Warriors 2022 training camp preview: Moses Moody’s steady presence

What Warriors fans can expect from Moody in 2022-23 season originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

For how giddy the Warriors were to grab Jonathan Kuminga with the No. 7 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, many were just as happy to have Moses Moody land in their laps at No. 14 overall.

There are no bounds to Kuminga’s ceiling. His floor, however, can be a bit dirty and disheveled. The opposite is true for Moody.

His floor is squeaky clean. Everything is in order. There isn’t any trash laying around or water rings on the coffee table. Of course, he has a coaster.

That doesn’t mean he can’t take his game to higher levels, which is exactly what the Warriors expect Moody to do in Year 2. It’s a big reason why they could let Gary Payton II walk, no matter how much the wound of his loss hurt.

Moody won’t always be on highlight reels. He will make winning plays, easily placing him on Steve Kerr’s most-liked list in no time — at 20 years old.

2022-23 Expectations

The former lottery pick didn’t play more than five minutes until the sixth game of the season when he played 21 in a 21-point blowout win vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder. He didn’t see the floor for that long in a game for another two months, this time logging 25 in a 19-point loss to the Toronto Raptors. That game also was the first time he scored in double digits, finishing with 11.

Moody on Feb. 1 also dropped 20 points for his first time, excelling in a surprise start throughout a win over the San Antonio Spurs where he logged a game-high 37 minutes. Then on March 7, Kerr gave Moody another start and the rookie became the youngest Warrior ever to score 30 points in a game, going 10-for-23 from the field and 5-for-12 from three in a seven-point loss to the Denver Nuggets.

As Kerr and Moody’s teammates praised his preparedness and maturity every chance given to them, his value and promising future became most evident in the playoffs. Moody took advantage of his opportunity in a 39-point trouncing from the Memphis Grizzlies, scoring 10 points with two 3-pointers, three rebounds, one assist and one block over 17 minutes. That gave Kerr reason to keep Moody on the court a bit more.

After posting a plus-minus of plus-8 in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals, Moody was given more minutes in Game 3 and almost led a wild comeback in Game 4, falling just short against the Dallas Mavericks. From Game 2 through Game 5, especially the final three, Moody essentially was handed GP2’s minutes with the guard injured.

In a sense — not the exact same role — that very well could be the case next season. Moody, listed at 6-foot-6 with a 7-foot-1 wingspan, can slide back and forth as a guard and win. The Warriors won’t be afraid to have the ball in his hands to make a quick decision.

RELATED: What Warriors fans can expect from Kuminga in 2022-23 season

At Arkansas, Moody shot 35.8 percent from 3-point range as a freshman. In his rookie year, he improved to 36.4 percent from deep. And in four G League games, he shot 41.3 percent on threes.

His sound play on both sides of the ball already have him climbing up the depth chart. Becoming a true threat beyond the arc will only ramp up his timeline.

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