As expected — and also as he and teammate Andrew Wiggins predicted in the wake of their NBA championship win — Jordan Poole got the proverbial bag from the Golden State Warriors. Mere days before the 2022-23 campaign tipped off, Poole put his John Hancock on a four-year contract extension with the team worth between $123-140 million.
It was an incredible development for a player who was in the G League bubble less than two years ago, not to mention a mammoth-sized feather in the cap of Golden State’s developmental system. But Poole doesn’t have the luxury of resting on his laurels.
Big-time paydays beget even bigger expectations. And in the Warriors first two games of the season, Poole didn’t come close to meeting those expectations.
Fast-forward to now, though, and 23-year-old has reasserted himself as one of the game’s top up-and-comers. Not only that — he’s caught the attention of one of the greatest ballers in basketball history.
LeBron Taken Aback by Poole’s Jaw-Dropping Handles
After scoring a grand total of 19 points on 6-of-20 shooting during games No. 1 & 2 for the Dubs, Poole has been much improved in the team’s last two games. Against the Sacramento Kings on October 23, he dropped a season-high 24 points on 7-of-14 shooting.
He followed that up by logging 17 points, five assists and two boards versus the Suns on Tuesday night. And while the Warriors fell well short in the end, it was another encouraging performance for Poole on the offensive end.
Poole’s best moment came during the second quarter when he put both Landry Shamet and former Warrior Damion Lee in the spin cycle with an eye-popping combination of behind-the-back and between-the-legs dribble moves before hitting a difficult floater.
It was a move that drew the attention of people around the Association, including LA Lakers star and GOAT candidate LeBron James, who tweeted, “Jordan Poole so COLD!!!”
LeBron wasn’t the only one to get hyped over Poole’s offensive mastery, either. For his part, Indiana Pacers sharpshooter Buddy Hield added, “J Poole Handle Elite”
Skip Wasn’t a Fan of the Shout-Out
Fox Sports’ Skip Bayless — who famously goes after Warriors star Stephen Curry just about every chance he gets — found another way to rain on the Dubs parade. This time by going at LeBron for his Poole compliment and diverting attention away from the young star and back to the GOAT debate.
This is what Bayless told co-host Shannon Sharpe on their show, Skip & Shannon: Undisputed —
“So, here we go again with your man LeBron James. He wants to still be the face of the league, the big brother to all the young players… He is the face of the league — I will give you that — and yet, in the end, the real GOAT, the true GOAT, the one who played in Chicago through 1998.
“If there had been social media in his era, there is no way he’s complimenting younger players on social media. He’s not going to do it.”
The Warriors will be back in action on Thursday against the Miami Heat.