1. Warriors can pair Trae Young and Stephen Curry
The Golden State Warriors are a franchise in free fall. Only a couple years removed from the fourth championship of the Stephen Curry era, the Warriors are coming apart at the seams. Curry continues to produce at his standard MVP level, but the veteran core around him is fading fast. Klay Thompson can't close games. Andrew Wiggins and Chris Paul are trade bait. Even Draymond Green, for all his brilliance, is struggling to consistently impact winning the way he once could.
There are several options for Golden State. They can ride it out and let the current era die with a whimper. They can jump ship and embrace a full-blown rebuild centered on Jonathan Kuminga and Brandin Podziemski. Or, the Warriors can push all their chips in and make one last genuine run at the championship. Golden State has enough trade ammo to land a star. Young isn't the most natural fit on paper, but he could be just what the Warriors need to revive their lost season.
He won't come cheap, of course. Landing a 25-year-old star with four years left on his contract takes a lot. The Hawks would demand the heart of Golden State's youth movement, in addition to cleaning out their draft picks cache. Chris Paul serves as salary filler. In return, the Warriors plant Young next to Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson in the backcourt. It's a bold experiment, but it's hard not to engineer an effective offense around three of the best shooters in recent NBA history.
Young can learn a whole lot from Curry when it comes to working without the ball and leveraging his 3-point gravity. Meanwhile, Young gives the Warriors another source of much-needed shot creation — a line of adrenaline to invigorate an offense on the ropes. His range as a pull-up shooter gives defenses enough trouble in Atlanta. Letting Young size up defenders and poke around screens while Curry and Thompson are flying around off-ball should be illegal.
The defensive concerns with Curry and Young in the backcourt are real, but Curry isn't the pushover his detractors think he is and Young has been truly committed to generating more stops at the point of attack this season. It's so crazy, it just might work. At the very least, it's a fun experiment.