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sport / / NBCSBA: Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff hopes

o NBCSBA: Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff hopesRobin Miller

NBCSBA: Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff hopes


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From: robin.mi...@invalid.invalid (Robin Miller)
Subject: NBCSBA: Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff
Date: Fri, 22 Mar 2024 00:15:38 -0400
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 by: Robin Miller - Fri, 22 Mar 2024 04:15 UTC

Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff hopes

By Michael Wagaman

• Published March 20, 2024

SAN FRANCISCO – After an up-and-down start to the 2023-24 NBA season,
Andrew Wiggins is rounding into the form many Warriors fans expected and
looking a lot more like the athlete that played a big role in the team
capturing the 2022 championship.

Wiggins put together one of his best all-around games of the year
against the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night, scoring 22 points,
snatching 10 rebounds and dishing out three assists with one block in
Golden State’s 137-116 victory at Chase Center.

Unlike previous games when Wiggins seemed reticent to take his shots, he
was very active against the Grizzlies, going 9-for-14 from the floor and
nailing four of his six 3-point tries.

It’s an encouraging sign for the Warriors, who have 14 games remaining
in the regular season to strengthen their NBA playoff positioning.

“Tonight I thought we did a better job of getting him the ball in some
situations,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “There are games where he
gets a little lost in the shuffle. I have to do a better job of putting
him in positions where he can attack downhill.

"I thought that happened tonight, and he did a great job of recognizing
what the defense was doing. He made several really nice passes. He
rebounded well. Just a great night from Wiggs.”

While Jonathan Kuminga has captured the majority of headlines with his
steady surge throughout the season, getting and keeping Wiggins going
might be the key to Golden State’s postseason hopes.

Wiggins was smooth all night. He was very fluid on offense and came up
big on the defensive end as well.

He provided one of the game’s best plays when he was backpedaling under
the Warriors’ basket and hauled in a long pass from Draymond Green, then
flipped the ball into the hoop around a pair of Grizzlies defenders.

In short, Wiggins looked almost completely opposite from the player who
averaged 12.7 points in the Warriors’ first 51 games.

The domino effect, Green said, is beneficial to the entire Golden State

“It helps everybody because with Wiggs’ aggressiveness, with his
athleticism, when he’s driving to the rim, he can make defenses collapse
or he’s going to go finish,” Green said. “He’s been shooting the ball
extremely well.

Wiggins' recent uptick in scoring and shooting came after he returned
from a four-game absence when he was away from the team for personal

Wiggins didn’t go into details about why he left, but his brother, Nick,
hinted to it in an Instagram post earlier Wednesday. Nick had been
playing for a team in Indonesia but decided to step away because of
“serious personal issues back home.”

Since coming back, however, Wiggins has been playing some of his best
basketball of the season.

In his last five games, Wiggins is shooting at a 58.6-percent clip
(34-for-58) and has been more aggressive in taking his shots rather than
looking to pass, like he was earlier this season.

“When you play on a team like this, it’s very easy to play on this team
and stop shooting,” Green said. “With all our action you’re going to
find someone that can shoot. So it’s very easy to fall into that, ‘Ah, I
need to look for those guys.’ It’s something that you have to be
conscious of and try not to fall into that. When we fall into that, at
times, it hurts us more than it helps us.

“With him being aggressive that way, it’s just another option for us
that we can go to that can initiate offense, that we can run
pick-and-rolls for, that we can go to in the block. You can just allow
him to create something. He’s more than capable of creating offense for
any team.”

Wiggins might also hold the key to the Warriors’ hopes of making a run
in the playoffs.

“As long as he’s taking the shots, he’s a good shooter, he’s going to
make a good amount of them,” Green said. “It’s just a matter of making
sure he’s being aggressive and taking those shots. When he’s taking
those shots and playing with that aggressiveness, we’re capable of
winning championships.”

sport / / NBCSBA: Wiggs rounding into form just in time for Warriors' playoff hopes


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