Grading a wild Warriors-Hawks swap to put Dejounte Murray next to Steph Curry

Can the Golden State Warriors revive their title odds with Dejounte Murray?
Andrew Wiggins, Dejounte Murray, Draymond Green
Andrew Wiggins, Dejounte Murray, Draymond Green / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

The Golden State Warriors were swiftly eliminated from the Play-In Tournament by the Sacramento Kings, a sobering reminder that all dynasties eventually crumble. Stephen Curry is still a one-man juggernaut — the greatest offensive force of a generation — but even he cannot sustain a contender by his lonesome.

We have seen the Warriors' supporting cast crumble into dust. Klay Thompson can't defend anymore. Draymond Green is still an impact defender, but the offensive shortcomings are more noticeable than ever. Andrew Wiggins spent much of last season M.I.A., while Kevon Looney went from one of the NBA's most underrated starters to borderline unplayable.

There were bright spots, such as Jonathan Kuminga's long-overdue leap and Brandin Podziemski's impressive rookie campaign. Trayce Jackson-Davis looks the part of a long-term rotation cog — maybe even a starter. The future isn't completely bleak. Golden State even owns its draft picks, which can't be said for other floundering "contenders" in their division.

Still, if the Warriors want to milk the last years of Stephen Curry, change is necessary. And frankly, the Warriors probably owe it to Steph to try. Curry is a top-10 player with the ability to elevate those in his orbit. A few minor tweaks could put Golden State back on the map.

That said, the wrong move could soil the Warriors' present and future. A new trade proposal from Bleacher Report's Greg Swartz does not have Golden State's best interests at heart.

Warriors-Hawks trade to pair Dejounte Murray and Stephen Curry in Golden State


The Atlanta Hawks should call this into the league office before Golden State has the opportunity to say "SIKE!"

The Warriors should laugh Atlanta off the phone.

There's a difference between sacrificing to win now and completely ignoring the future. Golden State should be open to moving Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody for the right price, but in this scenario, we are collectively overvaluing Dejounte Murray way too much. I'd struggle to part with the unprotected 2025 first-round pick — not to mention the burgeoning star, another 21-year-old with upside, and a rotation-level wing.

Atlanta is getting an unprotected pick from a team currently in the lottery, as well as three immediate rotation pieces. Kuminga became more or less a full-time starter for the Warriors last season, averaging 16.1 points and 4.8 rebounds on .529/.321/.746 splits. He is 21 years old — a tier-one athlete with 6-foot-9 size, bully-ball strength, and elite downhill burst. As the skill development catches up with his athletic tools, Kuminga has bonafide All-Star upside. He is untouchable in Dejounte Murray talks, with all due respect.

Murray has been a disaster in Atlanta. The numbers are there — 22.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.4 assists on .459/.363/.794 splits — but it all feels like a mirage. Empty calories. He's the 40 points on 40 shots guy. Murray once hung his hat on defense, but he has been consistently below average on that end with the Hawks. He's a fine 3-point shooter, but he needs the ball in his hands. He's not an outlier-great passer, he leans heavily on contested mid-range pull-ups, and he consistently clashes with Trae Young.

The 27-year-old would find a more amenable backcourt partner in Steph Curry, but the Warriors' success has long been rooted in Curry and Draymond running the show. Handing the keys to Murray would mark a drastic shift in the chemical balance of the offense, and probably not for the best. Murray has been largely unwilling to embrace the small off-ball efforts in Atlanta. His best season in San Antonio saw him post a 40.6 assist percentage. He needs to run the show. Murray is stylistically built to operate as the primary offensive fulcrum, but it's hard to imagine a team winning games with Murray as the No. 1 option.

If he were still a great defender, that would change the calculus. If Murray can generate stops and handle the tough assignments on the perimeter, that would help the Warriors a lot. Golden State does need more shot creation, too. The general idea behind this trade is solid. A big, defense-first point guard who can create his own offense would help a lot. Unfortunately, the idea of Murray has often surpassed the actual product. He would suck up too much oxygen without a suitable return on investment.

If Golden State can get him for a fraction of the price, maybe. But once Kuminga and unprotected first-round picks start entering the conversation, Mike Dunleavy Jr. and the Warriors front office should hang up the phone and block the Hawks' number.

Warriors grade: D-
Hawks grade: A+

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