In his short time with the Golden State Warriors, Donte DiVincenzo has already shown himself to be an incredibly valuable bench piece to the franchise. The team’s recent struggles, including four straight losses, have proven this fact.
Before he was a warrior, before he was a king, Divincenzo was a buck. In his time in Milwaukee, he has proven to be an incredible asset, starting in every game he played in during the 2020-21 Championship.
He is an above average shooter from outside the arc, while also having a sneaky athleticism that allows him to take on taller defenders more often than not. Combine those abilities with his top-level defense and playmaking, and you have a well-rounded player who the Warriors will look up to at game time.
The Golden State Warriors took on Donte DiVincenzo with the exception of mediocrity during the offseason, but his importance to the team’s success is worth much more than that.
In his first three games with Golden State, DiVincenzo has averaged five points, just shy of one rebound, and one assists, and he does so with decent efficiency. More importantly, he was a reliable defender and attacking point Steve Kerr could count on.
The team led 2-1, and their only loss came in heartbreaking fashion to the Denver Nuggets. He helped James Wiseman get off to a good start offensively, which in turn allowed the big man to gain some confidence. Since his injury against the Sacramento Kings, bench has been a major Achilles heel as the Warriors slipped to a 3-6 record.
He had a negative net rating over the three matches, but much of that was a product of younger teammates struggling in defence, subsequently slowing down attack as well. Even then, DiVincenzo was one of the only players to deliberately hold back a transfer, setting an example for his fellow bench players.
What role should Donte DiVincenzo play when he returns?
DiVincenzo will play better in a younger version of what Klay Thompson did for the Warriors five years ago – limited ball control, plenty of jumps, solid defense at every opportunity. This benefits the Warriors’ bench and provides an intimidating pairing with Jordan Paul, a player with an increasingly similar style to Stephen Curry.
DiVincenzo has the ability to power up not only Poole, but Moses Moody, Jonathan Kuminga, and James Wiseman as well. His ability to run down the ground and play defense meshes well with Golden State’s young core.
If DiVincenzo can keep his energy and effort on both ends of the earth while the Warriors figure out the rest of the rotation, he will become a major part and an invaluable resource as Curry, Thompson, and Draymond Green search for their fifth championship together.