Anthony Edwards

NBA mock draft: Will Warriors go big man or add guard with top pick?

NBA mock draft: Will Warriors go big man or add guard with top pick?

While the Warriors are watching the NBA's restart from home, an important date looms for Golden State. General manager Bob Myers and the rest of the front office finally will know where they will pick in the 2020 NBA Draft when the lottery takes place on Aug. 25. 

Once the Warriors' place in the draft is set, they can really start working on scenarios of where certain players might fall, or who they would take with the No. 1 overall pick. The question is, do they hone in on another guard or look to add a big man? 

In our own latest mock draft by James Ham, he gave the Warriors Georgia shooting guard Anthony Edwards with the top pick in the draft. He wasn't alone there, too. CBS Sports' Colin Ward-Henninger and NBADraft.net both sent Edwards to Golden State with the top pick as well.

"Edwards isn’t the only player with All-Star potential in the top 10, but he is probably the safest bet to walk into the league and find a niche," Ham wrote. 

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

As a freshman, Edwards averaged 19.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per game. He just turned 19 years old on Wednesday, and at 6-foot-5 and 225 pounds, he already is built like a pro. 

"At best, you're looking at a future All-NBA player who should thrive in the NBA style at the coveted wing position," Ward-Henninger wrote on Edwards. "Getting into a strong culture like Golden State's should help remedy any effort issues on both ends of the court."

Edwards likely would come off the bench for the Warriors and be a scoring threat for the second unit. If coach Steve Kerr wants to use Draymond Green more as a small-ball center, Edwards could come in as a third guard and join Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins and Green. There certainly are concerns with Edwards, too. 

In his only college season, Edwards was ball-dominant and not very efficient. He averaged just 2.8 assists and made only 29.4 percent of his 3-point attempts. The truth is, he also had to have the ball in his hands all the time and throw up some ugly shots for a Georgia team that lacked talent. Going big might be a better option for the Warriors. 

"Golden State could go plenty of different directions if they are lucky enough to land the top spot," Ham wrote. "Obi Toppin might be a better fit. They need a big like James Wiseman."

Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman opted to go with Toppin to the Warriors with the No. 4 overall pick.

"Obi Toppin would immediately give Golden State's guards an elite finisher," Wasserman wrote.

[RELATED: Why Walton thinks Warriors' hard year had big silver lining]

The Dayton forward gives fans highlight-reel dunks and also can shoot from distance. Toppin, 22, averaged 20.0 points and grabbed 7.5 rebounds per game this season as a sophomore. Listed at 6-foot-9 and 220 pounds, Toppin would give Kerr a frontcourt option as a NBA-ready scorer. But Toppin isn't known for his defense, and the Warriors again wouldn't be the tallest group with him and Green. 

Golden State also could look at big men like Wiseman and Onyeka Okongwu. Wiseman is more of a traditional center, while Okongwu is center/forward hybrid but can't stretch the floor like Toppin. 

The Warriors will have options. More than anything, it all depends on where the ping pong balls fall.

2020 NBA mock draft 12.0: Projecting Warriors, Kings' first-round picks

2020 NBA mock draft 12.0: Projecting Warriors, Kings' first-round picks

It’s mock draft time!

The NBA restart begins later this week and an official draft order is just around the corner.
 
Working around the coronavirus pandemic is making this year the strangest draft seasons in NBA history. How well does a player interview via Zoom video calls? Will there be a combine? How will we get true measure, physical agility testing and see how players do in small-sided games. 

To add a more realistic spin to the mock, we’ve turned to the draft simulator on Tankathon.com to randomize the lottery order.

Here is a look at NBC Sports California’s 2020 Mock Draft 12.0:

View NBA Mock Draft 12.0

NBA rumors: Warriors would draft Anthony Edwards if they pick No. 1

NBA rumors: Warriors would draft Anthony Edwards if they pick No. 1

The Warriors reportedly haven't spoken to top NBA draft prospect Anthony Edwards on Zoom yet, but that doesn't mean they aren't interested in the Georgia product.

On Aug. 25, the Warriors will find out where they will pick when the NBA draft lottery is held. If the odds fall in their favor, Edwards could be a Warrior.

The San Francisco Chronicle's Connor Letourneau reported Saturday, citing sources, that if the Warriors landed the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, and decide to keep it, they will take Edwards.

"Sources have indicated to The Chronicle that if the Warriors land the No. 1 pick and decide not to trade down, they’ll likely take Georgia guard Anthony Edwards," Letourneau wrote.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

But what if they don't get the No. 1 pick?

"If Golden State lands anywhere between Nos. 2 and No. 5, it’ll strongly consider Iowa State’s Tyrese Haliburton, Auburn’s Isaac Okoro and Israel’s Deni Avdija, among others," Letourneau wrote.

In NBC Sports California's NBA Mock Draft 8.0, Insider James Ham has Avdija going No. 5 overall, Okoro going No. 7 overall and Haliburton going No. 8 overall.

[RELATED: Luxury tax won't deter Warriors]

Ham currently has the Warriors picking Dayton's Obi Toppin at No. 3 overall.

With the 2020 NBA Draft not happening until Oct. 15, the Warriors have plenty of time to put together their big board of top prospects and devise scenarios depending on where they fall in the top five.