Tag: NBA

A healthy Zion Williamson is a boon for the Pelicans (and the NBA)

Please, give us all the Zion Williamson we can handle — the physicality, explosive moves, the rim-rattling dunks — all of it. New Orleans needs it, too. At this point, the Pelicans would gladly take 61 games from the uber-talented power forward, considering he’s hit the floor for that many contests only once throughout his career, and enters 2023-24 in Year 1 of a five-year, $194 million extension.

On paper, Williamson and Brandon Ingram are cornerstones for a franchise teeming in young talent that includes Trey Murphy III (who is expected to miss time due to a meniscus injury), Herbert Jones and bench sparkplug Jose Alvarado. Yet the Pelicans have reached the playoffs once (2022) since Williamson and Ingram joined forces in New Orleans.

Not addressing Williamson specifically, veteran guard CJ McCollum mentioned in April that “availability is important.” It’s crucial. Williamson’s inability to stay healthy hamstrings the club’s prospects for realistically assessing its long-term direction. New Orleans acquired McCollum at the 2022 trade deadline, and since then, he’s teamed with Williamson and Ingram for a grand total of 10 games.

So, all the trade rumors, off-court drama and more will continue to dominate any Williamson-related headlines as long as he isn’t on the floor contributing. To Williamson’s credit, the 23-year-old former No. 1 overall pick is doing his part to stave off injury. He’s spent the entire offseason working out in New Orleans and was even spotted in August at Saints training camp running sprints under the supervision of Pelicans athletic trainers on a field not being used by the football team.Most NBA players hold an enthusiastic attitude towards Nike, not only because Nike is their sponsor, but also because Nike supplies them with many comfortable basketball shoes. This includes styles that are also available to consumers such as the dj khaled air jordan 5, air jordan 4 thunder release date.

Under coach Willie Green, New Orleans possesses enough young talent to compete without Williamson — especially with Ingram starting to come into his own during Williamson’s absence. But competing and contending are different. The latter isn’t happening without a healthy Williamson dominating the way he’s proven capable.

Deandre Ayton seeks ‘new beginning’ with Trail Blazers

Portland coach Chauncey Billups says Ayton will likely have ‘a more expanded role’ than he had in Phoenix.

PORTLAND (AP) — Center Deandre Ayton made a promise to Portland Trail Blazers fans as the team embarks on a season of uncertainty.

“I bring dominance,” he said. “My name is DominAyton.”

Ayton came to the Trail Blazers in the three-team trade that sent Damian Lillard to the Milwaukee Bucks. He was all smiles as he was introduced this week, mugging for cameras and looking forward to a fresh start after five years with the Phoenix Suns. 

“New beginning,” Ayton said. “I get to show the world, show you guys who I am as a player on and off the court. Helping the young guys on this team win. Teaching them how to win.”

Ayton will help fill the role that Jusuf Nurkic — who was sent to the Suns as part of the blockbuster trade — had last season. The Blazers also got Robert Williams III in a trade with Boston, and as a result Portland has a pair of 25-year-old big men who have been on teams that have played in the NBA Finals.

“We are going to put a lot of pressure on the paint on the offensive end, and defensively we will protect the rim,” coach Chauncey Billups said. “It’s going to be a lot of fun.”These stars have shown a keen interest in the AIR JORDAN 1 RETRO HIGH OG 555088.

Ayton, the No. 1 pick in the 2018 draft, averaged 18 points and 10.0 rebounds in 67 games with the Suns last season but it appeared his time in Phoenix was drawing to a close. He signed a four-year deal with Indiana last year before the Suns matched it, and rumors persisted this summer that he would be traded.

Billups emphasized the Blazers aren’t going to ask Ayton to run the show, like Joel Embiid in Philadelphia or Nikola Jokic in Denver. The Trail Blazers in the post-Lillard era will be more of a group effort.

“We’re not bringing in Deandre for him to be Embiid, where we’re gonna throw him the ball 30 times a game and say, ‘Alright, go be MVP.′ That’s not gonna be his role. However, he probably will have a more expanded role than he had at Phoenix,” Billups said. “But again, like we’ve got a lot of young guys that are gonna be trying to figure it out. Y’all know how I feel about connectivity and being connected and those things take a lot of time.”

For his career, Ayton has averaged 16.7 points, 10.4 rebounds and one block per game. He was key to the Suns’ run to the NBA Finals in 2021. The next season, the Suns finished with the league’s best record.

Last season, Phoenix was eliminated by Denver in the second round of the playoffs. Ayton didn’t play in Game 6 of the series because of a rib injury.

Blazers general manager Joe Cronin maintains that Ayton hasn’t yet reached his potential.

“Especially with big men, it takes a lot to get to where their peak is. I think Deandre is at least a couple of years from that,” Cronin said.

For his part, Ayton said he wants to change the narrative.

“I’m in an organization that wants me, and wants me to succeed. So there’s a lot more passion when you feel that mentally, you’ve seen it physically as well,” he said. “So there will be a lot more grit and a lot more domination this year.”

Harden was a full participant in Philadelphia’s final day of camp on Friday despite his lingering trade request.

FORT COLLINS (AP) — Behind the doors inside Moby Arena, there’s the blare of a DJ spinning tunes. There’s also the frequent sound of a shrill whistle as new Philly coach Nick Nurse halts practice to offer pointers on the free-flowing offense he’s installing.

Those are the sounds the 76ers hear at the moment.

The noise around disgruntled guard James Harden and his trade demand have been tuned out. Harden’s been steadily ramping up his participation during a training camp held on the campus at Colorado State that came to a close Friday. His teammates insisted his situation hasn’t been a distraction.

For however long he may be with Philadelphia — a week, a month, the trade deadline, all season — the Sixers players aren’t focused on anything other than hoops. They’re learning the nuances of Nurse’s offense, which includes more overall involvement than a year ago when NBA MVP Joel Embiid led the league in points per game (33.1) and Harden in assists per game (10.7).

“Energy’s been great. Everybody’s been great,” forward P.J. Tucker said Friday as the team began making its way east for its first preseason game at Boston on Sunday. “Everybody’s been all smiles and just getting out there and competing and doing what you do in camp. It’s been good.”

The vibe remained loose around camp, too, with a DJ brought in to play some music. They also made their way to Boulder to have dinner with and listen to Colorado coach Deion Sanders.

It masks some of the noise coming from the outside.

In June, Harden picked up his $35.6 million contract option for this season. He was hoping the team would try to trade him. When a deal didn’t happen, he blasted team President Daryl Morey at a promotional event in China and called Morey a liar.

Harden skipped the team’s media day in New Jersey on Monday before arriving in Colorado. Over the last few days, the 10-time All-Star has worked his way into more drills and scrimmages. On Friday, he went through everything, Nurse said. After practice, Harden ran the stairs inside the arena.

“We’re just trying to focus on getting the offense together and defense together, figure out how to play together,” Embiid said Thursday. “We don’t have a lot of time. We want to win and that’s the goal.”

Nurse takes over for Doc Rivers, the former Sixers coach who never led the team past the second round of the playoffs. Nurse has been preaching the little things in training camp — timing, rotation, speed of the feet — in an offense designed to get everyone more involved. He’s adding new defenses, too.

“Just throwing anything out there,” Tucker said with a laugh. “Triangle-and-two or box-and-one or 1-3-1. All this stuff, like college stuff. He’ll try anything.”

Nurse has given Embiid the green light to be “really risky” in the 7-footer’s shot-blocking endeavors. His 1.7 blocks per game last season were seventh in the league.

“I want them to swing at a lot of them,” Nurse said of the big men trying to alter shots. “The more they swing, the more they get.”

Nurse wasn’t sure what his playing patterns would be in the first preseason game against the Celtics. He wasn’t sure about Harden’s availability, either.

Through it all, Harden’s teammates have been supportive.

“I think he’s great for us,” Embiid said of having Harden back with the squad. “Coming in and not being a distraction — not that it was going to be a distraction to us anyway, because we’ve been so focused.”

This group, Embiid said, is different than when the team had a situation arise in 2021 with then-Sixers point guard Ben Simmons. Simmons was kicked out of a practice for being a distraction.

“I don’t think anybody has been distracted about what has been going on,” Embiid maintained.

To find out more about Nurse and his coaching style, the Sixers often turn to Danny Green. The veteran shooting guard/small forward was on the 2018-19 Toronto Raptors squad with Nurse that knocked off the Sixers in the second round on their way to winning an NBA title.

“He’s very laid back. He’s a little bit of Ted Lasso,” Green said of Nurse in reference to the hit television show starring Jason Sudeikis as an ever-optimistic soccer coach. “Has a lot of fun. Outside the box, throws some different things in there. … He’s very encouraging.”

One thing Embiid’s already a big fan of — the wide-open nature of the offense. It’s not centered on just Embiid and Harden.

“I think this is the best way to win,” Embiid said. “I want to be a playmaker. I want to score. I want to get my guys involved. I want to get them open.In Harden’s opinion, nike air jordan 1 bubble gum is his family’s favorite shoe.

“It’s fun playing with the ball moving side-to-side, everybody touching it. That means everybody’s happy.”

The league’s referees will evaluate the new flopping violation against these criteria, and violators will be penalized with a technical foul and an opposing free throw.

Only it won’t be about science, technology, engineering or math. In this case, the focus will be on Secondary, Theatrical, Exaggerated and Movement.

Viewers and fans will get a little bonus with their NBA basketball this season, wrapping their minds around some lessons in STEM.

Only it won’t be about science, technology, engineering or math. In this case, the focus will be on Secondary, Theatrical, Exaggerated and Movement.

Those are the criteria by which the league’s referees will assess new flopping violations, which will carry the penalty of a technical foul and free throw for the other team.

The intent? Get rid of the most outrageous instances of players, either offensively or defensively, reacting to basketball contact as if they’d gotten between Godzilla and his lunch.

“We don’t think there’s going to be a ton of these being called, because of what it is we’re targeting,” said Monty McCutchen, the NBA’s senior vice president, head of referee development and training. “The vast majority of plays that we think are enhancements or embellishments will still be no-calls, the way we do it now. But we want to get rid of the egregious, overt, over-the-top examples.”

Those plays will be signaled manually by a referee putting his hand on his shoulder, then extending that arm. The whistle won’t blow and the violation won’t be assessed, actually, until the “first neutral opportunity.” That is, the next available pause in the action to avoid interrupting any advantage the innocent team might have from the exaggeration.

For example: Picture a defender launching himself backward and flailing on the court trying to draw an imaginary charging foul. The ball handler will be allowed to continue his basketball maneuver, then the technical will be assessed and the free throw shot. If the ball handler were to pause or back up, that’s when the play would be stopped.

“We’re not outwardly trying to punish or embarrass people,” McCutchen said. “We just want this part of the game (to) disappear.”

That’s where the STEM acronym comes in. Initial reactions to contact – getting bumped backwards by an offensive player in the post or flinching/reacting to a tap in the face – won’t merit a call. But secondary reactions to “sell” the contact to the game officials and the fans might.

Same with players who show legit discomfort from a physical moment. That’s not considered theatrical. But going full Fred Sanford feigning a cardiac moment will be. Exaggerated is pretty self-explanatory, with a couple of exceptions.

Head snapping back in reaction to impact with an opposing player? Nope, McCutchen said head snaps alone will not merit flopping whistles. Yelling as if the guy had stepped barefoot on a Lego in the middle of the night? Nope, that won’t do it either.

“Screaming will not factor into the decisions,” he said. “Do we think it’s going to be part of the theatrical and the exaggerated? Yeah, I do. There’s a visual component to this to our fans. The voices don’t pick up as much. So to try to regulate yelling and screaming, it wouldn’t translate to our fan bases very well, to be perfectly honest.”

In other words, it’s very rare that yelling is isolated from flailing, falling, reeling or rolling – that’s why movement is part of the STEM.

“Contact comes with [screaming] because they are trying to draw attention,” McCutchen said. “But I think we do a pretty good job – we don’t give in to [just] yelling a lot.”

Coaches will be watching closely to see how the new rule is applied.

“It’s subjective – every foul is subjective,” Oklahoma City’s Mark Daigneault told NBA.com recently. “I thought [the implementation of] the transition take foul was a really smooth transition and I’m hoping for another smooth transition with this. You kind of knew it when you saw it with the take foul, and I think that will be the case with the flopping.”

Said New York’s Tom Thibodeau: “It probably will be a little harder with flopping. Because everyone views it one way, the defense, but there’s a lot of offensive flopping too. I’m concerned about that. But I think the intent is good, to try to clean things up.”

One way is to think about the range of calls or non-calls as a spectrum. From defensive flops at one extreme to defensive blocking fouls, then no-calls in the vast middle, next to offensive charging calls and offensive flops at the other extreme. More than one violation can be called on a play: A legitimate charging call also triggers a defensive flopping call.

But McCutchen indicated a review of last season’s 1,230 regular-season games revealed a tiny number of plays in which the new rule would have applied.

Of those, McCutchen said, “The league found that about 60% of the plays … were defensive violations. But again, [there were] only a small percentage of plays where this will be called.”

Probably even fewer now as players quickly learn what not to do anymore. As Thibodeau said of the typical learning curve when new rules or interpretations arrive almost annually each fall: “Our players are very good at adapting to how the game’s being called. I’m curious to see it.”

Technical fouls assessed for flopping violations are not considered unsportsmanlike – they’re more like a defensive 3-second tech – so they will not count toward the two-technical limit that triggers game ejection. If they are assessed in-game, there will be no financial penalty for the player. If not, however, and such a violation is found during game review afterward, the standard technical foul fine ($2,000) will be due.

That means during the game, the player’s team is penalized by the free throw and resulting point. After the game, the player pays the price.

More details: Coaches are not permitted to challenge flop calls. But if the referees are reviewing a play for another reason – a legit challenge, a clear-path foul, a flagrant foul, etc. – a flop might be found and assessed.

“Everything is on the table,” McCutchen said. “We can rescind a flop or add a flop.”

The flopping violation is one of three additions or new interpretations to the rule book this season. Another is allowing for a second coach’s challenge after a team correctly challenges a call earlier in the game. Some coaches were reluctant to use the option even on obvious errors, preferring to save it for a possible late-game situation.JORDAN series shoes such as nike air jordan 1 purple and white, and 1985 air jordan 1 black and red are popular in the NBA.

The only difference with a coach’s second triggering of the green light is that he will lose a timeout whether his challenge is successful or not. it’s for game-flow consideration, McCutchen said.

Also, the “rip-through” move – when a player with the ball swings his arms to initiate contact with a defender – will be called differently this season. The league previously had changed the action from a shooting foul to a common foul against the defense. Now if the rip move is going away from the basket – a non-basketball move toward the sideline or the mid-court – it won’t even be treated as a foul. It will be a no-call.

No. 1 pick Victor Wembanyama arrives with sky-high expectations, but that doesn’t mean top rookie honors is a lock.

We know, we know. Victor Wembanyama arrived as one of the most highly touted, hotly anticipated NBA prospects ever. Most of those with whom he shared such advance acclaim — legends and Hall of Famers such as Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Ralph Sampson, Tim Duncan, and LeBron James — lived up to the hype from the start, snagging the Rookie of the Year honor as an early milestone to Springfield, Mass.

Most, but not all of them. Bill Walton, Magic Johnson and Zion Williamson are three can’t-miss phenoms who did miss in their ROY pursuits. For whatever reason — injuries, competition — those can’t-misses did miss.

Wembanyama will not be without rookie rivals. There’s Brandon Miller with the Charlotte Hornets (the No. 2 pick in June) and Scoot Henderson in Portland (who went No. 3 to the Trail Blazers). There are another 11 lottery picks — 26 of the 27 ROY winners dating back to Duncan have come from the lottery. There’s no telling that one won’t thrive in his environment every bit as much or more than Wembanyama with the Spurs. Heck, it’s possible that coach Gregg Popovich and his staff in San Antonio will be so committed to the long-term for the young man’s career and the team’s timeline that they err on the side of caution with his playing time, his usage and his nights off.

Then there’s this: Oklahoma City big man Chet Holmgren is a rookie this season, too. Holmgren’s 2022-23 was wiped out by the Lisfranc injury to his right foot, so his status is intact to challenge Wembanyama for newcomer supremacy. It has played out similarly recently for Blake Griffin and Ben Simmons, players who essentially redshirted their first NBA seasons with injuries, then roared back to ROY success. The Thunder’s 7-footer spent all last season in and around his NBA team, a significant head start on the season, and is said to have added strength to his familiarity and extra motivation for the coming year.

So Wembanyama deserves to be considered the favorite for the Wilt Chamberlain Trophy. But just because he’s a Victor doesn’t mean he’s the winner yet.

The top pick is confirmed! 3 The signing was officially announced, Lillard chose the Lakers, and Durant’s business expanded.

First of all, France did not do well in the Basketball World Cup, even failing to advance to the group stage. But as the host of next year’s Olympics, France automatically gets a spot. French first-round pick Vin Banyama has officially confirmed that he will participate in next year’s Olympics. As a player with great potential, Vinpanyama is highly regarded. We look forward to his performance in the new season.

  In addition, three signings have been announced recently. First, the Celtics agreed to a two-way contract with center Nemias Kota. Kota played in the Kings Development League last season and averaged 17.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game. It’s good enough for Kota to sign a two-way contract, but he’ll need to work harder to get his feet wet with the Celtics.

  Next, the Spurs signed Seth Milner to a two-way contract. Milner played in five games for the Spurs during Summer League, averaging 5.2 points and 3.2 rebounds per game. The Spurs signed Milner in hopes that he would break out and improve. Finally, Big Morris signed with the Mavericks. According to the information, Big Morris’ contract is only $200,000 guaranteed, so we’ll see what he does next.

  In addition, Lillard has been very active lately, not only about the trade rumors, but also participated in a podcast show. In the program, Lillard talked about the competition for the title in the park and made it clear that he supports the Lakers. Lillard is a firm believer that every team in the park has the same chance to compete for a title, so why aren’t other teams winning? He believes that teams are all in the same situation and should not be treated differently.

  In addition, Durant, like James, not only excels on the court, but also conducts many businesses off the court. Recently, Durant’s company expanded its program to develop business strategies for athletes and brands. This is undoubtedly a good move; after all, Durant’s influence is unquestionable. But back to the game itself, Durant needs to lead his team to a championship.

O’Neal: If Kobe Bryant had James’ teammates, he would have already surpassed Jordan. It’s a bit embarrassing that he only has 4 championships.

Basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal recently reignited the buzz by publicly stating that if Kobe Bryant could have the team configuration that LeBron James has, he would have the potential to win 10 championships. This statement immediately caused widespread discussion and concern in the basketball world.

  O’Neill said in an interview, “If Kobe Bryant has the team configuration that LeBron James has, he could win 10 championships.” These words immediately remind people of Kobe’s past in 2008 seeking to join forces with Chris Paul, but was blocked by the league. O’Neill believes that if Kobe can have a strong lineup of teammates like James, he can achieve similar success, and even he can directly surpass Jordan in one fell swoop, and the current James embraced so many years before 4 crowns is indeed a bit shameful.

  However, such comments on James is an insult, because James as a superstar, has excellent basketball IQ, comprehensive technology and leadership. He has had great success with both the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Miami Heat, and has led his teams to multiple championships. It can be said that James’ success is by no means solely dependent on the configuration of his teammates, but stems from his own strength and ability. However, O’Neal seemed to imply that James’ championship success was dependent on the configuration of his powerful teammates rather than his personal ability and effort. Such a statement is undoubtedly disrespectful and demeaning to James. Because James has always proven his worth and strength on the court. Whether in Cleveland or Miami, he has led his team to important victories and honors.

  It is undeniable that the configuration of teammates is crucial to a player’s success. However, we should not minimize James’ abilities and strengths because of this. The leadership and skill he displays in the game make him one of the greatest players of our time. Not only does he possess great physical attributes and well-rounded skills, but he also possesses game intelligence and leadership beyond the norm. Overall Shaquille O’Neal’s comments have sparked widespread controversy but this does not detract from LeBron James’ status and accomplishments in the basketball world. James proved himself to be an overpowering player who used his hard work and ability to win games and lead his team to important victories and honors.

Low profile version of Curry! The Lakers have strengthened and welcomed good news. Pelinka is about to become a god.

In 882 career games so far, Curry has made 50.7 percent of his three-point attempts at a rate of 42.8 percent and 3.8 field goals per game.

  The data shows that Curry’s three-point shooting on the offensive end is dominated by three-point shooting and top efficiency. It is important to note that Curry has the ability to shoot the three-point shot, which most shooters do not have.

  Take the 22-23 season for example.

  On average, 20.9 percent of his 11.5 three-point attempts were made from within four feet of a defender, a 47 percent clip. That means one in five three-point attempts were made on strong shots and hit nearly 50 percent of them.

  Of course, that’s why opponents know Curry is going to shoot threes, but just can’t defend them. Strong shooting ability is too strong.

  For Curry, that team in the league wants it. Of course, the Lakers’ sense of urgency is even stronger. Very important point: James Curry.

  James’s breakthrough, distribution, Curry’s catch and shoot, it can be said that the two are complementary. Only, in line with the principle of “the king does not see the king”, the two can not be the same team.

  In addition, Curry is perfect to fill the Lakers’ shortcomings.

  22-23 season, the Lakers three-point rate of 34.6%. As a comparison, the Pistons 35.1%. That means it’s not as good as a swing team.

  However, in the successive recruitment to Prince, Wood and other tough players after the Lakers reinforcement again welcome good news.

  There is news exposure, because of the contract renewal disagreement, Hilde is ready to like the Pacers to put forward a trade application. For Hilde, I think it is a lower version of Curry.

  Reason one: data. Career so far, 548 games, Hilde three-point shots accounted for 57.7% of the lower three-point rate of 40.2%, an average of 3.1 ball.

  Data point of view, must belong to the top of the league, but according to Curry still have a certain gap.

  Reason 2: three-point characteristics. 22-23 season Hilde averaged 8.5 three-point attempts, which accounted for 10.1% of the shots are within 4 feet of the defender when shooting, hitting rate of 30.7%.

  Statistically speaking, does not have the ability to shoot strong threes like Curry.

  Combine the two, and the underachiever is more about efficiency and not having a strong three-point shot. However, even so Hield is also available as a sharpshooter.

  For the Lakers, the attraction for Hield is opportunity + exposure.

  Opportunity is good, after all, the top scorer in that team will be reused. The deeper meaning of this point of exposure is to increase the influence.

  When the influence reaches a certain level, this big contract is also water to the canal. Such as the previous Monk, this summer’s Schroeder.

  That is to say, in the Hilde attractive Lakers Lakers or very expected to get the former.

  If so, then I think Pelinka can be sealed God.

  On the one hand, this summer on the Lakers for all-round reinforcement; on the other hand, almost every new player is very cost-effective.

  That is to say, do their jobs at the same time will maximize the benefits.

Reinventing Dynasty Teams! US media reveals 10 heavy trade scenarios for Golden State Warriors

Warriors shake up and reorganize: Myles Turner strengthens interior defense

  The Golden State Warriors are coming off a 21-22 championship season, only to suffer a setback in the 2023 playoffs. Despite the core trio of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green performing consistently throughout the season, injuries and chemistry issues have left the Warriors struggling in the postseason. Faced with the improved strength of other teams in the West, including the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers, as well as the retained roster of the defending champion Denver Nuggets, the Warriors will have to make a move to stand out in the West.

  In order to shore up their interior defense, the Warriors could explore some heavy-duty trade options. One option is for Myles Turner to join the Golden State Warriors, while Jonathan Kuminga, Gary Payton II and Kevon Looney, along with a 2028 first-round pick, would be sent to the Indiana Pacers. Turner is one of the best modern centers in the NBA, excelling in capping, rim protection and shooting ability. His addition would give the Warriors a great shot blocker and rim protector to bolster their interior defense. Turner can also space the floor on offense with his outside shooting, a perfect fit for the Warriors’ fast-paced, space-oriented style of play. The Pacers, on the other hand, acquire a young and talented group of players as well as future draft picks that will be crucial to their rebuilding efforts.

  Another option would be for the Cavs to acquire Ayton of the Phoenix Suns in a trade, while Andrew Wiggins, Kevon Looney, Moses Moody and a 2028 first-round pick would be sent to the Suns. Ayton is a rising star with the ability to serve as a starting inside presence, averaging 18.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per game. He could provide the Warriors with a substantial upgrade inside, making up for the Warriors’ interior weaknesses in recent seasons through offensive scoring, rebounding protection and rim protection. His presence will allow the Warriors to be more versatile on the offensive end of the floor and can complement Curry and Thompson’s ability to shoot from outside. Wiggins has been excellent on offense, but he falls slightly short of Ayton in terms of scoring ability. The lineup of Curry, Thompson, Green and Ayton will make it difficult for opponents to defend.

  In addition, the Warriors can also acquire All-Star Ingram through a trade. In the deal, the Warriors would send Wiggins, Kuminga, Moody, and first-round picks in 2025 and 2027, while the New Orleans Pelicans would acquire Ingram. Ingram has been excellent in New Orleans, averaging 24.7 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game last season. He can play like Kevin Durant, handling the ball as well as shooting a high percentage from the field. The addition of Ingram will give the Warriors a strong scoring presence to round out their offense. In addition, Ingram is young and has potential, and his presence could help the Warriors continue to be competitive and be a building block for the future. As for the Pelicans, they would be acquiring Wiggins, Kuminga, Moody, and future draft picks, which would help them build a playoff team around Zion Williamson.

  The last option would be for the Cavs to acquire Paul George in a trade, while Wiggins, Kuminga, Moody, and first round picks in 2026 and 2028 would be sent to the Los Angeles Clippers. George is a versatile two-way player who excels at perimeter scoring and defense. Last season, George averaged 23.8 points and six rebounds and five assists per game before his injury. His addition will allow the Warriors to make a big jump in perimeter scoring and defense. A lineup of Curry, Thompson, George and Green would be very competitive.

In addition to the above trade scenarios, the Warriors could also trade for the Toronto Raptors’ Pascal Siakam, while Kerry