My Worst Take: Examining the Andrew Wiggins trade after three games

Was signing Wiggins really the death of the Warriors future? LOL

We just witnessed NBA Twitter lose their collective minds over the Warriors rescuing Andrew Wiggins, a 24-year old former #1 pick, from the struggle that is Minnesota Timberwolves basketball.

A hopeful few of us held judgment out of:

A.) Faith in the Warriors front office.

B.) The knowledge that Wiggins is joining three future hall-of-famers in their primes.

But a great many skeptical members of Dub Nation immediately morphed into Nick Wright.

And that’s okay. Maybe you’re right: perhaps Wiggins has doomed the Warriors forever and we can never trust an ownership group that moved the Dubs out of Oakland.

Then again, maybe you’re dead wrong and you’ll have to beg the forgiveness of Warriors GM Bob Myers at the title parade next year.

Either way, this is what makes sports banter fun: debating future outcomes and gambling one way or another.

In the spirit of that, we here at LGW have created a safe space (not really) for us to all share our worst basketball takes. I hope we can all laugh, cry, and revel in the knowledge that basketball can be a hard sport to predict.

Today we’ll touch on our very own Duby Dub Dubs, but in the future we’ll have revelations like when Eric Apricot initially believed the Warriors erred in firing Mark Jackson, and me circa 2012 idiotically thinking the Warriors should have cut bait on Stephen Curry because of his glass ankles #forgivemesteph.

Now here’s Duby Dub Dubs being brought forth before the tribunal to confess his basketball prognostication sins.

“The Andrew Wiggins deal was so bad that the Warriors are done contending”

Daniel:

Okay so here’s the timeline. When the Wiggins trade happened, our good buddy Duby was staunchly and vocally against it in our Slack chat. He felt Wiggins was a bad player on a bad contract. Fair enough.

But when Nick Wright echoed those exact same sentiments and got put on blast by “We Believe” legend Matt Barnes, Duby suddenly cosigned Barnes and claimed Barnes was his spirit animal.

Huh?

Duby Dub Dubs:

Ok, I’ll own it. I was incredibly low on the Wiggins trade; but I’d also argue that it’s not my actual worst take - just the most recent. 

It was me that was at the epicenter of this article idea. After attempting to pile on Nick Wright (who got joyously blasted by ex-Warrior Barnes)…

…I was eviscerated by Thomas “Dr. Tom” Bevilacqua, who started posting screen grabs while I was in the middle of my backpedaling attempts. I was emotional, but even with perspective, I’m not sure how far I would back off some of these quotes.   

Daniel:

Anytime your conclusions line up with Nick Wright’s ideology, it’s a dead giveaway that you’ve been spending too much time staring at BballRef spreadsheets.

Duby:

I just hate Nick Wright so much. 

But look, in my defense, if Wiggins does work out here, it will be because he’s been able to play significantly better than he ever has in Minnesota. And that was the basis of my initial reaction. Wiggins has been average, at best. A replacement-level NBA player.

Can he play better here? Certainly (and early returns are promising) but Lacob has even said that the big reason for the trade was the draft pick, not necessarily Wiggins. We went from Durant and Iguodala to Wiggins at the wing, and it’s pretty wild that I’m getting lit up for saying that’s a change that is going to significantly impact our championship aspirations. 

Eric:

Of all of Duby’s Bad Takes, is this really The Worst Duby Take we’re going with?  Because I’m not sure it’s clear it’s a bad take yet. I mean, in Slack I point blank rejected a trade of D-Lo for Wiggins plus three first round draft picks. In retrospect I completely overestimated D-Lo’s market value.

On the other hand, having Nick Wright on your side is basically disqualifying.

Duby:

Extremely fair point on Wright there. I have no rebuttal, nor any sort of defense. 

Daniel:

“I just do not see a way this roster contends for anything” was Duby’s exact quote. If you don’t think the Splash Bros and Dray + Wiggs can contend for ANYTHING then yeah, Matt Barnes needs to come to your house and knock on your door.

Eric:

Okay, I agree, that was an overreaction take. Sorry, Dubs, you have to go back in the box. But we have to have him up for some other Bad Take later, because I don’t think this take is as bad as our two Worst Takes (he said with mysterious foreshadowing).

Duby:

Was it a freak out? Probably. Alright. Yes. 

But we’ve got to understand that the Splash Brothers and Draymond already needed help [screen shot me Doctor Tom!]. Even before Kevin Durant’s arrival, there were huge players, from Andrew Bogut, to Andre Iguodala, to Shaun Livingston. A lot of those guys were integral to the success of the team. 

We’ve got $134 million tied up in our core four (which now includes Wiggins) plus Kevon Looney. That’s already over the cap ($116M). Can the team win it all? Sure, maybe. But I am dubious that carrying that much extra salary for a player like Wiggins will hurt us. 

Also, just to explain myself a bit, I had really thought D’Angelo Russell’s contract, plus a pick or three would net us a big star (like Embiid). That was clearly wrong. And another miscalculation on my part was the net value difference between Wiggins on his deal, and Russell on his, may not have been nearly the massive gulf I had thought it was. 

Daniel:

Question, did Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen win all six titles with the exact same roster?

First roster is the 1991 Bulls, second roster is the 1996 bulls. Peep the MASSIVE roster turnover. We’re looking at dynastic runs here.

Let’s go to the Spurs 2003 title, their first with Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker, and compare that with their last in 2014.

I’m pretty sure the Warriors’ front office is hip to the importance of constantly adding pieces around their core, especially considering Steve Kerr was a member of those aforementioned dynasties. #DYNASTIES

Eric:

You know, I bet there were similar takes about Rodman joining the squad and destroying their chances. NOT THAT I’M COMPARING WIGGINS TO RODMAN, DON’T SCREENSHOT ME BRO

Duby:

Who’s our Kukoc? Where’s our Steve Kerr? Rodman? Ron Harper was solid. That’s all I’m saying is that carrying all that extra salary ballast with Wiggins means a whole lot of minimum contract players that we’ll be counting on in the playoffs. I had really wanted a major name for Russell - but instead we got a pick (in two or three years) and a Wiggins. 

Eric:

Zach Snacks Norvell is gonna be our Steve Kerr!!

Daniel:

Lmao! If we were ever going to find those auxiliary pieces at a cheap rate, it’d be during a developmental season like we’re having now, with multiple first and second round draft picks coming in the near future. 

We added Chriss/Wiggins, effectively two young, former high draft picks to this team this season. You’ve personally gushed over Chriss’ rising impact on this squad! Oh yeah, I’m also betting that Wiggins has value as a fourth option next to the greatest two shooters of all time and one of the premiere point-forwards of this generation.

The pieces are right in front of us I believe, and if not, the Warriors have proven they aren’t shy about doing some wheeling and dealing.

Duby:

I guess that comes back to my point though. You think this roster, as is, is winning a ring? Or will there be some other move? I would still argue the latter, even while backing off my take that there’s no possible way this team wins it all as currently constructed. 

Daniel:

“no possible way this team contends for anything”**** hahaha.

Duby:

¯\_(ツ)_/¯   PROVE ME WRONG, WIGGINS!!

Also, I’m really thankful that this Wiggins slander has overshadowed how upset I was when we traded away Ekpe Udoh, or my happiness at the bargain contract we locked up Andris Biedrins with.