Draymond Green

Warriors Notes: CP3, Starting Five, Green, Kuminga, Saric

New Warriors point guard Chris Paul could endear himself to fans and the organization alike if he declares on media day that he’s focused solely on winning and is open to playing any role in his first season in Golden State, writes Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area.

Both Poole and Tim Kawakami of The Athletic believe Paul is best suited to come off the bench, leaving a strong starting lineup of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, Draymond Green, and Kevon Looney intact. That would allow the veteran point guard to head up the second unit and to move into the starting five in the event of an injury. He’d still see plenty of crunch-time action, but bringing him off the bench would allow the Warriors to manage his minutes in preparation for the postseason, Kawakami notes.

Asked by Kawakami if he has talked to Paul about being a reserve, Kerr said he only addressed the subject “briefly” when he spoke to CP3 following the trade that sent him to the Warriors.

“I basically told him what I just told you and told everybody listening, that we’ve gotta see,” Kerr said during an appearance on Kawakami’s podcast. “We’ve gotta work on this and put everything on the floor.”

Here’s more on the Warriors:

  • The decision to re-sign Green after he declined his player option was made early in the offseason and helped line up the rest of the Warriors’ summer moves, according to Kerr. “I think Draymond was the key decision over the summer, and collectively we just all felt like, you know what, he impacts winning at such a high level, he’s still such an impactful player at both ends, and this has been such a special group, let’s lean into the group and see what we can do,” Kerr told Kawakami.
  • Kerr said he’s excited to see what sort of impact the addition of Paul will have on young forward Jonathan Kuminga and newcomer Dario Saric, noting that CP3 makes the game easier for everyone. He added that he’s “really excited” about the addition of Saric as a free agent. “I think he was a crucial, crucial signing for us,” Kerr said on Kawakami’s podcast. “You think about our team two years ago, that won the championship. One of the reasons we won is we had (Nemanja Bjelica) and Otto Porter, two bigs who could shoot and play-make on the perimeter and tie together certain combinations. You look at Saric, he’s a bigger and stronger version of Bjelica. Really good pick-and-pop player, but also very strong, very physical, great screen-setter, great dribble-handoff guy.”
  • Kerr downplayed the notion that the Warriors need more size on their roster, pointing out that even defensive stars like Anthony Davis have trouble guarding Nikola Jokic. “You can’t just look at it and say we need somebody who’s big and strong to guard Jokic,” Kerr told Kawakami. “You also have to say, all right, at the other end, what are we going to do? How can you make the game more even when you’re going against a guy like that? Well, it’s with play-making and passing and putting the other guy in a difficult spot. That’s the balance you’re really looking for. You can throw a big guy out there on Jokic and it may not matter. And then you’re going to be less effective on offense at the same time and you’re really in a tough spot.”
  • Speaking to Sam Amick and Anthony Slater of The Athletic on the Tampering podcast this week, general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. also said he believes the Warriors have enough size. Dunleavy, who discussed several other topics during the conversation, also suggested that the organization believes new rules like the second tax apron and the player participation policy were implemented to slow down teams like Golden State. “I think first of all, you take it as a compliment when, you know, just like Kareem (Abdul-Jabbar), (when) they took the dunk out (of the college game during his time at UCLA),” Dunleavy said. “… You’ve gotta first let it soak in and feel like, ‘OK, we did something right (for the changes to be seen as necessary).”

Dunleavy: Paul Trade Came Together Quickly

The trade that brought Chris Paul to the Warriors came to fruition in a short span of time, general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. told The Athletic duo of Sam Amick and Anthony Slater.

The trade was officially completed in early July. The Wizards, who acquired Paul in the Bradley Beal blockbuster with the Suns, received guards Jordan Poole and Ryan Rollins, forward Patrick Baldwin Jr., the Warriors’ 2030 first-round pick (top-20 protected), Golden State’s 2027 second-round pick, and cash.

“The CP stuff developed over maybe a week or 10 days. That was not a long-term deal that we were working on,” Dunleavy said. “It happened fast. (But) I think this league, and this job is all about capitalizing on time horizons. And right now, we’re in the thick of a period where we feel like we can still contend, and we want to take advantage of that.”

The Warriors shed Poole’s four-year, $123MM+ contract in the deal. The 38-year-old Paul has a non-guaranteed $30MM contract for the 2024/25 season, and that factored into the decision to bring in the future Hall of Famer.

“Coming off a championship, you know, just two years ago, I think we all feel like we’re still right there,” Dunleavy said. “And so to make a move to bring in Chris was, I mean, some may see it as short-sighted, short-term. But yeah, it helps us win now and then it gives us some future financial flexibility.”

Dunleavy and other members of the front office began pondering whether to bring in Paul when the Suns considered waiving or buying him out before he was dealt to Washington. They initially thought of pursuing Paul if he was placed on waivers and became a free agent through that process. It eventually morphed into trade discussions with the Wizards.

“We identified him as a guy we thought could help our team. And the reason that was was just his experience, his leadership,” Dunleavy said. “We struggled last year and in years past with taking care of the ball. We struggled sometimes at the end of games with decision-making. So we felt like ‘Yeah, Chris is a little bit older. But he fits with our group, and he can help us in some areas that we’re deficient in. So it started to make sense.”

The team’s core players, including Stephen Curry and Draymond Green, quickly warmed to the idea of bringing in Paul, even though it may create some awkwardness with Curry and Green having been the team’s main play-makers for so many seasons.

“I don’t have a whole lot of worries about that,” Dunleavy said. “But I think just the common thread of competitiveness, intelligence and just being adults, those things make me believe that this thing can work out. I think for those guys, Draymond (and) Steph, especially, like you said, they’ve been through the wars with Chris for so many years and Chris the same way, that I think it came down to just that initial idea of it. There’s a little bit of a shock. And then once you settle in and think about it, and the ways that it would work, I think they quickly came back to, ‘This is kind of a no-brainer.’”

Warriors Notes: Lineup, Howard, Roster Spots, Load Management, Kerr

The decision on the Warriors’ starting lineup will be made during training camp, coach Steve Kerr said in a video link provided by The Athletic’s Anthony Slater.

Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins, Kevon Looney and Chris Paul will all get significant minutes regardless but Kerr wants to look at various combinations before making a decision.

“We basically have six starters, the way I look at it,” he said. “Only five can go each night, so I haven’t decided yet what we’re going to do. I want to see in training camp. We’re going to try to different combinations. Obviously, all six guys are going to play a lot of minutes for us. But if this is going to work, everyone is going to have to embrace it, regardless of who is starting and who isn’t.”

Kerr will look at a smaller lineup with either Green or Looney in the middle. However, he likes the chemistry that Green and Looney have developed over the years.

We have more on the Warriors:

  • In regard to Dwight Howard meeting with the front office, general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. said the longtime center is just one of many candidates for the remaining roster spots. The Warriors have held open the 14th and 15th spots. “In general, we brought in maybe 40 or 50 guys this summer to get a further look at,” Dunleavy said, as relayed by Warriors on NBCS (video link). “Some of them, we’ll bring into camp.” Dunleavy added that he’s not targeting a specific position to fill one or both of those spots. “We’re kind of open,” he added.
  • Dunleavy said the team will follow the new league rules regarding load management, Warriors on NBCS relays in another video link. Kerr has sometimes rested multiple starters during back-to-backs in recent years. “The league makes the rules. We’ll play by them,” Dunleavy said. “That’s the best I can say.”
  • Kerr says he’ll run a tighter ship after the Warriors’ disappointing postseason performance, according to Kendra Andrews of ESPN. “When you lose in the second round and you feel like you’ve had a disappointing year, it’s a lot easier to come in and be focused,” Kerr said. “It’s a lot easier for me to come in as a coach and be more demanding, and I think the players will expect that, too.”

Pacific Notes: Howard, Clippers, Westbrook, Davis

Dwight Howard completed his two-day interview with the Warriors on Wednesday and a decision on his future with the team could be made as soon as today, tweets Jason Dumas of KRON4 News.

Howard will travel to Los Angeles for a workout later today with Draymond Green and Chris Paul, according to Dumas, who states that the team’s veterans have already endorsed the idea of signing the 37-year-old big man.

With 13 players on standard contracts, Golden State is hoping to fill out its roster with a reliable backup for center Kevon Looney. Dewayne DedmonDerrick Favors and Harry Giles are among the players who were brought in for workouts, while the team also reportedly had interest in JaVale McGee before he signed with Sacramento.

Howard wants to return to the NBA after playing last season in Taiwan. He’s an eight-time All-Star, but has changed teams every year since 2016/17.

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • The Clippers shouldn’t be considered the face of the NBA’s new player participation policy, contends Law Murray of The Athletic. Although Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have missed a lot of games over the past few years, Murray argues that the PPP wouldn’t have affected the team very much if it had been in place last season. He points out that the two stars missed the same game 12 times in 2022/23. Only two of those games were nationally televised, and Leonard and George were legitimately injured for both contests — Leonard with a sprained ankle and George with a strained hamstring.
  • In a KTLA segment (Instagram link), Leonard says the Clippers will benefit from having Russell Westbrook on their roster from the start of training camp (hat tip to Fan Nation). The veteran guard made a late-season impact after joining the team in February. “It’s very important having him back,” Leonard said. “… Now we got a Hall-of-Fame point guard that’s been through it. I think that’s going to be big for us coming into the year.”
  • Appearing on the Athletic NBA Show (video link), Lakers owner Jeanie Buss said the team was able to overcome its slow start last season because of stellar play from Anthony Davis. Davis was limited to 56 games, but he averaged 25.9 points and 12.5 rebounds and L.A. was much better when he was on the court. “Anthony Davis being healthy, there’s an argument to be made that he was the best player in the NBA when he was playing,” Buss said.

Draymond Green Believes Warriors Can Still Win Multiple Titles

After re-signing with the Warriors on a four-year, $100MM contract, Draymond Green isn’t just trying to one win more title with the franchise — he remains optimistic that Golden State’s current core is capable of making it back to the NBA Finals and winning it multiple times, as Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN writes.

“I don’t like to necessarily put a number on things,” Green told ESPN. “But I don’t see why we can’t get two more championships. Why not?”

The Warriors’ playoff loss to the Lakers this past spring represented the first time since 2014 that the team had dropped a postseason series to a Western Conference opponent. Golden State won titles in 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2022, won the West in 2016 and 2019, and missed the playoffs altogether in 2020 and 2021. Green expressed confidence that the Warriors can start a new streak of intra-conference postseason victories in 2024.

“[The Lakers have] done it once, and that’s great,” he said. “Now someone has to do it again and again.
And I don’t foresee that happening.”

Here are a few more highlights from Youngmisuk’s story on Green and the Warriors:

  • Warriors general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. said he sought out input from Green and the club’s other core players when the front office was considering trading for Chris Paul this summer. “Really anytime we make a big move, whether it’s going to Steph, Klay, Draymond, you want to kind of feel it out and see what they think,” Dunleavy said, per Youngmisuk. “All of them initially, including Chris, sort of had some pause. But then they thought about it and real quick became like, ‘Let’s do this. This is going to be great.'”
  • As Youngmisuk writes, Green admitted that he didn’t immediately warm to the idea of teaming up with Paul, a longtime playoff foe for the Warriors. However, the idea quickly grew on him, and he’s making it one of his goals this season to help the veteran point guard win his first NBA title. Both Paul and Green are accustomed to being offensive facilitators, but Golden State is confident the two veterans will figure out how to effectively coexist. “The way they’ll fit together is their competitiveness and their intelligence,” Dunleavy said. “We will see how the skill set aligns and anytime you add another player like Chris Paul, I think there’s things you got to figure out.”
  • While Green has gotten used to the idea of being teammates with Paul, he knows there will still be work to be done to establish chemistry on the court. He says he’s excited about going through that process, according to Youngmisuk. “We’ve gotten together as a team, we’ve kicked it together and the vibe feels great,” Green said. “And I’m a student of the game of basketball and Chris Paul is a master, and I’m looking forward to learning from him.”

LeBron James Recruiting NBA Stars For 2024 Olympics

LeBron James wants to play in the 2024 Olympics and has started recruiting other veteran stars to join him, multiple sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic.

James reached out to Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Anthony Davis, Jayson Tatum and Draymond Green, who are all planning to be part of the team next summer in Paris, Charania adds. Devin Booker, Damian Lillard, De’Aaron Fox and Kyrie Irving are also interested in participating, according to Charania’s sources.

Team USA is coming off a fourth-place finish at the World Cup, but Charania reports that James’ team-building efforts started well before that tournament and aren’t related to the disappointing result. Charania points out that although the U.S. has failed to medal in the last two World Cups, it has won four straight Olympic golds and James wants to see that streak continue.

James was part of gold medal teams in 2008 and 2012, but he hasn’t played in the Olympics since then. He will be 39 in December, and sources tell Charania that he and Durant, who will turn 35 later this month, are viewing the 2024 Games as their “last dance” with USA Basketball.

They have both talked to Curry, who will be 36 next summer, about forming the core of the U.S. team, Charania adds. Curry has never played in the Olympics, but he has two World Cup gold medals.

Charania states that USA Basketball managing director Grant Hill refused to comment on the reported interest from James and other stars, but he is aware of it.

Warriors’ Lacob Talks Kerr, Paul, Poole, More

Speaking to Tim Kawakami of The Athletic, Warriors owner Joe Lacob expressed optimism about retaining Klay Thompson long term, as we previously relayed.

However, Thompson isn’t the only key member of the organization entering a potential walk year. As Kawakami writes, head coach Steve Kerr, who is currently coaching Team USA at the World Cup, could also be a free agent in 2024, but there seems to be momentum on a contract extension ahead of training camp.

We have started to talk with his people, again, same as kind of the Klay situation,” Lacob said. “Very early. There’s plenty of time. Steve is just like Klay, we want Steve to be here for a long time. Hall of Fame coach, we really value him. And I’m sure we’ll be able to work out something that’s fair to both sides.”

Kerr, who turns 58 later this month, has been Golden State’s lead coach for the past nine seasons, compiling a 473-238 regular season record (.665 winning percentage) and a 99-41 postseason record (.707) en route to six finals appearances, including four championships.

Here are some more highlights from Kawakami’s conversation with Lacob, which is worth checking out in full:

  • Lacob said the team didn’t plan to exceed $400MM in combined payroll and luxury tax payments for the upcoming season, but noted that trading Jordan Poole for Chris Paul created more financial “optionality” going forward — Paul’s ’24/25 salary is non-guaranteed, while Poole is entering the first year of a four-year, $123MM+ extension. “To some extent, this is a year-by-year league,” he said. “When you’ve got a chance to win, you’ve got to go for it. We did the best thing we thought we could do. This is going for it. So we’ll see what happens.”
  • Golden State’s owner said the team will take a wait-and-see approach regarding Paul’s future with the team beyond this season. Lacob also said that while he was initially dubious about the trade, eventually the Warriors realized it could make them better this season, since Paul has consistently helped raise the level of the players around him. “We kind of warmed to that idea and the more we processed it the more we thought it really made sense — at least for the short-to-intermediate term,” Lacob told Kawakami. “Certainly longer-term, I’m not going to deny, we gave up a great asset in Jordan Poole, probably has a decade or so left to play in this league. He’s probably going to just get better. We were going short-term versus long-term on this. But for a lot of different reasons, both basketball reasons and financial reasons, it just made sense to do it.”
  • Poole and Draymond Green had a well-documented dust-up during last year’s training camp, with Green punching the young guard. Kawakami asked Lacob if it was fair to say the Warriors had to pick between the two players this summer after a season filled with tension (Green re-signed on a four-year, $100MM deal). “I don’t want to say absolutely that’s true,” Lacob said. “I think it’s fair to say there was some level of concern going forward whether that was going to be something that would work out. To be honest with you, I think it would’ve worked out, could’ve worked out. But I think it is fair to say that in order to make the numbers work and so on, someone probably was going to be the odd man out. It just turned out, and it wasn’t planned, that it was Jordan.”
  • Lacob confirmed Golden State hopes to move under the league’s second tax apron next offseason, according to Kawakami. “It is very penal to be above it,” he said. “I think our goal would be to be under it, yeah. You just lose too many options in terms of constructing your roster, draft choices and a variety of things. It is very difficult to contemplate not being under it. But look, it’s a year-by-year thing and we’ll see what happens.”

More Contract Details: White, Lyles, A. Holiday, Draymond, D-Lo, More

Coby White‘s new contract with the Bulls and Trey Lyles‘ new contract with the Kings both include unlikely incentives that could increase the value of those deals, Hoops Rumors has learned.

White’s three-year pact is guaranteed to be worth at least $36MM and has $1.3MM in annual incentives that could push the guard’s earnings up to $40MM in total. As for Lyles, he’ll make $8MM guaranteed salaries in each season of his two-year deal with Sacramento and could earn another $1.2MM in bonuses, which would increase the overall value of the contract to $18.4MM ($9.2MM per year).

Here are a few more details worth noting on several recently signed contracts:

  • Aaron Holiday‘s one-year, minimum-salary contract with the Rockets is only partially guaranteed. Holiday is assured of about $1.05MM and would receive his full $2.35MM salary if he remains under contract through at least January 7.
  • Draymond Green‘s four-year, $100MM contract with the Warriors includes a 15% trade kicker, while Jevon Carter‘s three-year, $19.5MM deal with the Bulls has a third-year player option.
  • Only the first season of Julian Champagnie‘s new four-year, $12MM contract with the Spurs is guaranteed. For each of the following three years, he’ll have to remain under contract beyond August 1 to guarantee his salary for that season.
  • A player who re-signs with his previous team on a one-year deal (or a two-year deal with a second-year option) has the right to veto a trade, since he’d lose his Bird (or Early Bird) rights if he’s dealt. However, the new Collective Bargaining Agreement allows a player to waive that right to veto a trade when he signs that sort of contract, and Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell became the first player to do so, per Keith Smith of Spotrac (Twitter link). Alex Len also waived his right to veto a trade as part of his new one-year deal with the Kings, Hoops Rumors has learned.

Warriors Notes: Curry, Draymond, Saric, Paul, Myers

A galvanizing Stephen Curry speech made to rally his Warriors ahead of an eventual Game 7 victory against the Kings in this year’s first round informed the team’s eventual summer ethos, writes Tim Kawakami of The Athletic.

Kawakami argues that all of the team’s front office moves since that moment, as conducted by new GM Mike Dunleavy Jr., stem from its impact. Golden State’s offseason thus far has been highlighted by its decisions to re-sign All-Defensive big man Draymond Green, move on from pricey sixth man Jordan Poole in favor of a potential one-year Chris Paul rental, and generally lean on veteran depth a bit more than the club did last year.

There’s more out of Golden State:

  • Head coach Steve Kerr is relishing the chance to coach Green again on the Warriors this season, per Brian Windhorst of ESPN. “We’re really excited to have Draymond back,” Kerr said. “Given that he plays so well with Steph and Klay [Thompson], it was really a no-brainer to try to bring him back.”
  • The Warriors also made a move to shore up their front line, agreeing to sign veteran floor-spacing big man Dario Saric to a one-year, minimum deal. Anthony Slater of The Athletic and Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area consider the 6’10” vet to be a decent bench defender in addition to his three-point shooting abilities.
  • In a conversation on the flagship ESPN program SportsCenter (YouTube video link), Curry reflected on the addition of longtime rival Paul onto the team’s roster, as well as the subtraction of longtime GM Bob Myers, who left the Warriors this summer.

Draymond Green Re-Signs With Warriors On Four-Year Deal

JULY 8: The Warriors have officially re-signed Green, the team announced today in a press release (Twitter link).

JUNE 30: Draymond Green is re-signing with the only club he’s ever known, agreeing to a four-year, $100MM contract to remain with the Warriors, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

The final year of the deal will be a player option, Charania adds. Marc Stein reported shortly before free agency officially opened that $100MM to return to Golden State was looking likely for Green. He previously declined his $27,586,224 player option for 2023/24 in order to sign a long-term deal, which has come to fruition.

Green, 33, is one of the most accomplished players of the 2023 free agent class. The 2016/17 Defensive Player of the Year, Green is an eight-time All-Defensive Team member, four-time All-Star, and two-time All-NBA member.

More importantly, he’s a four-time NBA champion, spearheading Golden State’s defense during the team’s dynastic run over the better part of the past decade. You can easily make the case that he’s been the most impactful defensive player of his generation.

The forward/center is also an accomplished play-maker, holding a career average of 5.6 APG. In 73 games last season, he averaged 8.5 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 6.8 APG, 1.0 SPG and 0.8 BPG on .527/.305/.713 shooting in 31.5 MPG.

According to Anthony Slater of The Athletic (Twitter link), the Warriors will save $43MM toward the luxury tax in ’23/24 as part of the deal. Green will earn $22.3MM next season, with annual raises in subsequent seasons.