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#pounditTuesday, May 21, 2024

Warriors could trade for top defensive player?

Steve Kerr looks on from the sideline

Jan 18, 2020; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr stands on the sideline during the fourth quarter against the Orlando Magic at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

They say that “defense wins championships,” and the Golden State Warriors, who know a thing or two about winning championships themselves, may be taking that advice to heart.

Keith Pompey of The Philly Inquirer reports this week that the Warriors have had internal discussions about trading for Philadelphia 76ers guard Matissse Thybulle. The Warriors are said to like Thybulle as a defensive stopper. However, Pompey mentions that Thybulle is also drawing trade interest from the Sacramento Kings.

The 25-year-old Thybulle is a back-to-back All-Defensive Team selection who is still on his rookie contract (but will become a restricted free agent in the summer). While Thybulle is elite at what he does in stopping the ball on the perimeter and mucking up passing lanes, he is only playing a bit part for the 76ers this year. Thybulle has largely been out of head coach Doc Rivers’ rotation, seeing just 12.1 minutes per game.

The Warriors are a middling defensive team this season (16th in defensive efficiency, per ESPN). They also have several patchy spots on that end of the floor, especially since Klay Thompson is not as quick as he used to be while Jordan Poole is a cone-shaped object defensively. Though Golden State has found some exciting new lineup tweaks lately, a player like Thybulle could give them the jolt they need to string together another title-caliber defense.

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