For being an undrafted rookie in the NBA, Juwan Staten may have landed in one of the best situations possible for him.
When we last saw the Golden State Warriors, we saw Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and company hoisting the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy after downing LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavs in the NBA Finals. WVU legend Jerry West was one of the architects for that team. His son, Jonnie, helps to run their D-League team in Santa Cruz.
The next time we see them, Staten will be alongside after signing a 1-year non-guaranteed contract worth around $525K earlier this month.
After going undrafted, Staten signed to play for the Sacramento Kings Summer League team. He was limited during the session in Las Vegas due to a knee injury that caused him to have a minor procedure to correct.
With plenty of scorers on the roster, the Warriors are not going to look for Staten to provide a scoring punch off the bench, but rather see how he handles the running of the team while he’s on the floor and if his terrific defensive prowess translates to the NBA where the players are bigger, faster and stronger. They want to see if he can lock down opposing guards.
He will be competing with the likes of Shaun Livingston, Brandon Rush, Ben Gordon, Ian Clarke and Chris Babb for a spot on the roster. The Warriors will enter training camp with 13 guaranteed contracts on the roster, leaving two spots open.
Should Staten not make the regular season roster, and provided another team doesn’t pick him up off the waiver wire, he could find a spot with the Santa Cruz Warriors of the D-League where Jonnie West is an associate GM. There, he could develop his game and take some of the lessons learned from Curry, Thompson and head coach Steve Kerr.