The TK Show with Tim Kawakami of The Athletic, Warriors owner Joe Lacob confirmed that the Dubs aren’t looking to move Wiseman, stating that it’s “very unlikely” the club will entertain offers for the 20-year-old this offseason. While Lacob didn’t close the door entirely on the possibility, he said it would “take a lot” for Golden State to consider such a move, adding that the team would have to be blown away.

Discussing the decision to select Wiseman at No. 2 in last year’s draft over LaMelo Ball, among others, Lacob acknowledged that Ball had a great rookie season in Charlotte, but said that he remains confident Wiseman can be an “All-Star level player,” noting that nothing he saw in 2020/21 diminished that belief.

Here’s more on the Warriors:

  • In his interview with Kawakami, Lacob repeatedly mentioned the repeater tax penalties facing the Warriors going forward, stressing that it’s impractical for the team to continue increasing its payroll indefinitely. However, he didn’t rule out using Golden State’s taxpayer mid-level exception this offseason, and Fischer says there aren’t internal concerns about the club’s growing tax bill.
  • The Warriors have interest in retaining Kelly Oubre, but a sign-and-trade remains a viable possibility, according to Fischer, who reports that multiple Spurs players seem eager to add Oubre. Fischer also identifies the Mavericks as a team that may have interest in the veteran forward, citing sources who say Dallas approached the Warriors prior to the trade deadline about a deal involving Oubre and Kristaps Porzingis. It’s unclear whether the Mavs’ front office shakeup would affect their level of interest in Oubre, Fischer adds.
  • Asked by Kawakami about the possibility of a Stephen Curry extension this offseason, Lacob declined to speculate on whether a deal will get done, but stated that he expects the two-time MVP to spend the rest of his career with the Warriors, noting that both sides want that to happen.

Pacific Notes: Paul, Haliburton, Wiseman, George, Kings, Lakers

Suns guard Chris Paul entered the league’s health and safety protocols on Wednesday morning, and has been ruled out indefinitely pending his COVID-19 test results. With the Clippers defeating the Jazz on Saturday night to advance to the Western Conference Finals, head coach Monty Williams and the Suns are now preparing to enter their series against the Clippers without their star point guard.

While Williams wasn’t ready to give up on the idea of Paul playing, he is preparing to have to name another starter and Cameron Payne seems the likely replacement, writes Jovan Buha of The Athletic.

Cam has played with the starters a lot this year,” Williams said. “So it’s not anything that he hasn’t done or he’s not used to. So that part won’t change.”

Payne is coming off a breakout season following a strong performance in last year’s summer restart, and will soon face his biggest test as a pro.

I’m just getting ready like any other series,” said Payne, as reported by Arizona Republic’s Duane Rankin. “Just being ready to play when my name’s called. If I get an opportunity, I’m going to do everything I can to make sure I’m ready.”

We have more from around the Pacific Division:

  • Kings rookie guard Tyrese Haliburton is fully healthy and ready to begin his offseason training, he reported on a recent episode of JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast. Haliburton also underwent Lasik eye surgery to avoid needing contacts moving forward, according to James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area.
  • Former Warriors guard Leandro Barbosa weighs in on number two pick James Wiseman‘s rookie season, his struggles and his promise heading into year two, as covered by NBC Sports Bay Area’s Josh Schrock. “It’s complicated, but at the end of the day he’s a talent, he’s a guy that if he works, he’s going to be a very good player,” said Barbosa. “He’s able to do a bit of everything on the court. He’s just gotta understand the offense and the way we like to play.” Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area tweets that there’s still a chance Wiseman works out with Kevin Garnett this offseason, which was the plan before Wiseman suffered a knee injury. “It should still happen. For sure,” says Wiseman.
  • Paul George and the Clippers rallied following news of Kawhi Leonard‘s ACL injury, winning two straight games to advance to the Western Conference Finals. George, who hasn’t reached a Conference Finals since 2014, discussed the relief of getting past the second round, as tweeted by Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. “It was a special night,” George said. “You felt the monkey off of the Clippers’ back in terms of getting out of the second round.”
  • NBC Sports Bay Area’s James Ham discusses the Kings‘ hopes for a little extra luck during Tuesday’s draft lottery. He also suggests that if the Kings fail to move up (they have a 20% chance to jump into the top four), everyone will potentially be available for trades outside of De’Aaron Fox and Haliburton.
  • Following a season ravaged by injuries, the Lakers have decided not to renew the contract of their trainer, reports ESPN’s David McMenamin. Nina Hsieh was hired two years ago after being the head trainer for the Lakers’ G League team. McMenamin says to expect more changes as the Lakers continue to try to revamp their staff to focus on player health.

Ball, Edwards, Haliburton Head All-Rookie Team

LaMelo Ball, Anthony Edwards, Tyrese Haliburton, Jae’Sean Tate and Saddiq Bey comprised this year’s All-Rookie First Team, the NBA announced on Thursday in a press release.

Ball, who was named Rookie of the Year on Thursday, led first-year NBA players in assists (6.1 APG) and steals (1.59 SPG) and ranked second in scoring (15.7 PPG) and rebounding (5.9 RPG) for the Hornets. Edwards, the No. 1 pick in the draft by the Timberwolves, averaged a rookie-high 19.3 PPG.

The Kings’ Haliburton ranked third among rookies in scoring (13.0 PPG) and second in assists (5.3 APG). Bey, the 19th overall pick, made a rookie-high 175 three-pointers for the Pistons. Tate, who went undrafted in 2018 and played in Australia last season, averaged 11.3 PPG and 5.3 PPG for the Rockets.

Ball and Edwards were the only unanimous First Team selections, receiving 99 of 99 potential First Team votes. Haliburton got 98, while Bey had 63 and Tate received 57.

Knicks guard Immanuel Quickley narrowly missed out on the top five, having earned 51 votes for the First Team.

Here are both All-Rookie teams in full, with their voting point totals notes in parentheses. Players received two points for a First Team vote and one point for a Second Team vote.

2020/21 All-Rookie First Team:

2020/21 All-Rookie Second Team:

Nuggets guard Facundo Campazzo (42), Magic guard Cole Anthony (40), and Warriors center James Wiseman (24) were among the players who just missed the cut. Nine other players received votes — you can view the full voting results right here.