The Golden State Warriors are a team in transition, and they will be armed with the No. 7 overall pick at the 2012 Draft. While there are a few areas of concern on their roster to address, it appears the team will focus on adding a big man to build around for years to come with their first pick.
Quite a few names have been linked to Golden State in recent days, but this latest mock draft from Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated has them taking Jared Sullinger. After two strong seasons at Ohio State, Sullinger is one of the more promising post players available. He comes in at 6'9 and 280lbs.
While the Warriors are thrilled that a top-seven slot means they don't have to send the pick to Utah, I'm sensing a collective apathy regarding the depth of the talent pool at this point. As such, it is entirely possible that they trade the pick and possibly move back. Still, Sullinger would help the Warriors with their longs-tanding rebounding problem while adding another capable scorer behind David Lee and Andrew Bogut down low. Sullinger improved his physique last offseason but conditioning remains a concern. He averaged 17.5 points and 10.2 rebounds as a sophomore, nearly identical numbers to his freshman season. Kentucky forward Terrence Jones is considered a candidate here as well.
Sullinger probably lacks the upside to become an all-star -- something a guy like Perry Jones III or Andre Drummond features -- but is probably among the safest bets of big men in the first round. As Amick mentions in the blurb, conditioning has been a question in the past with Sullinger, but he should be able to get himself in shape with the help of an elite training staff at the NBA level.
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