Warriors rookies Moses Moody and Jonathan Kuminga find themselves in an interesting situation. The pressure seemingly is both off and on for the two, yet they certainly can feel the heat.
Moody (19) and Kuminga (18) are joining a team that already has the likes of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins, Andre Iguodala and other winning veterans. It wasn't too long ago these two were fawning over Steph and Co. Now they're teammates.
"To be honest, I'm a 19-year-old kid, so I've been watching the whole dynasty of the Golden State Warriors the last couple of years and seeing what they've been doing from my house," Moody said Tuesday to Rachel Nichols and Kendrick Perkins on ESPN's "The Jump."
"So to actually be a part of it, to be part of this environment is something special."
Special it is indeed. But Moody knows this isn't a normal situation for a rookie.
Rumors swirled BOUT what the Warriors would do with their two lottery picks. The consensus was the Warriors would do what they could to package at least one of them to add a star to this win-now team. That hasn't happened, though. At least not for now.
Golden State selected the younger Kuminga at No. 7 and then jumped at the opportunity to grab Moody at No. 14. The Arkansas product knows what the expectations are. The Warriors can't let another season of Curry, Green and now a healthy Thompson go to waste.
All that does is excite Moody.
"I feel like pressure is just motivation to perform," Moody said. "That's just more motivation for me to get in the gym and working on perfecting the small details that I have to be perfect on to really get on the floor, because I probably won't have that much leeway being a young guy. I gotta really come out and make an effect, make a difference in the game in a short period of time.
"That's just gonna motivate me to put the work in and be the best player I can."
Moody is saying all the right things, and he's performing early on in Summer League. He scored 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds in his one and only game in the California Classic at Golden 1 Center and then scored 15 points with four rebounds in his first Las Vegas Summer League Game.
All eyes will be on the development of Moody and Kuminga this season, and whether or not at least one of them can help the Warriors in the short term. Instead of viewing this as pressure, though, Moody is taking the opportunity head on, doing everything the teenager can to prove himself.