Hello everyone and welcome to start of the third straight offseason of the “Making the Leap” series. Allow me to remind you followers and even explain to the new viewers what this series is all about.
Two years ago I started out with a piece about Spurs forward Kyle Anderson and talked about how he has the ability to improve his game in the next season (Hence where the name “Making the Leap” came from). From there on I wrote about some more players like Jae Crowder or Jordan Clarkson in the first season of the series. The following year, my list of potential players grew, writing about guys like Sean Kilpatrick, Steven Adams, Dwight Powell and Dennis Schroder.
Those are some examples of players I have written about in the past. I want to make a note here that Making the Leap players for me are not necessarily guys going from year one to year two. While some of the guys I have written about in the past were in that scenario, it is more for younger players who struggled with play or even struggling to get minutes on the court in prior seasons and now have the potential to improve in the league.
Today we are starting a new season of Making the Leap with a recently crowned NBA Champion.
Patrick McCaw attended UNLV where he played for the Runnin’ Rebels. In his two seasons, McCaw averaged 12.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.0 steals with the team. Before declaring for the draft, he was named to the Moutain West All-Defensive First Team and All-Conference Second Team. McCaw was then drafted 38th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2016 NBA Draft but was later traded to the Golden State Warriors.
Already stacked with talent, McCaw had to show what he was made of in the summer league and in training camp in order to get some time in the regular rotation. He was able to do that and when guys like Klay Thompson or Kevin Durant were hurt, McCaw would get the start and impressed running with the starters. He also got a run in as a starter in the first round against Portland while Kevin Durant was out and helped Golden State win their 3rd NBA title.
Patrick McCaw’s 2016-2017 regular season stat line: 4.0 points, 1.4 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 0.5 steals while shooting 43.3% (including 33.3% from three) in 15.1 minutes per game. He played in 71 games for Golden State, starting 20.
McCaw participated in the 2017 Summer League for the Warriors, averaging 20.0 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1 steal in five games.
So what can we expect for the second year guard going forward?
He showed flashes of brilliance, especially on the defensive end so that will be his strong point for this upcoming season. His impact in the playoffs and impressive summer league should not go unnoticed. Obviously, he’ll be coming off the bench with the insane amount of star-power Golden State has. However, I do think that McCaw will be on of the top guys coming off the bench for the Warriors and will fill in as a starter if guys like Thompson or Durant get hurt.
His ability to move off the ball should definitely help other players when he is on the court. His play style reminds me a little bit of teammate Andre Igoudala, being able to contribute on both sides of the ball. At 21 years old, he still has a lot to show for.
With a team of future Hall of Famers, McCaw was right there, being a valuable role player for the Warriors future.
Stay tuned for more players that I think will “Make the Leap” this upcoming season.