Warriors’ Mike Dunleavy seen scouting intriguing 2024 NBA Draft prospect in France

Warriors’ Mike Dunleavy seen scouting intriguing 2024 NBA Draft prospect in France

What happens this offseason for the Golden State Warriors will dictate both their immediate and long-term futures. General manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. and his front office have their hands full with decisions to make about Klay Thompson, Chris Paul, Andrew Wiggins, and Jonathan Kuminga. Before doing anything with these players, the Warriors will be tasked with figuring out their plans for the 2024 NBA Draft. Although many have called this year’s draft weaker than those of the last few years, there are still a handful of intriguing names at the top of the draft board.

One of those prospects that many teams are looking to get more information about is French forward Zaccharie Risacher. Roughly 6’10” on the wing, Risacher is a crafty offensive-minded player who has a really strong feel for the game despite recently turning 19 years old. After the success Victor Wembanyama has had as the first overall pick out of France, many have been quick to label Risacher as the next Frenchman to make a splash in the NBA.

Risacher, who many expect to be one of the first names off the board in June’s draft, plays for JL Bourg of the LNB Pro A. With Risacher still playing his season in Europe, Dunleavy and some other members of the Warriors’ front office were in France recently to get a closer look at the draft prospect. The European club sent out a picture of Dunleavy watching Risacher from the stands.

In a total of 31 games with JL Bourg this season, Risacher has averaged 10.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game while shooting 43.6 percent from the floor and 34.9 percent from three-point range. He registered 10 points and eight rebounds in front of Dunleavy and the Warriors’ front office.

Although the Warriors are scouting Risacher, will they even have any chance to potentially snag one of the better players in this year’s draft class?

Warriors’ 2024 NBA Draft position

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

If the Warriors are to have any chance of landing Zaccharie Risacher in this year’s draft, they are going to have to get lucky with some ping pong balls on May 12, when the NBA Draft Lottery takes place in Chicago, Illinois.

The Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards each hold a 14 percent chance of securing the top pick in this year’s draft, as the Charlotte Hornets hold a 13.3 percent chance, followed by the Portland Trail Blazers at 13.2 percent. The Warriors, who were the best team during the regular season out of the 14 lottery teams this year, have just a 0.7 percent chance of securing the first pick in the draft. They have just a 3.4 percent chance of getting a pick inside the top four.

Whether or not the Warriors get one of their only ping pong balls chosen is something that could shake up the entirety of the 2024 NBA Draft because Golden State is not supposed to keep their pick this year. The Warriors initially traded their 2024 first-round pick with top-four protections to the Memphis Grizzlies in their 2019 trade for Andre Iguodala. This pick was then dealt to the Boston Celtics in the Kristaps Porzingis-Marcus Smart three-team trade, followed by being shipped to the Portland Trail Blazers in last summer’s deal for Jrue Holiday.

The Trail Blazers own the rights to the Warriors’ first-round selection this year, assuming Golden State doesn’t get lucky and end up with one of the first four picks. In this case, the Warriors would not have a selection in this year’s draft until the 52nd overall pick in the second round.

Dunleavy and members of the Warriors’ front office getting a closer look at Risacher is likely something they are doing for a couple of reasons. In addition to the slim possibility of ending up with a top-four pick, the Warriors are expected to be active in trade talks. A potential trade involving Wiggins, Kuminga, Paul, or someone else could possibly result in the Warriors ending up with a lottery pick in this year’s draft.

It never hurts to get a look at some of the better players in the NBA Draft, and that is exactly what Dunleavy is doing here with Risacher.

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