Why young Warriors big man Omari Spellman intrigues Steve Kerr so much

Why young Warriors big man Omari Spellman intrigues Steve Kerr so much

The Warriors selected forward Eric Paschall in the second round of the 2019 NBA Draft this year, but they actually added two former Villanova big men this offseason.

While the Warriors have high expectations for Paschall as a rookie, coach Steve Kerr is just as intrigued by power forward Omari Spellman, who was a first-round pick just one year ago. Golden State acquired Spellman from the Hawks in a trade that sent center Damian Jones to Atlanta this offseason, and the Dubs have been eyeing him for quite some time.

The Warriors owned the No. 28 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. They went with guard/forward Jacob Evans III out of Cincinnati. Spellman was taken two picks later by the Hawks. 

“We were really intrigued by him,” Kerr recently told The Athletic's Anthony Slater. “He came in and had a great workout for us. We ended up taking Jacob Evans because we had more of a need on the wing, but we loved Omari. He has a lot of ability.”

Spellman lasted just one season in Atlanta before being shipped to the Warriors. The 6-foot-9 big man played in 46 games for the Hawks, averaging 5.9 points and 4.2 rebounds per game. 

But Kerr believes Spellman can find his role on the Warriors, just like a former fan favorite did. 

“Spellman’s got a chance to play a role for us,” Kerr said to Slater. “Talented kid. It’ll be really nice to be able to space the floor with a big. We probably haven’t had that since Mo Speights.”

[RELATED: Omari Spellman must overcome weigh issues]

Though he played limited minutes and battled weight issues, Spellman made 44 3-point shots last season, nailing 34.4 percent of his attempts from deep. He also shot 43.3 percent from long distance as a freshman at Villanova. 

Spellman still is just 22 years old. He's full of skills and completely turn his young career around under Kerr if he stays in shape.

Steph Curry jokes about why ex-Warrior Andre Iguodala finished big dunk

Steph Curry jokes about why ex-Warrior Andre Iguodala finished big dunk

Andre Iguodala had a very ...

... Andre-Iguodala-like performance in the Miami Heat's 112-106 win over the Boston Celtics on Tuesday.

The former Warriors forward registered six points (2-for-6 FG), eight rebounds, four assists, two blocks and one steal in 31 minutes.

With fewer than six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, he turned back the clock a little bit.

Steph Curry shared the highlight in an Instagram story, and included the perfect caption.

Curry -- the only unanimous MVP in NBA history -- and Iguodala -- the 2015 NBA Finals MVP -- are avid golfers, and even played a round together at Augusta National Golf Club (the site of the Masters) in February 2016.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Iguodala became a golf fanatic shortly after he joined the Warriors in July 2013.

"I gotta give all the credit to (former Golden State assistant coach) Pete Myers," Iguodala said in March 2018. "Once I got here, I really wanted to learn how to play ... Pete Myers taught me how to hit a draw.

"And we would just go to the range and hit balls ... he kinda got me hooked and that was all she wrote."

[RELATED: Iguodala jokes he bet big on Steph to win golf tournament]

And one year later, he made one thing crystal clear.

Those were good times.

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Steve Kerr defends Warriors' Andrew Wiggins: 'He's a damn good player'

Steve Kerr defends Warriors' Andrew Wiggins: 'He's a damn good player'

When the Warriors acquired Andrew Wiggins at the NBA trade deadline in February, it was not a decision that universally was applauded. 

There still are people who disagree with Golden State's decision to acquire the No. 1 overall pick from the 2014 NBA Draft. But even those who are skeptical about Wiggins' future would admit that he played well in a Dubs uniform this season.

"I wasn't surprised at all about what we saw because I've coached against him," Steve Kerr said Wednesday on "The Bill Simmons Podcast." "The biggest thing for us was all about what you need today to win games. The game has changed so much and it's so hard to guard ... you gotta have size and versatility on the wings.

"Multiple-positional defenders who can guard their position, but also guard two or three other positions. Andrew has the size and athleticism to do exactly that. He was an excellent defender for us, and played really well offensively.

"He may not be an MVP candidate, but he's a damn good player. He fits right in with what we're trying to do."

Wiggins averaged 19.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.6 assists over 12 games with Golden State, while shooting nearly 46 percent overall and 34 percent from deep.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Additionally, his 1.4 blocks and 1.3 steals per game both would be career highs over a full season.

With Steph Curry and Klay Thompson as teammates, Wiggins won't feel consistent heat to deliver big scoring outputs. Will there be times when the Warriors need him to step up and take over offensively? Yes.

[RELATED: Warriors owner Lacob cites Barnes when praising Wiggins]

But overall, he's going to have the luxury of being able to take on a more comfortable role that suits his game.

"He just wants to play basketball and have fun, and have no pressure on him," former Warriors point guard Tim Hardaway said in June. "This is the team to be on to do that, and he's going to excel.

"He's going to be all right."

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