Some thought the Warriors might not end up with any players on Thursday night. Instead, they ended up with four.
Golden State made all three of their NBA Draft selections, the last of which was on Brazilian swingman Gui Santos with the 55th pick. Santos, 20, may be a “draft and stash” player who the Warriors will have the rights to should he decide to come and play stateside. Golden State did the same thing with Justinian Jessup in 2020. The Warriors had reportedly been looking to trade the pick but couldn’t find any suitors.
But the Warriors weren’t done. Shortly after making the pick, Golden State reportedly signed undrafted Memphis guard Lester Quinones to a two-way contract.
The 6-foot-6 Santos is all athleticism at this point, and is considered a plus player when it comes to scoring on the drive, cutting off the ball and defensive effort. Shooting is his weakness, however, and his improvement in that area will determine whether he can play at the next level. Santos has been playing for professional Brazilian team Minas since he was 16.
Quinones, 21, is another wing but in the opposite mold. Quinones was a 39% 3-point shooter in his junior season at Memphis last year but lacks athleticism and struggles to create his own shot. At this point he wouldn’t be able to do much more than catch and shoot at the next level.
Santos and Quniones will be joined by first-round pick Patrick Baldwin Jr. and second-round pick Ryan Rollins. It’s unclear if any will get much of a run on a title-defending Warriors team that is already full of young talent, but at the very least the Santa Cruz Warriors should be a fun watch.