Are drastic changes looming for the Warriors youngsters after a slow start?

  • Editor’s note: NBC Sports Bay Area Warriors reporter Kerith Burke takes you inside the team like only she can all season long with the Ask Kerith mailbag. Send her a question on Twitter and Instagram, @KerithBurke.

Going into Monday night’s game against the Sacramento Kings at Chase Center, the Warriors are 3-7 after a terrible 0-5 road trip. Golden State has yet to beat a team with a winning record, and they have yet to win on the road.

It’s a funky start for the defending champions. The most popular questions for the mailbag were about trades, who would get minutes in the future, and how the Warriors could use the G League. Let’s go.

The word panic would only come into play if the team couldn’t identify why they had a rough start. But they know why: defensive failures, a struggling second unit, missed box outs, stagnant ball movement, turnovers and fouls.

There’s a lot to report, and it’s all connected. The theme after the road trip was accountability, with everyone looking in the mirror to make sure they were doing their part to play harder and smarter.

Teams always have more patience than those looking on the outside. The Warriors are taking a “give it time” approach, provided it’s backed by a serious commitment from all players to improve.

James Wiseman is the replacement. It’s his time, that’s what they asked him to do. It’s not pressure, it’s their expectations. Wiseman wants to be able to take the reins from Kevon Looney one day.

With that in mind, I doubt the Warriors will add another big one that would end up taking Wiseman minutes and potentially stunting his growth after a lost 2021-22 season. Instead, the Warriors are investing in Wiseman under the tutelage of Looney, Draymond Green and development coach Dejan Milojevic.

The Warriors also lean enough into small-ball lineups to be able to get by without another center and even survive patches where Wiseman is struggling, provided everyone is healthy.

Regarding Andre Iguodala, the Warriors will not give up their place in the lineup. When he decided to put off his retirement for another year, there was a mutual understanding that he might not play much this season (last season he played 31 regular season games), but his locker room value is an asset. He teaches young players how to become professionals.

Andre will retire with Golden State. He has built respect and admiration, and he deserves a celebratory start to the end of his career. The front office won’t let him down in pursuit of a short-term band-aid.

Wiseman needs time and rehearsals. Growing pains are called that for a reason. Some things hurt to look at.

Specifically, his understanding of defensive rotations, setting up powerful screens and aggression around the rim are things he needs to work on.

No one is immune to criticism when they deserve it. It’s fair to note that Wiseman is struggling. He’s minus-69 plus-minus going into Monday’s game. Plus-minus isn’t a perfect stat, but it does indicate Wiseman was on the floor when the Warriors were outplayed. It’s part of the problem with the second unit score.

Social media gets ridiculous when it comes to Wiseman, especially when the conversation shifts from valid criticism backed by stats to comments like “he sucks” or “bust.”

It’s extreme to call someone a bust when they haven’t played a full, healthy season. Ideally, 2-3 seasons give an idea of ​​who a player is. Wiseman has played 49 NBA games.

I think the Warriors want to delay sending either of these guys to the G League for as long as possible.

Right now, people are on Jonathan Kuminga after playing a solid 38-minute game against the Pelicans. Can he string together a collection of good games now that Kerr has declared Kuminga earned a spot in the rotation?

Wiseman’s injuries have forced him to look at the players he should join on the pitch. Now is the time to make those connections. Maybe Wiseman could benefit from a speed of play that’s just a bit slower in Santa Cruz to ensure his confidence is high, but the situation must be more hopeless. The Warriors aren’t there yet, either way.

Kerr gave Wiseman a thumbs up for the practice yesterday, saying, “Modern life is unforgiving and people disregard organic growth. Everyone wants results right now… He has a lot to learn but he is a willing learner and we are going to take our time with him.

For now, rookies are the only ones getting run in the G League.

I understand why fans are curious about trades, but I doubt it’s something the front office is considering after ten games. The Warriors don’t know what they have yet. It’s too early to tell what kind of gains Wiseman, Kuminga and Moses Moody can make this season, and the rookies have barely played.

In addition, the money must match. A hard-hitting veteran costs money. Perhaps the best the Warriors could do in terms of a trade is to trade salary for salary. And of course you need a business partner. If the Warriors don’t yet know what they have after ten games, neither do the other teams. A transaction happening so close to the deadline would require a degree of desperation that has yet to emerge.

You make an interesting point about the social divide within the team. What happens in Steph Curry’s world in her mid-thirties with a family is very different from what single 20-year-olds experience when they’d normally be in college.

The young players are friendly with each other, but they don’t spend every moment outside of work hanging out. The team as a whole is not too fond of partying with their colleagues. The guys love each other, but they have their own lives and their own commitments.

Where you might see age play a role is with basic basketball skills. Getting out of college early — or Wiseman and Kuminga essentially bypassing college — means the NBA becomes the developmental league. The rawness is more pronounced.

Lamb looked promising when he started in New Orleans, scoring 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field and 4-of-6 from 3-point range.

Donte DiVincenzo’s hamstring injury meant the Warriors had to rely on Ty Jerome as an extra ball handler on the road trip. He did well too!

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I don’t know how much the Warriors want to rely on two-way players when trying to lock in their rotations, but maybe I’m wrong in predicting limited roles for these guys. Kerr said he would consider any players who prove they deserve an opportunity in the rotation.

The Warriors’ starters are still the best in the league, but playing them for more than 34-36 minutes per game isn’t ideal. It’s bad for their body in the long run, especially as they get older.

Minutes, minutes, minutes. The great showdown in one season. With the depth of the Warriors, the starters should be able to take a break once things stabilize.

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