SAN FRANCISCO— On Thursday, August 20, the Golden State Warriors learned during the virtual draft lottery that they will have the second pick in the 2020 National Basketball Association (NBA) draft set to take place on October 16.
The NBA draft was supposed to happen in late June, yet the league postponed it due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year marks the first time that the Warriors will draft in the lottery since 2012 when they took Harrison Barnes with the seventh selection. Also, the Warriors’ draft position is their earliest since 1995, when they drafted Joe Smith.
The Warriors came into the lottery with a strong chance of getting the number one pick, given their worst record in the league this season. However, the Minnesota Timberwolves drew the first pick.
Next season, the Warriors are looking to return to championship contention as their trio of stars–Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson–will all be injury-free and ready to get back on the court. With the number two pick in hand, the Warriors have the ability to choose someone that can help them win now and be the future face of the franchise. Yet, writers and fans speculate that the Warriors may trade the pick if they get an established star player in return.
Bob Myers, Warriors general manager, said, “We have not made a decision on who we’re picking, what we’re doing, because we have a lot of time to figure that out. My hope is that we can sit and watch all the players that we’re interested in in person, that we can interview them in person, that we can get a chance to look at their medicals.”
This year’s draft class is more wide-open than in previous years, with experts saying that not one prospect stands out above the rest. That said, they identify the top prospects as University of Georgia shooting guard Anthony Edwards, former Memphis center James Wiseman, and former Illawarra Hawks (Australian league) point guard LaMelo Ball. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected NBA teams’ ability to meet with potential draft-picks in person.