The Golden State Warriors just won the NBA title with JaVale McGee as their center. No, he wasn’t starting but he did play a vital role in their epic season. However, this is nothing new to the Warriors. This is the same team who won a title with a washed up former top pick in Andrew Bogut who played an astounding 21 minutes while averaging 5 points and seven rebounds per game. Many thought the Warriors were lucky but then they did it again this year with Zaza Pachulia. Zaza averaged six points and six rebounds in 18 minutes per. But the surprise of the season was the play of backup– JaVale McGee.
Throughout his career, McGee was an underachiever. Here was a player who had the tools to be a force in the NBA but too many boneheaded decisions robbed him of his rightful spot. But then the Warriors came calling and McGee was able to keep a level head while showing what made him to be so special in the first place.
McGee didn’t set the league on fire with his play but he may have done enough to earn a starting spot in the Warriors rotation.
McGee averaged six points and three rebounds in only 10 minutes of action but come playoff time– it was McGee doing the heavy lifting at the Center position. He didn’t post nightly double-doubles but the energy he provided on both ends of the floor helped the Warriors. Pachulia is more laid back while McGee gives the team that shot of adrenaline they need.
By starting McGee with Draymond Green, it will give the Warriors their best defensive tandem in the post. McGee may not be as polished as Pachulia on the offensive end but if given the chance– he can put the ball in the basket.
The main reason for giving the nod to McGee is simly for defensive purposes. The offense is handled with Green, Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant. What the team needs is an offensive rebounding threat. Throughout his career, McGee has averaged two offensive rebounds per game but has done so with only playing 18 minutes per. If Steve Kerr were to put him on the floor for 28 minutes, the Warriors would see an increase of production from a position they have ignored for the past three seasons.
There is no way to argue with the results but what would happen if they were to actually put trust in that C position? Imagine how dangerous the Warriors could be. McGee is not your conventional player but the Warriors are not your conventional team. To pair these two together would be magic. It’s just a matter of McGee fighting for a spot that I feel is rightfully his. He offers the team a better chance on the rebounding and defensive end and if his play in the Fnals was any indication– then he’s not running fromt the challenges.