Editor's note: As the Warriors prepare for the 2020 NBA draft, NBC Sports Bay Area will present a twice-weekly series spotlighting two "Sleepers" likely to be evaluated. This is the second of a 12-part series on intriguing prospects considered risky to select among the top 10.
The Warriors have been fascinated by two-way wings in recent years. Kentucky's Tyrese Maxey fits the mold and could be an intriguing prospect if he falls in the draft.
A 6-foot-3 guard, Maxey averaged 14.0 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 0.9 blocks as a freshman under the tutelage of coach John Calipari. In a win over Michigan State, he finished with 26 points and five rebounds. A month later, he finished with 27 points and 7 rebounds in a win over Louisville. By the end of the season, he was named to the SEC's All-Freshman team.
His defensive smarts and athleticism are attributes that the Warriors covet. In recent summers, they've looked for two-way prospects to play alongside Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. From Patrick McCaw to Jordan Poole, the team is always looking for multi-faceted talents.
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However, Maxey struggled from the field in Lexington, making just 43 percent from the field and 29 percent from 3-point range, despite being touted as a shooter. During his first season, he was a frequent gunner who didn't always get his shots within the flow of the offense. Additionally, with his slim frame, he'll need to bulk up to succeed at the next level.
At the moment, Maxey figures to be a fringe lottery pick. While Golden State is lock to have a top-5 pick, Warriors general manager Bob Myers told NBC Sports Bay Area's Monte Poole that he'd "consider" trading the pick. If Myers decides to do so and picks up a later pick in the process, Maxey could be an intriguing project for the Warriors.
Tyrese Maxey profile
Position: Shooting guard
Birthdate: November 4, 2000 (19 years old)
Hometown: Garland, Texas
2019-20 season averages: 14.0 points (42.7 percent field goals, 29.2 percent on 3-pointers, 83.3 percent on free throws), 4.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 0.9 blocks.
What they're saying: "He’s not a natural creator, he’s wired to score more than anything else, and he certainly isn’t an elite athlete by NBA combo-guard standards, although he is a pretty good on-ball defender. He’s also a worker, and by all accounts a great kid and competitor." - Rob Dauster, NBC Sports
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