Warriors

NBA Draft Lottery 2019: Pelicans win Zion Williamson draw for No. 1 pick

zionlotteryap.jpg
AP

NBA Draft Lottery 2019: Pelicans win Zion Williamson draw for No. 1 pick

In all likelihood, Zion Williamson will begin his career in the Big Easy.

That's because the New Orleans Pelicans won Tuesday night's NBA draft lottery. The Duke superstar is expected by many to be the top pick in next month's draft, and the Pelicans will be able to call Williamson's name at the podium June 20 in Brooklyn. New Orleans had the seventh-best odds of the 14 teams in the lottery, with a six percent chance of winning. 

Here are the full results of Tuesday's draft lottery. 

1. New Orleans Pelicans
2. Memphis Grizzlies
3. New York Knicks
4. Los Angeles Lakers
5. Cleveland Cavaliers
6. Phoenix Suns
7. Chicago Bulls
8. Atlanta Hawks
9. Washington Wizards
10. Atlanta Hawks (via Dallas Mavericks)
11. Minnesota Timberwolves
12. Charlotte Hornets
13. Miami Heat
14. Boston Celtics (via Kings)

The Kings would've picked No. 14 overall in this draft, but forfeited their pick after trading former first-round pick Nik Stauskas to the Philadelphia 76ers in order to pursue free agents in the summer of 2015. The 76ers then traded that pick to the Boston Celtics at the 2017 NBA Draft, moving back from the No. 1 spot while Philadelphia moved up to pick former University of Washington guard Markelle Fultz. Both the Kings and Sixers probably are kicking themselves for said trades, as either team would have been able to add a cost-controlled player to their roster ahead of pivotal summers.  

[RELATED: Watch Dell, Sonya flip coin to see who roots for Steph, Seth]

The Knicks won't be able to pick Williamson, and that's good news for the Warriors. Kevin Durant might or might not have his heart set on going to New York this summer -- depending upon who you ask -- but the Knicks' ability to surround Durant with talent just got more difficult. New York still has more salary-cap space than anyone else, but a trade package for disgruntled Pelicans star Anthony Davis won't be as enticing with Williamson already in New Orleans. The Knicks can still easily sign another star with Durant, but their path to NBA Finals contention won't be a straight line. 

The Lakers did not land Williamson, but they will be able to add a young cost-controlled player to their lineup to play with LeBron James. Depending on who they select at No. 4 -- NBC Sports California's James Ham predicts they'll select Jarrett Culver out of Texas Tech -- they might even have a more enticing trade package to land disgruntled Davis in a trade. Whether the Warriors lose Durant or not, a James-Davis combination would pose problems for the reigning champions.

The Kings, meanwhile, would then have yet one more team in a loaded Western Conference to fend off as they try to return to the NBA playoffs for the first time since 2006. The Lakers' pick is no guarantee that Davis is headed to Hollywood, but the possibility at least has to be considered. 

The worst news for the Warriors and Kings, though, is that they'll play Williamson at least three times a year for the foreseeable future. The Warriors' stranglehold on the Western Conference could loosen if Durant walks in free agency, while the Kings would have another up-and-coming team to contend with as they try to return to the NBA playoffs for the first time since 2006. 

Andre Iguodala discusses his NBA future, won't be like Vince Carter

Andre Iguodala discusses his NBA future, won't be like Vince Carter

Nobody knows which team Andre Iguodala is going to finish the 2019-20 season with.

But we do know that the former Warriors forward will become an unrestricted free agent next summer.

How many more seasons for the 2015 NBA Finals MVP?

"I could play like Vince Carter. I could. I won't," Iguodala said Thursday on Hot 97 radio out of Brooklyn. "I'm really excited about the things that I got going off the court. Patience is killing me on the schedule. I'm ready to go full-time off the court.

"But I'll probably play like two, three more years. Three years max. So we'll see how things shake up. I've been working out. I'm in really good shape. I'm the leanest I've been in awhile."

Iguodala -- who will turn 36 years old on Jan. 28 -- is entering his 16th NBA season.

Carter -- who will turn 43 years old on Jan. 26 and was drafted fifth overall by the Warriors in 1998 -- is entering his record-setting 22nd NBA season.

Iguodala, meanwhile, is waiting for the Grizzlies to strike a deal. If they can't trade him by the Feb. 6 deadline, the expectation is that the sides will agree to a buyout -- allowing the two-time All-Defensive selection to pick his next team.

[RELATEDReport: Iguodala set on two teams if he gets Grizz buyout]

"Hopefully it happens sooner than later," Iguodala told Hot 97.

In the meantime, he will have to keep working on his golf game and watching the Dubs from afar.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram

Five observations from Warriors' 33-point preseason loss to Lakers

kerrus.jpg
USATSI

Five observations from Warriors' 33-point preseason loss to Lakers

Editor's note: Grant Liffmann (@grantliffmann) is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders, which airs on NBC Sports Bay Area 90 minutes before each home game and 60 minutes after every game. Each week, Grant will drop his Outsider Observation on the state of the Dubs.
 
The Warriors' fourth preseason game, a 126-93 loss to the Lakers on Wednesday night at Staples Center, was one to forget.

There were not too many macro-level conclusions to be made from the 33-point loss, as Steph Curry, Kevon Looney, Willie Cauley-Stein, Alec Burks, Glenn Robinson III and Omari Spellman all sat out. Despite the huge talent disparity in the game, it is quite obvious that the Lakers are an impressive team.

LeBron James and Anthony Davis already have midseason-type chemistry, and the rest of the squad plays with great enthusiasm and skill. They will be a force to be reckoned with all season if they stay healthy. 
 
Even though the game was rather meaningless for the Warriors, there were some small takeaways to take note of.

Draymond Green's conditioning

If Draymond Green seems a tad slow or a little out of shape, do not worry, this is how he usually approaches the regular season. Green consistently has tried to reduce the wear and tear on his body in the offseason as he prepares for a long and arduous NBA schedule. This season is no different as Green gains his conditioning as the regular season begins.

Unlike last season, it is expected that the power forward pushes himself physically to reach his playoff-shape earlier in the regular season, as the Warriors will need him at his very best from the start. It is crucial that he plays like the All-Star he is if the Dubs have a chance at reaching the playoffs. 

Eric Paschall's progress

Eric Paschall showed some glimpses of how he can be a solid defender. Paschall faced LeBron in a few one-on-one situations, and held his own, pressuring The King into tough fadeaway shots -- though James inevitably scored on those possessions.

On the other side of the court, Paschall made a fadeaway of his own in LeBron's face. While that shot looked fluid and went in, it is clear that the early weakness in Paschall's game is his shooting. Like most rookies, adapting to the NBA's longer 3-point distance, as well as the athleticism and speed of the opponents, can be a tough transition when trying to find their shot.

There is no reason to doubt that Paschall eventually will improve in that regard, but if he continues to struggle on open jumpers to start the season, it might limit his playing time early on. 

Watching Jordan Poole

As expected, Jordan Poole is not ready to take over and lead an offense without help. There was no reason to assume at this point he would be able to, but after expectations soared sky-high following his explosive first two preseason games, his production has fallen off considerably as the Warriors' stars and key players have sat out.

Poole can be a weapon in an offense where he can fly under the radar and come off screens free to shoot. With Curry, Green or D'Angelo Russell feeding him, Poole will have ample opportunity to fire away. But when he is the focal point of the offense, and defenses are able to key in on him, he's a lot less effective.

With time and experience, Poole has the skillset and mindset to eventually be an offensive force. But until then, he will need to be a complimentary piece that can spread the floor for Curry and Russell. 

Jacob Evans' evolution

In four preseason games, Jacob Evans III is a combined 4-for-7 from 3-point range. While it is a small sample size, it is very clear Evans is a much more confident shooter, with a more effective shooting stroke. The Warriors are desperate to find players that are capable of defending small forwards, while being able and willing to hit an open shot.

If Evans maintains this new found effectiveness, there is a strong chance that he will find consistent playing time in the rotation.

Steve Kerr's rotations

Missing Looney, Cauley-Stein and Burks for the whole preseason severely has limited Steve Kerr's ability to experiment with rotations or try to development chemistry in lineups. With the start of the regular season next week, it appears as if all the experimentation will have to be a work in progress while the games count.

[RELATED: Dudley backs Dray's comments on Chriss' tenure with Suns]

The Warriors' playoff hopes will not have a large margin for error to lose games while they get players back from injury and try to strategize the most effective lineups. This will be Kerr's challenge, and patience will be key.