“How do we get better given the depth in the West? With Monta and Beans playing so well, their agents will be demanding top dollar for their new contracts. And even though we have leverage since they are restricted free agents, we may have to dig deep. If Baron stays, we keep Monta and Beans, and keep Bukie and maybe Barnes, we will still have to sign and pay two new rookies plus Wright, Kosta and Bellineli. If all that happens, wouldn’t we be at our cap limit and not be able to sign a free agent, even Webber if he works out? So how do we get better if not this season than at least next?” – Commish
Their agents can’t demand anything. The market will determine what they get. Unless they negotiate solely with the Warriors and agree to a deal Mullin likes, the Warriors will likely wait to see what offers they get, then match. Pretty much what they did with Pietrus, accept at some point they come to terms.
Biedrins and Ellis will probably get less than everyone expects. Restricted free agency isn’t the pot o’ gold it used to be. Teams will probably not be willing to sign these two to an offer sheet because a) they know the Warriors will match, b) their cap space could be locked up for seven days while the Warriors decide; c) there will be other, perhaps more desirable restricted free agents, such as Luol Deng, Andre Iguodala and Emeka Okafor, who will hog the offer sheets; d) they would have to go above and beyond the market value to get the Warriors not to match.
You’re right, if they keep every body, they will be over the cap and can’t sign a free agent. The only way they have cap space for free agency is if Baron doesn’t come back, or if Beans and Monta walk, which is unlikely.
The way the Warriors get better: trades. They have Harrington, Pietrus, Barnes, two draft picks, four young players. Who knows, they may be willing to part with Biedrins, too, depending on who they can get for him (Okafor?).