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#pounditSunday, January 29, 2023

Articles tagged: Golden State Warriors

Is James Wiseman’s future with Warriors in jeopardy?

James Wiseman in a practice shirt

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Warriors felt they were drafting a potential franchise cornerstone when they used the second overall pick on James Wiseman two years ago. They have not seen much of him because of a knee injury, however, and many have wondered if the former Memphis star’s days with the team could be numbered.

Anthony Slater of The Athletic indicated this week that the Warriors are not committed to Wiseman. He noted how Wiseman is expected to enter the 2022-23 season fully healthy after recovering from a knee injury. Despite that, he will likely begin the year as a backup center behind Kevin Looney.

The Warriors have a massive luxury tax bill. Wiseman is owed $21.7 million over the next two seasons. Unless he enjoys an early-season breakout, Golden State may feel that it is not worth paying him to sit on the bench.

Wiseman underwent meniscus surgery in April of 2021. He was initially expected to return last season, but he suffered a setback and needed another surgery.

Wiseman played in 39 games as a rookie two seasons ago, averaging 11.5 points and 5.8 rebounds in 21.4 minutes per game. He should draw interest on the trade market if the Warriors make him available. Though, it was not that long ago that they seemed unwilling to part with him.

Concerning signs emerging about 1 young Warriors player?

Steve Kerr in a blue warmup jacket

Mar 20, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr encourages his players during the fourth quarter against the San Antonio Spurs at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Warriors’ present is coming off their fourth NBA title in the last eight seasons. But there may be some cause for concern when it comes to their future.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said Tuesday on “First Take” that he has heard unflattering things about the attitude and the work ethic of second-year Warriors forward Jonathan Kuminga.

“I’m worried about Kuminga,” said Smith. “I’m hearing too many things about him off the court in terms of his head. The level of discipline that he lacks. Some of the foolishness.

“I’m not getting into his personal business, I’m not saying nothing like that,” Smith continued. “I’m talking attitude, I’m not talking actions … The level of focus, commitment, determination, just putting your head down, doing the work. I’m hearing that he’s shortchanging the Warriors in that regard.”

Kuminga, who is still only 19, went to the Warriors with the No. 7 pick in last year’s draft. He had his moments as a rookie, making 70 appearances with 9.3 points and 3.3 rebounds per contest. Kuminga was also somewhat of a favorite among Golden State’s fans, who gave him a vulgar nickname.

A 6-foot-7 forward with a wingspan of nearly seven feet, Kuminga has plenty of upside as a defensive kraken who can check multiple positions and also as a high-energy roll man with his powerful dunking ability. But that raw talent means little without the work ethic to match, so it sounds like the Warriors still have some coaching up to do of their prized young piece.

Past, present Warriors combine for great photo at Draymond Green’s wedding

Draymond Green smiling

Feb 20, 2020; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) stands on the court before the game against the Houston Rockets at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Avengers came together at Draymond Green’s wedding.

The Warriors star Green married his longtime girlfriend Hazel Renee in a ceremony over the weekend. Among the guests were a whole lot of Golden State players, both past and present. One awesome group shot in particular went viral. In a very remarkable who’s who of Warriors from over the years, Dorell Wright, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Klay Thompson, Shaun Livingston, Leandro Barbosa, Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody, Matt Barnes, and Gary Payton II all posed for a picture.

No fewer than 14 NBA championship rings are accounted for in just that one photo alone.

Many other NBA players not seen in the picture were also present at Green’s wedding. Among them were Andre Iguodala, Kevon Looney, Steph Curry, Damion Lee, and Seth Curry. LeBron James and Jayson Tatum were in attendance as well.

It is safe to say that Green has done a lot of winning with a lot of different players over his ten-year NBA career. Granted, there is one notable former Warrior who was not seen at Green’s wedding.

Kevin Durant gets into it with Twitter trolls again over move to Warriors

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant is trying to navigate through another drama-filled offseason, but the Brooklyn Nets star always seems to find time to go at it with trolls on social media.

Durant was once again irked on Sunday by some fans on Twitter who criticized him for signing with the Golden State Warriors six years ago. These particular K.D. haters said the 12-time All-Star ruined his legacy and negatively impacted the NBA by leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder for Golden State. Of course, Durant strongly disagrees.

As we have seen him do in the past, Durant then began firing off replies left and right.

For better or worse, Durant never tunes out all of the noise. It probably serves as his primary source of motivation, which is why he has shown no signs of slowing down.

Durant’s detractors absolutely loved when the Warriors won a championship this year without him (again). K.D. had some advice for those trolls after the NBA Finals that he should probably considering taking himself.

1 opposing team is threat to sign Jordan Poole away from Warriors?

Jordan Poole with his eyes closed

May 26, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Jordan Poole (3) during the national anthem before game five of the 2022 western conference finals against the Dallas Mavericks at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

One opponent may soon be crashing the Golden State Warriors’ Poole party.

An Eastern Conference executive told Sean Deveney of Heavy.com this week that the Orlando Magic could potentially be a threat to sign shooting guard Jordan Poole away from Golden State next summer. Deveney adds that the Magic might be armed with as much as $60 million in cap space, which the Warriors, who are trapped in the luxury tax abyss, will likely be unable to compete with for Poole.

Poole, who busted out for 18.5 points and 4.0 assists per game last season, is under contract for one more year but can hit restricted free agency in 2023. One may argue that the defending champion Warriors are the consummate fit for Poole, whose blemishes, especially on defense, are masked by all the star power he has alongside him on the team.

But if the 23-year-old Poole wants to get his bread, it is hard to compete with the easy-money opportunity provided by the Magic. Poole would also have a shot to be at the top of the offensive totem pole in Orlando, a team that has built around players at other positions (like Cole Anthony, Franz Wagner, Wendell Carter Jr., and No. 1 overall draft pick Paolo Banchero) instead of around a high-scoring 2 guard. That is a chance that Poole may never get in Golden State.

The Warriors still have one more year to figure out what to do about Poole. But some other financial factors could severely cramp what they are able to offer the former first-round pick in a potential extension.

Steve Kerr shares why Warriors are holding roster spot open

Steve Kerr looks on from the sideline

Jan 18, 2020; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr stands on the sideline during the fourth quarter against the Orlando Magic at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Warriors have become very good at maximizing roster flexibility in recent seasons due to salary demands and the need to surround their star core with competent pieces. That has led to an intriguing situation with their current roster setup.

Golden State has 13 players on guaranteed contracts and intends to use the final spot on the roster for a player who wins a camp battle, or even to leave it empty for salary cap purposes. That leaves one guaranteed spot open, and that is by design. According to coach Steve Kerr, that spot is being held for veteran forward Andre Iguodala in the event he decides to return for another season.

“I leave Andre alone,” Kerr told Anthony Slater of The Athletic. “He knows where we stand. If he wants to come back, we’d love to have him. The one thing we feel strongly about with Andre is we want to give him whatever space and time he needs to make a decision. I’m leaving him alone. Whenever he makes his decision is fine with us.”

With training camp looming in September, Iguodala will have to make his decision sooner rather than later. Clearly, the Warriors are relaxed about that, no matter what he decides.

Iguodala is a bit player at this point, and he only appeared in 31 games for the Warriors during the regular season last year. However, he is an important veteran leader. Reports suggested he was ready to retire last year before the Warriors came in with a late offer, so it would not be a shock if he decides to go out on top now.

1 rival star shot down Draymond Green’s efforts to recruit him to Warriors

Draymond Green in a warmup shirt

May 18, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) before game one of the 2022 western conference finals against the Dallas Mavericks at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

One current NBA star is apparently the anti-Kevin Durant.

Chicago Bulls swingman DeMar DeRozan appeared this week on Draymond Green’s podcast for The Volume. In the episode, Green revealed he tried to recruit DeRozan to the Golden State Warriors last year, only to be spurned.

“Talking to you everyday like, ‘Yo, you good? Yo, what about this, what about that?'” said Green with DeRozan opposite him during the podcast. “Then the conversation turned to like, ‘Yo, come to the Warriors’, and you were like, ‘Fโ€”, no. I’m not coming there. I’m not coming to play with y’all.’

“‘We can win a championship if you come to the Warriors,'” Green further says he told DeRozan. “You didn’t come. But we still won a championship [even if] you didn’t come … Had to throw that one out there.”

The seven-time All-Star DeRozan also explains in the interview how he ended up with Chicago instead and how his free agency situation last summer affected his mental health. You can watch it in full here.

In the end, both sides got what they wanted. DeRozan got a hearty payday (three years and $82 million) plus a featured role in the spotlight, neither of which he would have gotten in Golden State. But the Warriors, with Andrew Wiggins, Jordan Poole, and a returning Klay Thompson on the wing instead, won the NBA title, which was their fourth in the last eight years.

Soon to be 33 years old, DeRozan is one of the most respected players in the league among his peers. His refusal to take the easy route despite still being without a championship ring will probably earn him even more respect.

Carmelo Anthony could land with top contender?

Carmelo Anthony looking on

Nov 27, 2019; Portland, OR, USA; Portland Trail Blazers power forward Carmelo Anthony (00) warms up prior to tip off against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

After 19 years of searching for his first NBA title, it may be time for Carmelo Anthony to queue up Survivor’s “The Search Is Over.”

Heavy.com’s Sean Deveney spoke this week with an anonymous league GM, who mentioned the defending champion Golden State Warriors as a possible landing spot for the ten-time All-Star Anthony.

“Golden State has the room for him,” the executive was quoted as saying of Anthony. “He can make shots and they can hide up his defense, which is one of the big problems with adding him. Heโ€™d take the minimum.”

Though he is now a grandfatherly 38 years old, Anthony still put up good offensive numbers for the Los Angeles Lakers last season (13.3 points per game on 44.1 percent from the field and 37.5 percent from deep). True, he can’t stay in front of a turkey sandwich on defense these days. But as a veteran gunner off the bench who makes the most of his shot attempts, Anthony is a serviceable option, especially on a minimum salary.

The Warriors do have some forward depth to recoup after Otto Porter Jr. left for Toronto and Nemanja Bjelica chose to go back to Europe this offseason. Anthony also got experience playing with Golden State stars Klay Thompson and Draymond Green during the 2016 Olympics in Rio. At the very least, the Warriors will give Anthony a better shot at the title than this team that has also been linked to him.

Draymond Green headed for major standoff with Warriors?

Draymond Green on the court

May 24, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts after a play against the Dallas Mavericks during the first quarter in game four of the 2022 Western Conference finals at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Warriors are fresh off their fourth NBA title in eight seasons, and all appears well for the franchise. That could change, however, depending on a major contract negotiation that could become a factor as soon as next week.

Warriors forward Draymond Green is eligible to sign a new four-year contract with the team starting on Aug. 3, and feels he deserves a maximum deal, according to Anthony Slater and Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic. The franchise, however, does not have any plans to offer Green a max extension, and there is no traction on contract talks at this time. Green has a $27.5 million player option for 2023-24, and the Warriors would prefer to discuss a new deal with the forward next summer instead of this.

The Warriors’ situation is complicated by the fact that Green is reportedly willing to “explore his outside options” to get his desired contract, though he would prefer to stay with the team. In addition, Stephen Curry would reportedly be unhappy if the Warriors were to lose Green simply because the team would not pay him.

Green is famous for playing with a chip on his shoulder and he could certainly channel perceived disrespect from the Warriors into something positive on the court. The risk is that things get toxic off the floor, especially if Green’s teammates side with him.

Ultimately, Green’s demands may force the Warriors to part ways with a key member of their supporting cast. That may wind up being the cost of keeping the team’s Big Three together.

Report: Nets have little interest in 1 team’s Kevin Durant trade pieces

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

The persistent rumors linking Kevin Durant to the Golden State Warriors will not go away, but any trade effort appears to have run into a big roadblock.

In a new episode of “The Lowe Post” podcast, via RealGM, ESPN’s Zach Lowe reported that the Brooklyn Nets do not appear to have significant interest in taking on key pieces like Jordan Poole or Andrew Wiggins in a Durant deal. The only other assets the Warriors could offer at that point are younger, unproven players that would not be of much interest to Brooklyn.

Wiggins presents an issue of his own. He would likely need to be included in any Durant trade for salary cap purposes, but the Nets could not roster him and Ben Simmons at the same time due to their designated player extensions.

A Durant-Warriors reunion has been rumored since Durant’s trade request, and Steph Curry seemed to be pushing for it at one point. However, Golden State does not appear to be seriously pursuing it at this point. Part of that may be down to how logistically difficult it would be, especially with Brooklyn not terribly eager to take on what the Warriors might be able to offer.