By Marcus Thompson II firstname.lastname@example.org
Jerry West, Warriors’ board member and consultant, has been drilling this word into the psyche of his front-office cohorts. Assets. Assets. Assets.
“We can’t afford to let assets pass us by and address need,” said Warriors general manager Bob Myers, explaining West’s philosophy. “If the best asset is a guard, we have to take him at seven.”
With the NBA draft less than a week away, the Warriors options are still wide open. That’s especially so because every available prospect is in play even if he dupllicates what’s already on the roster. The only draft-related certainty Myers was willing to reveal in Friday’s chat with the media was that Golden State will take the best available player.
That could be Weber State point guard Damian Lillard, an Oakland native. That could be Syracuse shooting guard Dion Waiters or North Carolina foward Tyler Zeller. That could be Illinois center Meyers Leonard, who is working out for the Warriors on Saturday.
Myers said his staff has narrowed down its top seven players in the draft, though how they’re ranked still draws some discussion. A few of those high on the list could fall to the Warriors at seven – such as Kentucky’s Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, North Carolina’s Harrison Barnes – which would make things easier.
“Ultimately,” Myers said, “you pull back and say, ‘Who’s the best player? You get with your guys, you come to a consensus and you choose that player.”
Myers has not ruled out trading the pick. According to league sources, Golden State has talked to the teams above them about moving up. But Myers said he don’t believe he’ll hear better trade offers and demands the closed draft day gets.
Myers said his opinion on the crop likely available at No. 7 has “fluctuated.”According to league and team sources, some of the early favorites — such as Baylor’s Perry Jones, Kentucky’s Terrence Jones, and Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger (back issues) have fallen down on the Warriors draft board.
At this point, the best players available may be in the backcourt, or a big, all positions the Warriors figure to be set. So Golden State could wind up drafting for depth, which Myers said is fine as long as they have starter potential.
“You gotta be very careful passing on talent,” Myers said, later adding, “If you’re going to take a swing — it’s hard to get good players, it’s hard to get difference makers — I don’t think you go into draft looking to get a single.”
Myers said he would “absolutely” talk Brandon Roy, the former Portland star guard.
Roy was amnestied by the Blazers and retired due to consistent knee problems. But recently, Roy announced he wanted to come back to the NBA. Myers, who represented Roy during his days as an agent, has said he’s looking for veteran depth.
According to sources close to the former All-Star, Roy was intrigued by the idea of playing for the Warriors before he retired.