Simmons, O'Connor rave about Warriors' chances next season

Draymond Klay Steph

The Warriors so far have added two players in free agency.

Otto Porter Jr. and Nemanja Bjelica are joining the franchise on veteran's minimum contracts.

"I really liked Otto Porter as a flier free agent this year," The Ringer's Bill Simmons said Tuesday night on his podcast. "He just hasn't been healthy. He doesn't suck.

"He's actually the kind of guy -- if he can stay on the floor -- that makes a lot of sense in this day and age. He's a 3-and-D guy who is athletic [and] is a good passer. He does good things."

Simmons and his guest Kevin O'Connor agree that the top three teams headed into next season are the Los Angeles Lakers, Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks.

But they both are very bullish on the Warriors, who probably will make a couple of additional moves to improve the roster.

O'Connor: "They're gonna be great. They're a major contender. If Klay comes back and he's the same Klay Thompson we've all known and loved for years -- they're in that top four pretty solidly."

Simmons: "You know I love [Steph] Curry so I'm gonna go glass half full all the time. But I really think this is the second best [team in the Western Conference]. If you're saying them vs the [Phoenix] Suns -- I like the Warriors' upside more."


O'Connor: "Me too. No doubt about that. Draymond Green is gonna come back with a vengeance. He was outstanding defensively last year. Imagine him this year when they actually have serious championship hopes. If any of their young guys -- any of them -- pop and surpass expectations, that's a game changer for them. I love the Warriors. They're gonna be awesome."

Simmons: "[Moses] Moody, [James] Wiseman, [Jonathan] Kuminga as these young athletes -- they can throw out in home games, they can throw out when they're up 15, they can really carefully insert in certain lineups. When they come in -- young legs, athleticism, they're running around and just doing stuff. That's a good situation for all three of those guys."

As KOC noted -- and as general manager Bob Myers said last week -- Klay is the biggest variable when it comes to the Warriors truly contending for the title.

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And it's going to take the five-time NBA All-Star some time to get reacclimated. So everybody will have to practice patience as Klay goes through some bumps along the way as he attempts to regain his form.

The 31-year-old was playing the best all-around basketball of his career when he tore his left ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals.

If he gets back to that level or close to it ... watch out.

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