There's lots of good news for the Warriors coming out of the G League bubble in Orlando, Fla. these days.
Jordan Poole has been lighting up the competition and wowing his Golden State teammates, while Nico Mannion returned to the court on Thursday following a three-game absence due to quad and ankle injuries.
Mannion, the team’s second-round pick in November’s draft, dropped a dozen dimes without turning the ball over in Thursday’s 116-111 win over the Memphis Hustle. As NBC Sports Bay Area’s Drew Shiller noted, Mannion also recorded four steals and hit a big 3-pointer late in the victory.
Mannion showed supreme quickness and some style on these passes, the qualities that make him an intriguing option to back up Steph Curry at point guard.
He still probably needs this season’s G League experience and an offseason to change his body before becoming a regular in the Golden State rotation for Steve Kerr.
Another knock on Mannion has been his shooting and he went 4-of-13 from the field, including 3-of-9 from 3-point range, Thursday. He finished with 12 points and is shooting 38.4 percent with Santa Cruz.
But the Warriors have to be encouraged by his effort.
GSWReddit on Twitter also provided some context on Mannion's G League season so far.
Taking a look at the Warriors’ backcourt backups, Brad Wanamaker is only signed through this season and Mychal Mulder’s 2021-22 contract is not guaranteed. Poole is making a push for minutes as well, but Mannion is more of a true point guard. Listed at 6-foot-2, 190 pounds Mannion averaged six minutes in six games before his reassignment to the G League.
Bob Myers and Joe Lacob were scheduled to travel to Orlando to watch the Sea Dubs play on Thursday, so it was a well-timed performance from the 19-year-old Mannion, who is playing on a two-way contract.