This week should have been a homecoming of sorts for Warriors rookie James Wiseman.
The 19-year-old was born in Nashville, Tenn., but moved to Memphis to attend Memphis East High School, and later attend -- briefly -- the University of Memphis.
With the Warriors playing a back-to-back against the Grizzlies at FedEx Forum, Wiseman should have gotten a few days in the city he spent the last few years and a hero’s welcome when he stepped onto the court.
Instead, the 2020 No. 2 overall draft pick is back in San Francisco after entering the NBA's health and safety protocols for COVID-19. Eric Paschall also is back in the Bay Area while in the protocols.
This is the Warriors' only trip to Memphis during Wiseman's rookie year, so his homecoming will have to wait until the 2021-22 season.
While addressing the status of center Kevon Looney, who also entered into the health and safety protocols Saturday, Warriors coach Steve Kerr brought up the fact that Wiseman is missing this trip.
"Should also mention, just walking around, around town and to the arena, it's a reminder of how badly I feel for James," Kerr told reporters 90 minutes before tipoff between the Warriors and Grizzlies. "Our one trip to Memphis and he has obviously a lot of history here and people to see. It's devastating for James for a number of reasons, but especially because this is kind of where he's from, or at least where he's been the last couple years, and I feel bad for him."
The good news for Wiseman, who is averaging 11.8 points and 6.0 rebounds in 29 games, is that he has a long career ahead of him, which means there will be plenty of trips back to Memphis.