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Predicted Golden State Warriors starting 5 for the 2020-21 NBA season

Klay Thompson - 2019 NBA Finals Game 6
Klay Thompson - 2019 NBA Finals Game 6
Kunal Sethi
ANALYST
Modified 20 Nov 2020, 23:33 IST
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After Klay Thompson tore the ACL in his left knee during the 2019 NBA Finals and Stephen Curry fractured his hand in October 2019, the Golden State Warriors planned a strategic year off.

They smartly decided not to waste their resources by fighting for victories. The Warriors wanted their star guards to heal properly, get a lottery pick, and make a major comeback in the 2020-21 season.

Everything was going according to plan, and many considered the injuries as a blessing in disguise. The Golden State Warriors were projected to be a title contender with a healthy duo of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, and the world of sports was eagerly waiting for the Dubs' redemption season.

However, the Warriors' title hopes might have come to a premature end, as Klay Thompson reportedly tore the Achilles in his right leg during a pickup game in Southern California and could miss the entire season.

With that in mind, let's take a look at the potential starting 5 for the Golden State Warriors.


Golden State Warriors new starting 5 without Klay Thompson

Stephen Curry and Andrew Wiggins
Stephen Curry and Andrew Wiggins

Even with Klay Thompson out of the 2020-21 season, many analysts still aren't giving up on the Warriors. Although they might no longer be the top seed, the belief is that a healthy Stephen Curry and Draymond Green might lead the team to one of the playoff spots.

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With the 2nd overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, the Golden State Warriors select James Wiseman

James Wiseman
James Wiseman

With a newly drafted James Wiseman, the Golden State Warriors have their bonafide center and rim protector.

Throughout the history of the NBA, guard-center duos have successfully dominated the league.

From the 1960s to the more recent 2000s, duos of Bob Cousy - Bill Russell, Magic Johnson - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kobe Bryant - Shaquille O'Neal all saw major success.

And even if some duos like Allen Iverson - Dikembe Mutumbo and Steve Nash - Amare Stoudemire didn't win titles, they still dominated the regular season and the early stages of playoffs.

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Although it is premature to say so, if Stephen Curry and James Wiseman develop that sort of a relationship, the Warriors might not be as much in trouble after all.


Golden State Warriors acquire Kelly Oubre Jr. from the OKC Thunder

Kelly Oubre Jr. playing for the Phoenix Suns
Kelly Oubre Jr. playing for the Phoenix Suns

The Golden State Warriors recently used their $17.2 million trade exception and acquired Kelly Oubre Jr. from the OKC Thunder for a protected 2021 first-round pick. The decision to trade for Oubre Jr. came after the report of Klay Thompson's injury.

Although Kelly Oubre Jr. and Andrew Wiggins play the same position, ESPN's new depth chart has Andrew Wiggins starting as a shooting guard while Oubre Jr. retains his position as a small forward.

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The Golden State Warriors play a positionless, fast-paced style of play, so traditional positions don't have much meaning and we might see Wiggins and Oubre rotate for the same forward position. Damion Lee is a projected starting guard as well, but he is likely to come off the bench with the addition of Kelly Oubre Jr. to the lineup.

With Draymond Green and Stephen Curry in their usual positions, the potential starting 5 for the Golden State Warriors ahead of the 2020-21 season looks like this:

  1. Point Guard - Stephen Curry
  2. Shooting Guard - Andrew Wiggins
  3. Small Forward - Kelly Oubre Jr.
  4. Power Forward - Draymond Green
  5. Center - James Wiseman

Although the absence of Klay Thompson is a major blow for the Warriors, the new starting 5 might see success after all.


Published 20 Nov 2020, 23:33 IST
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