What Mannion believes he'll bring to Warriors as rookie


The Warriors selected small forward Pace Mannion in the second round of the 1983 NBA Draft. Fast forward to 2020, and Pace's son, Nico, was taken by the Warriors in the second round of this year's draft. 

While the younger Mannion was emotional being picked by the same team that once selected him father in the draft, he has to hope his time in a Golden State jersey lasts longer than his dad's. Pace played just one season for the Warriors and averaged 2.1 points per game. It's clear Nico believes he can help the Warriors right away as a rookie. 

"I think my answer to that question would have been my IQ," Mannion said Thursday on KNBR's "Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks" show when asked about his strengths. "... I don't think I shot the ball great in college percentage wise, but I think I've tweaked a couple things in my shot and I'm shooting it better than I ever have right now."

Mannion, 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds, was one of the top prospects in his high school class. He was regarded as a lottery pick early in his freshman season as Arizona, but then fell off as his season continued. The point guard averaged 14.0 points and 5.3 assists per game, but shot just 39.2 percent from the field and 32.7 percent from 3-point range. 


The Warriors will need better than that. They waived Ky Bowman, clearly showing they believe Mannion can contribute off the bench as a rookie. He believes this is the perfect situation for him as a rookie, too. 

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"I think coming to a spot like this with Steve Kerr, who played point guard, along with Steph Curry, who's one of the greatest point guards of all time, just being able to learn from them is a huge thing for me," Mannion said. "Just shadowing Steph, understanding what he does and kind of getting in those same habits and just trying to learn as much as I can -- that's really the biggest thing for me.

"I'm here with a great organization, a great culture and some All-Star players on this team. I'm really excited to just get in there, learn and start working hard and competing. I feel like I can bring a lot to the table this year as a rookie, and that's just the confidence I have in myself. I'm really excited."

It really doesn't get much better than that. Mannion knows he must be even better than he was as a freshman to help a team that has championship aspirations. At the same time, he says he has put the work in to improve his game and is ready to be a sponge learning from Kerr and Curry.

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