The Golden State Warriors have been without the second overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft James Wiseman all season, and with his return on the horizon, some of his teammates are singing his praises.
“Obviously he’s had his ups and downs already in his career with the injury and stuff, but he’s still so young and if you look at him now, he’s a tank, man,” Wiggins said. “He’s a tank, he’s been working hard, so I feel like when he comes back he’s going to dominate. He has his head on straight, he comes into the facility, to the games with a good attitude, ready to work, ready to get better. The main thing about him is he listens, he wants to get better, he wants to learn. I think the sky is the limit for him also.”
Wiseman has been out the entire season thus far as he is still recovering from a torn meniscus suffered during the tail end of last season. According to Wirth, Wiseman is now back to participating in 5-on-5 drills in Warriors’ practices and could be nearing a return in the coming weeks.
Wiseman had a mixed bag of performances in his rookie season, playing in 39 games and averaging 11.5 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. However, Wiseman’s presence didn’t result in positive play from the Warriors as they ended the season with a -10.2 offensive rating with Wiseman on the court and +4.5 when he was off the court. That gave Wiseman an on-off offensive rating of -14.7, the worst on the team among players who played more than 100 minutes last season, per basketball reference.
However, Wiseman was only a rookie last season, a rookie with little experience playing against high-end basketball talent at that. He only played three games with the University of Memphis the season before getting drafted.
The Warriors certainly don’t need to rush Wiseman back, as, without him, they currently sit second in the Western Conference with a record of 42-17.