The Golden State Warriors fans are very excited for the next season for a very palpable reason. After sustaining serious long term injuries, the superstar duo of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson will be back for the franchise, something that would instantly elevate the franchise into title contenders. Despite the good news on that front, the roster has a lot of weaknesses. To address the same, the Warriors will look towards the NBA Free Agency 2020 for solutions. In this regard, one of the players heavily linked with the franchise this off-season is Dwight Howard.
The 34-year-old veteran was a key player for the LA Lakers in the franchise's run to the NBA Championship last season as he provided big minutes off the bench.
Despite his age, Howard's athleticism has hardly reduced; the player is arguably playing better now than he did in the last few years. Considering the fact that one of the Golden State Warriors' biggest weaknesses is its position of center, NBA trade rumors have linked the franchise with the player.
On that note, let us have a look at three reasons why the Golden State Warriors must go after Dwight Howard this off-season.
NBA Free Agency 2020: Three reasons why the Golden State Warriors should target Dwight Howard this off-season
For this list, we have made an assumption that Kevon Looney will be the starting center for the Golden State Warriors, and Dwight Howard would do a similar role with the Warriors as the one he did with the LA Lakers. Without further ado, let's get started.
#1 Added defense and rim protection
The Golden State Warriors may still be an elite team at the offensive end, but it is worrying how light they are in defense. While players like Klay Thompson and Draymond Green could shore up the outside defense over time, the franchise's inside defense still needs work.
Kevon Looney is switchable and is a very good defender overall, but he is still improving as a rim protector. That is exactly why the team needs to bring in Dwight Howard.
Not only would he come off the bench and play some big minutes when the Golden State Warriors need more inside defense, but the 34-year-old could also mentor Looney to be a better rim protector.
As mentioned before, Dwight Howard is still incredibly springy, despite his age. Add to that his defensive IQ, which is at a very high level now, he could make a real impact at the defensive end for the Golden State Warriors if he is acquired by the franchise during the NBA Free Agency 2020.
#2 Increased versatility in the team's offense
While Kevon Looney may not be a very good three-point shooter, he is a fairly versatile scorer from inside the arc and is also capable of being a reliable fourth or fifth option for a team. However, there are times when the team needs their center to simply employ brute force against their opponent to get a bucket, a situation where Looney simply isn't the best option.
Dwight Howard, on the other hand, is an absolutely unstoppable force inside the arc. He is an amazing post-up scorer, an elite pick-and-roll finisher and an excellent lob catcher too.
Dwight Howard's role with the LA Lakers has been, for the most part, to be the guy who can get the team a bucket when the pretty plays don't work. Knowing the system of the Golden State Warriors, there will most certainly be non-pretty days aplenty or the franchise.
Considering the same, Dwight Howard needs to be the top priority for the franchise during the Free Agency 2020
#3 Added depth to the roster
Just two years ago, the Golden State Warriors' bench was filled with some of the best role players and veterans in the league. But the franchise's bench severely lacks quality at the moment.
In the position of center, the Golden State Warriors have lost DeMarcus Cousins, which has left Kevon Looney as the only developed center in the team.
That is arguably the biggest reason why the Golden State Warriors need to go after Dwight Howard during the NBA Free Agency 2020. There aren't many, if any players, who have that much experience and can still impact big games in clutch moments.
No player can play all 48 minutes in a basketball game. Moreover, the Houston Rockets' total small-ball lineup is not a viable option the Golden State Warriors can rely on. For that reason, the franchise needs Dwight Howard in its ranks ahead of the 2020-21 NBA season.
Published 26 Oct 2020, 19:41 IST