by Branden Peters / @kuhvet

A lot has been made of the Golden State Warriors’ Playoff drought. One post-season appearance since 1994 (be it a memorable one) is just not enough for the Warriors’ loyal fan base. The active new owners and the addition of Jerry West in the front office are signs that things are changing but there is still a lot to be desired on the floor.

Under Keith Smart the Ws improved in the post-Nellie era, thanks in large part to the additions of Dorrell Wright and David Lee. Unfortunately there was a major drop off in production when Smart had to go to the bench. With the exception of Reggie Williams there wasn’t anyone the team could consistently rely on production from outside of the starting five.

The Warriors are one good player away from contending for a Playoff spot in the West, unfortunately that player probably won’t be available at 11. So the next best thing is a player who can step in and contribute right away.

With the 11th pick in the 2011 SLAMonline Mock Draft, the Golden State Warriors select…

Marcus Morris from Kansas.

I really considered taking Lithuanian baller Donatas Motiejunas at this spot but the Ws are too close to being good to draft another project. Most scouts believe Morris is NBA ready and I agree. He won’t crack the starting lineup just yet but he could easily spell Wright or Lee. He definitely brings something to the table that Al Thorton, Lou Almundson and Vlad Rad don’t provide. His back to the basket game and mid-range J are something the Warriors frontcourt is lacking as well. With the exception of Lee, there is not one player on the W’s roster with the post game that Morris showed at Kansas. He can hit the turn-around jumper from either shoulder; he’s athletic not to mention his jumper is wet from 20-feet and in.

I don’t like Morris’ average wingspan for a 6-8/6-9 player but his intensity on the defensive end makes up for that. And we all know that the Ws need help on that end.

Morris is a very solid pick at 11 and with all the draft busts who have walked through the doors at 7000 Coliseum Way, solid is a step in the right direction. If the rumors of Jerry West wanting to trade Monta are true then Morris can be even more valuable to the squad that much quicker.

2011 SLAMonline Mock Draft
Pick Team Player Pick Team Player
1 Cavs Kyrie Irving 16 76ers
2 TWolves Derrick Williams 17 Knicks
3 Jazz Brandon Knight 18 Wizards
4 Cavs Enes Kanter 19 Bobcats
5 Raptors Bismack Biyombo 20 TWolves
6 Wizards Jan Vesely 21 Blazers
7 Kings Kemba Walker 22 Nuggets
8 Pistons Kawhi Leonard 23 Rockets
9 Bobcats Jonas Valanciunas 24 Thunder
10 Bucks Alec Burks 25 Celtics
11 Warriors Marcus Morris 26 Mavs
12 Jazz 27 Nets
13 Suns 28 Bulls
14 Rockets 29 Spurs
15 Pacers 30 Bulls