Jonathan Kuminga is far from a finished product. The Golden State Warriors rookie taken with the number seven overall pick is still an immensely raw talent at 19 years of age.
But Warriors head coach Steve Kerr knows that he has the frame and physicality to be an elite defender – maybe even Klaw-like. Kerr recently compared Jonathan Kuminga to Kawhi Leonard, the man who terrorized Golden State in the 2019 NBA Finals.
Via 95.7 The Game:
“He’s so young and he’s so raw,” said the Warriors coach on Kuminga. “I think the Kawhi comparison, really physically, his body, he’s built like Kawhi.”
At a built 6-foot-8 with an NBA body as a teenager, Jonathan Kuminga can only get stronger. His 7-foot wingspan is a couple inches shorter than Kawhi Leonard’s but the similarities are there. But having the frame is one thing, it’s another to put it all together for the Warriors to reap the benefits.
“Kawhi had two years at San Diego State,” Kerr said of Leonard’s developmental edge over Jonathan Kuminga. “He probably played 60 college games, including big ones in the NCAA tournament. So Kawhi was ahead of where Jonathan is right now. But physically, they remind me a lot of each other.”
What Kuminga has going for him is youth. At this point in Kawhi Leonard’s career, he was still playing in college while Jonathan at 19 is already around championship-proven winners like Steve Kerr and Stephen Curry. Leonard got virtually the same environment with the San Antonio Spurs when he arrived as a 20-year-old.
Jonathan Kuminga is lightyears away from being in the same stratosphere as Kawhi Leonard. But he has all the tools and people around him to get there.