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Steve Kerr, Warriors view James Wiseman’s G League assignment as ‘long term’

While the Golden State Warriors traveled to Minnesota on Saturday, James Wiseman recorded a double-double for the Santa Cruz Warriors in their loss to the Stockton Kings at Kaiser Permanente Arena.

The game was the fifth of Wiseman’s G League assignment, which began on Nov. 15. So far, the 21-year-old center is averaging 15.0 points and 9.6 rebounds in 26.0 minutes per game.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr spoke to reporters before Sunday’s game at Target Center in Minneapolis, and said he was able to watch the first half of Saturday’s game but missed the second half.

“It’s a great experience and this is what it’s about,” Kerr told reporters. “It’s trying to get these young guys as many reps as possible. That’s what James needs right now and what Ryan [Rollins] and Patrick [Baldwin Jr.] need, so that’s the whole idea.”

When Kerr initially announced on Nov. 14 that Wiseman would head to the G League, he noted that the Warriors wanted it to be for an extended period of time. The assignment is about reaching the two-week mark, and it sounds like if it will continue for a while.

“He’s a guy who wants it really badly, and he’s got the pressure that comes with being the second pick in the draft and all that,” Kerr told reporters. So for a young guy, that’s an awful lot to have to deal with. But he’s really mature. He’s already been through so much with the injury. The biggest thing is just constantly reminding him that it’s a long race.

“He’s doing great. He’s right where he needs to be. And all these reps, night after night, are so much more important than him being here and not playing as much. So I still look at this, we all do, as long term, and we feel really, really positive about his development.”

Wiseman’s time with the Sea Dubs isn’t about stats. It’s about working on his game, refining his skills and learning how to play within the offense. It’s hard to do all those things with the Warriors when they’re competing for an NBA championship.

Kerr made it clear there’s still a lot for Wiseman to work on while with Santa Cruz.

“Part of it is getting reps and understanding rotations and schemes and all that stuff,” Kerr told reporters. “And then part of it is understanding what impacts winning. I think that’s the hardest part for all young players in the NBA, is to learn what impacts winning because that goes beyond a scheme. Now you’re delving into the mentality and the five -man synergy, and what is the group trying to accomplish, what do your teammates do best and how you bring the best out of them.It really takes all five guys to be in sync for that to happen.So, when you get guys who don’t have much experience, that’s a huge part of the process.”

RELATED: Wiseman throws down nasty dunk in fourth G League game

Santa Cruz doesn’t play again until Friday, so Wiseman will have plenty of time to practice with the Sea Dubs’ coaching staff this week.

With the Warriors starting to figure out their rotations, it’s unclear when or how Wiseman will fit back in. But for now, he’s right where he needs to be.

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