Warriors F Jonathan Kuminga

Warriors F Jonathan Kuminga


Warriors F Jonathan Kuminga

For a team that has not exactly reeled in a major star piece, the Golden State Warriors have been as active as anyone in the NBA’s offseason market here as we approach mid-July, with three new players coming in and two Hall of Fame veterans (Klay Thompson and Chris Paul) exiting stage left. But the hope remains that they can change their luck on the star front, as they continue their pursuit of Jazz big man Lauri Markkanen, among other potential top scorers.

One complicating factor might well be what, exactly, the Warriors would be willing to give up in a trade. While other executives have noted that the Dubs do not want to deal away 21-year-old rising star Jonathan Kuminga, and would not include him in trade discussions, coach Steve Kerr threw some cold reality on that idea.

Speaking on the Willard and Dibs show on 95.7 The Game in the Bay Area this week, Kerr made clear that for every team in the NBA, just about everyone on the roster is available for a trade.

That, surprisingly enough, includes Kuminga.

Warriors Would Not Trade Stephen Curry, But Are Open to Just About Any Other Move

Here’s how Kerr answered a question that began with a reference to Kuminga having survived in Golden State through his first three seasons despite a raft of trade rumors over the years.

“First of all, you have to understand, there’s very few players in the league who are not talked about in trade discussions. Steph Curry is not being discussed in trade talks. Everybody else is,” Kerr told the program.

“And if you went down the list of NBA teams, the Lakers probably are not talking to anybody about LeBron, you know? Everybody’s got maybe one or two guys who, they are off the table. So the vast majority of the players in the NBA, the players are constantly going to be discussed in trade talks, because everyone’s trying to do the same thing, which is improve their team.”

The Warriors clearly have a need to continue to improve. They were a 46-win team last year, which got them into the play-in tournament, but a potential trip to the playoffs was cut short by a loss to Sacramento. Steph Curry is still in place, but the Warriors badly need a No. 2 scorer for him.

Forward Andrew Wiggins is one of the Dubs’ big potential trade pieces. Young players like Moses Moody and Brandin Podziemski could be, too. The Warriors have salary fillers like Kevon Looney on hand, too. And they could trade up to two future first-round picks.

Jonathan Kuminga a Big Question Mark in 2023-24

But Kuminga is the big question mark. He had a breakthrough year in 2023-25, averaging 16.1 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists. He shot 52.9% from the field but needs to improve at the 3-point line (32.1%), The Warriors certainly do not want to trade Kuminga.

“With JK, we love the strides he has taken,” Kerr said. “He’s got room to grow, which is exciting. We’re working with him, he’s been great, he is having a good summer. I am excited about coaching him next year, and seeing how much better he can get.”

And that’s the dilemma the Warriors face in making a trade. They could send away Kuminga as part of a package for a proven NBA star, or they could gamble that Kuminga is ready to take a leap to stardom with a bigger role in the offense this season now that Thompson is gone.

Either way, the trade market figures to move slowly around the NBA from here. Kuminga can count on hearing his name in chatter for the foreseeable future.

Sean Deveney is a veteran sports reporter covering the NBA, NFL and MLB for Heavy.com. He has written for Heavy since 2019 and has more than two decades of experience covering the NBA, including 17 years as the lead NBA reporter for the Sporting News. Deveney is the author of 7 nonfiction books, including “Fun City,” “Before Wrigley became Wrigley,” and “Facing Michael Jordan.” More about Sean Deveney

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