The Golden State Warriors have gotten off to a rocky start to the new season. Will deciding to keep their latest addition pay off in the long run?
The Warriors currently have several injured power forwards and centers, which is in Chriss’ favor; however, once those players return, will he have trouble earning playing time as he has so far?
In seven appearances this season, Chriss has yet to show promise. Most of the reasoning behind a lack of production is due to his current place in Kerr’s rotation. In his only start this season in a loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Chriss recorded 10 points, four rebounds, three assists and four steals, while going 3-for-7 overall and 4-for-6 at the foul line in 23 minutes of action.
So far this season, Chriss is averaging 5.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 0.4 blocks and 0.9 steals on 44.4 percent shooting overall, while he is 1-for-3 from 3-point range and 12-for-14 (85.7 percent) at the free throw line in 14.3 minutes per game.
With rookie Eric Paschall’s recent surges of production, Chriss’ playing time moving forward is in jeopardy.
While Chriss thrived during the preseason and earned his contract with the Warriors, he is still fighting for more than 15 minutes each game.
Draymond Green’s recent injury would have been Chriss’ best opportunity — if it wasn’t spoiled by the emergence of Paschall.
In order for Chriss to fit into Kerr’s rotation, he needs to be efficient on both ends of the floor and really stand out like he did during the preseason. Chriss must show Kerr that he can consistently thrive off pick-and-rolls and alley-oops with occasional outside shooting.
Once Green, Kevon Looney, and Alen Smailagić return, which will be certainly by the end of November or in December at the latest, Chriss will be completely out of the rotation unless he proves otherwise.
Chriss’ best case-scenario is earning minutes at the center position, since the Warriors have a total of five power forwards and two centers on their roster.
Kerr will have an important decision to make when all five of his power forwards are healthy and ready to play.
As of today, Chriss has not proven himself nor has he been given enough of an opportunity to do so, which could lead to a trade before the trade deadline. A trade can’t happen right away, as Chriss can’t be moved before Dec. 30, per Hoops Rumors, because of the conditions surrounding his signing and the date upon which he signed.
In order to give the Warriors a chance at staying in the playoff hunt, Kerr needs to utilize his versatile roster and make a move like using Smailagić (upon his return) at the small forward position. Making necessary adjustments with such a versatile roster would give Chriss more opportunities to prove himself throughout the rest of the season.