Myers: Rising Payroll Won’t Keep Warriors From Retaining Poole

With Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins set to earn a combined $148MM in 2022/23, the Warriors will once again blow by the luxury tax line (projected to be at $149MM) next season and will likely have the NBA’s most expensive roster. However, the rising cost of Golden State’s payroll won’t prevent the team from retaining breakout guard Jordan Poole, president of basketball operations Bob Myers told Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports.

“No, no,” Myers said. “I mean, thankfully (I) work for an ownership group in Joe (Lacob) that has committed all kinds of resources to winning. And I know that because every time I asked him about roster and strategy, it’s always winning.”

The Warriors’ team salary in 2021/22 was approximately $176MM, while their accompanying tax bill is worth $170MM+, meaning the team is spending about $346MM on this year’s roster. Golden State will remain subject to the NBA’s more punitive “repeater” taxpayer penalties as long as its team salary remains above the tax threshold.

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“You don’t need me to tell you what our payroll is. It’s pretty high,” Myers told Goodwill. “So he just wants to win. And we’ve spent a lot and we’ve kept all the players we want to keep, so I don’t see that changing.”

As expensive as the Warriors’ roster is, the organization makes a significant amount of revenue as a result of deep playoff runs like this year’s, as Tim Kawakami of The Athletic has outlined. Retaining key rotation players like Poole will help give Golden State the opportunity to make more of those runs and maximize the earning potential of the Chase Center.

Poole is under contract for one more season, but will be eligible for a contract extension this summer and appears to have made a strong case for a deal worth at least $20-25MM per year. The 22-year-old averaged 18.5 PPG and 4.0 APG in 76 regular season games (30.0 MPG) in 2021/22, and is at 18.4 PPG and 4.5 APG in 16 playoff contests (30.1 MPG).

If Poole signs an offseason extension, it would go into effect in 2023/24, at which point Andrew Wiggins‘ maximum-salary contract would be off the books, which could help lessen the Warriors’ financial burden. Of course, as good as Wiggins has been this year, the team may want to lock him up beyond his current deal too. Based on Myers’ comments, it doesn’t sound like Lacob would say no if the front office believes it’s the right move.

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