Draymond, Warriors want Wiseman to have 'next play mentality'

Draymond talking to Wiseman

Through the first 14 games of his NBA career, Warriors rookie James Wiseman has shown flashes of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Anthony Davis and Kevin Garnett.

But for every great play from Wiseman, there have been just as many moments where he looks every bit like a 19-year-old who played just three college games.

Wiseman is extremely talented, but he essentially made the jump from high school to the NBA. There are going to be growing pains as the Warriors try to mold him into the superstar they expect him to become.

Draymond Green has taken the No. 2 overall draft pick under his wing and is trying to teach Wiseman everything he knows. In the Warriors' thrilling comeback win over the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on Monday night, the three-time NBA champion was heard explaining in great detail what Wiseman did wrong on a fastbreak that ended in a turnover.

In the latest Dubs Talk podcast, host Kerith Burke spoke to Warriors player development coach Theo Robertson about Green's influence on Wiseman.

"Draymond's been a second coach, a primary coach," Robertson told Burke. "He's been awesome for James. Just the communication, walking him through possession by possession where he needs to be, again, putting him in a position to be successful and just having that type of presence on the floor, a guy that has a lot of passion, a championship pedigree, a fierce competitor like no other. He's been awesome to have next to [Wiseman] and really command the back line of our defense."


Wiseman, who had a lot of success in high school and his brief stint at Memphis, is getting frustrated after mistakes or when he picks up fouls. After he was removed with five fouls in Monday's game, he punched a water cooler on the Warriors' bench.

But Robertson and the Warriors are encouraged that Wiseman is open to the feedback from Green and the coaches.

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"I see him absorbing [the information] and that's a great thing," Robertson told Burke. "I think James has a tendency to get down on himself at times, but the biggest thing James will do is he'll respond and he'll bounce back. We've always encouraged him to have a 'next play mentality,' but at the same time, we want him to feel the impact of wanting to make a better, greater play, wanting to be better. You're never going to reach a level of greatness or your ceiling if you're not striving for that.

"So James definitely carries that with him. I think he's mentioned at times that he's a bit of perfectionist and that's absolutely true. That's not something he shies away from and we love that about him. And when Draymond challenges him in the ways that he does, that's only a great thing for him."

Wiseman is the ultimate project for the Warriors. They know it's going to take time for the game to slow down for him. But the 7-foot center has the desire to be great and he's got one of the smartest on-court teachers in Green. So it's only a matter of when, not if, Wiseman blossoms into the star everyone expects.

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