5 Reasons the Warriors Won’t Amnesty Biedrins

With the new CBA expected to include an amnesty – a one-time opportunity to payoff a player and  not have his salary count against the cap. For the longest time, it has been the expectation that the Warriors will use their amnesty on Biedrins. Talk of that has heated up with the new CBA forthcoming.

But, it won’t happen. Not even an option. 

Sounds crazy, right? Biedrins has been nothing shy of a disappointment the last two seasons – at $9 million a year. With three years, $27 million left on his contract, the Warriors would seem to benefit by cutting ties while they can.

But the Warriors won’t stand to gain much by walking away from Biedrins, at least not enough to outweigh the potential ramifications. 

Here are 5 reasons the Warriors won’t Amnesty Biedrins:

1. That is a lot of money to pay a guy to leave. Joe Lacob is a guy who didn’t want to pay the luxury tax even before the new deal. He clearly isn’t a big spender. For him to take a $27 million hit for some cap flexibility doesn’t sound like him.

2. The Warriors still believe Biedrins can return to form. General manager Larry Riley has said in the past he thinks it’s possible. And when they analyze Biedrins among other centers in the league, they don’t think he’s that bad. In a league short on quality big men, Biedrins can hold his own. If he gets close to what he was, he becomes a top 10 center.

3. Biedrins, the Warriors continue to believe, has some value. It may not be what they wanted in return, but some teams are willing to take Biedrins off Golden State’s hands. (Miami certainly wouldn’t mind having him) If the Warriors want to get rid of him, they can just trade him for the best offer they can get and at least get something for him, without having to pay his remaining $27 million.

4. The Warriors need Biedrins. What happens if they amnesty him then strike out on the good free agent centers? They’re starting center options are Ekpe Udoh, Lou Amundson and David Lee – all power forwards who leave quite a bit to be desired as centers. The Warriors are better off hoping Biedrins gets closer to what he was, hoping Mark Jackson can get something out of him. If they land another big man first, ok. Now they can afford to move him. But it’s too risky to move him with the hope of signing a starting center.

5. Moving Biedrins could come back to haunt the Warriors. If he gets bought out, he would become pretty cheap to potential suitors – making him much more attractive. What if he lands with Phoenix for the veterans minimum, or Portland, or Houston? The Warriors could wind up helping a team they might be competing against for a playoff spot. Imagine if the Warriors amnesty Biedrins, Houston or Phoenix picks him up for dirt cheap, the Warriors don’t get Nene or Chandler an end up missing the playoffs – with Biedrins’ squad getting the eighth seed thanks to their new center.

The obvious candidate is Charlie Bell. He has a year left for $4 million – enough to make a difference in the salary cap number but not enough to make Lacob lose any sleep. What’s more, the Warriors won’t be left with a huge hole in the rotation upon Bell’s departure.

And, for those thinking about it, no David Lee is not being considered for the Amnesty. If Lacob is hesitant to give up $27 million to get rid of someone, he won’t do it for more than $69 million. If the Warriors are worried about Biedrins producing for a potential playoff contender, imagine how worried they’d be about Lee landing in Phoenix or Denver.

There is no way Lee is sent packing.

Marcus Thompson

  • rew

    Biedren’s did well when Baron Davis was Warriors PG. Davis knew how to get Biedren’s the ball when he was open, he was very skilled at that. Because of this Biedrens used to get 12 or 14 points a game, often. Steph hasn’t been anywhere near as good at getting Andres the ball underneath the hoop, Curry is nice passer in open court, not that good getting the ball into “bigs” when there is traffic. Maybe Mark Jackson, a former All-Star PG, can help Steph improve in this area. Maybe the key to Andres getting back to where he was is Steph Curry, and maybe Monta too. Monta shoots maybe too much, I think, at least last year he did. we’ll see what Jackson does.

  • earl monroe

    Its a good point Rew

  • dan

    The W’s used to run more and Biedrins could beat other big guys down the court. Smart did not run much compared to Nellie’s. I doubt Jackson will install a fast paced system.

    The difference between a good and bad defensive team i 3 or 4 baskets. Look at the stats.

    Plus Biedrins got fat and happy with the big contract. He does not care anymore.

  • greg438

    Beans’ problem (and greatest personal asset) is his huge contract. Since he’s had the contract and the pressure that goes with it, he’s been struggling, really struggling.

    But the whole idea of the guards having to do more to get him the ball is not the solution. Smart tried that last year, getting him the ball early in the game; he got the ball, but it didn’t help him. He just has to get it together or not, and I hope he does. He seems like a nice guy and he has (or had) the skills to be a top 10 center and to help get the W’s in the playoffs.

  • EvanZ

    ” And when they analyze Biedrins among other centers in the league, they don’t think he’s that bad.”

    If true, that’s quite troubling. It’s pretty clear Biedrins was among the worst centers in the league the last couple of seasons.

  • EvanZ

    If the Warriors are serious about winning, I mean, really truly honest-to-god serious about winning this season, they have to amnesty Biedrins so they can have the cap room to go after Nene, Gasol, or Chandler. They’re not going to have enough with Bell’s contract, and it seems like a waster to use it on him, since he has an expiring contract, anyway, which could be valuable at the trade deadline.

  • ChuckDurn

    If the Warriors’ amnesty Biedrins, and somebody else picks him up, we’re not on the hook for $27M…… we would just owe the difference between $27M and his new contract. So let’s say Houston or Phoenix picks him up for 3 years and $12M, which is certainly not out of the realm of possibility….. the Warriors would only owe him $15M, not the full $27M. Has Biedrins ever shown any skills that an average center doesn’t have? He rebounds well, is average (at best) on defense, and is well below average offensively. It’s pretty arguable that Baron Davis could have gotten Kwame Brown similar statistics as Biedrins in their years together, which were obviously Biedrins’ best. I pray that if the Warriors don’t amnesty Biedrins, it’s because they have a deal to move his contract.

  • ChuckDurn

    Further to my point….. if Biedrins is to be considered a top-10 center, that means he’s above some of the following: Howard, Bynum, Okafor, Gasol, Nene, Chandler, Noah, Oden or Camby or Aldridge (take your pick), Brook Lopez, Bargnani, Hibbert, Bogut, Horford, and McGee. I don’t see him being better than any of them, and about half of them are his age or younger, so he’s not going to be making up ground on them due to age……

  • Marcus Thompson


    Good points. The Warriors wouldn’t be on the hook for the hole $27M. But I highly doubt he gets $4M a year.

  • EvanZ

    Why would we want a center that’s not even worth $4M per? The Biedrins ship has sailed and sunk. We should view the cost that way.

  • Niners in 2012

    First of all, Biedrins had his best year WITHOUT Baron. And scoring is the last thing we need from him. We need him to rebound and block shots and defend, you can’t blame Steph for that. Biedrins problems are he has no heart, no offensive moves, he’s too light in the butt and gets pushed around.

  • Niners in 2012

    There is NO RISK in cutting Biedrins without finding a replacement. We played better WITHOUT him last year. He was by far the worst player on the team, if not in the NBA. Everytime he was on the floor we start losing, the stats back it up. Check it out, -297 and he only played 1300 mins. That’s insanely bad.


    I wish people would stop pretending like we’ll be so worse off without him. You can replace him with a dleague big man to get the production we got from him.

  • Niners in 2012

    Biedrins could come back to haunt us??? LMAO!! Are you serious MT? Biedrins isn’t gonna be a difference maker on any team, what planet am I on right now? Look at his +/- stats, he single-handedly dragged down our team when he was on the floor. I HOPE that bum signs with a division rival.

  • Niners in 2012

    I HATE hearing the cheap talk with Joe Lacob. Warriors made money every year and now the owners get 51% BRI, c’mon now! Spend that money.

  • TimmyH

    The comments made by evan truly detail the fantasy world warrior fans are in if they want to praise Andris Biedrins.

    I will even give him the benefit of the doubt that his stats during the prime of his career with that team that was good with baron and his crew was good and he was a very active center.

    what I think it totally misunderstood about biedrins is that he’s dropped off tremendously and his confidence is so shot right now at this point that he won’t get it back. Those that know the game can objectively look at his game and come to the conclusion, he’s just not a physically and mentally tough person.

    Any half decent and even below average tall player would easily have produced the same stats and given the warriors the same production during those successful baron davis led warriors.

    we are talking about a center that has absolutely zero zero zero post go to moves and the only center i seriously ever seen that somehow cant simply face up to a basketball rim …square his shoulders and simply shoot a flat footed shot.

    this is the most ridiculous flaw in his game…and nobody in the nba should ever be called even an average center if they can’t even be coordinated enough to do so.

    even is right this guy is not even a top 15 center

  • deano

    My own take on Beidrins is that if he could make 70% of his free throws, he’d be much more aggressive at both ends. I he knew that he was not going to embarass himself at the free throw line, he would embrace contact. He would return to what he was at his best. The test for the Warriors is simple: if Beans can now make his free throws, he’s a keeper.

  • Cellar Dweller

    This is all crazy talk. I would trade Biedrins and continue to play small ball. When you state that Biedrins may regain what he had lost? What exactly is it that he had that he ended up loosing?

  • Jimbo

    Bingo Deano. He has to make his free throws. Everything follows from that. And that seems doable. Weren’t his best years when they had more coaching on free throws? Nellie really focused on that at one point I’m pretty sure – even had a coach specifically dedicated to it.

  • Achilles Chua

    Hey Marcus,

    You forgot that the Warriors bought Jeremy Tyler
    during draft night. With proper training and coaching, this kid may yet be the draft steal of the night if he develops. I am sure Mark Jackson will do everything he can to get this kid up to the next level.

  • Yoda

    EvanZ, re No. 10 the point isn’t whether he’s worth $4M on an open market, it’s that the few teams bidding on him wouldn’t have to go near that number because the Warriors would be on the hook for his salary. Since only teams under the cap can bid on him (at least until they all pass) and since he’s not a guy who is going to be a game changer it’s not going to be similar to true free agency.

  • Don

    The amnesty is an auction however so if there are a bunch of teams interested the price could go way up. Of course if there is interest a trade is also a possible outcome. I am surprised that you don’t think Lacob wants to spend. My sense he does. Just intelligently. but if he had a crack at a Dwight Howard, for example, I don’t think he would hesitate.

  • Kommon Senze

    The biggest reason they won’t use it on Andris (this year) is because they could use it next year on Andris. According to Larry Coon, the Amnesty exemption is not a “use it or lose it” exemption, like it was in 2005. It can be pocketed and used in any year during the duration of the new CBA. This means that Biedrins could come back this year, stink it up, and still be considered an amnesty option next year, when he has 1 less year to eat and 1 more year of potential proof that he won’t return to form.

    Of course, because of this, David Lee would also be an option several years down the line, when his salary starts to jump higher and his potential impact may start to wane. Will the Warriors have that type of patience? I don’t know.

    The very tempting thing to do would be to amnesty Bell now so they have the room to make an offer to Nene, but if Nene doesn’t take that offer, they would have simply wasted that amnesty on a salary that they were going to eat anyway (i.e., does anybody expect Bell to contribute much, if at all, even if he is on the roster).

    I hope they pocket the amnesty, assuming Coon is correct in his analysis, and then wait to use it on a player when it might actually benefit the team.

  • Jaysohn

    It is a one time amnesty that can be used at anytime during the CBA contract but they are still working out the details on how it will work. Right now it makes no sense to use the amnesty until you have investigated trade options or whether Beidrins play can improve under the new coaching staff. If Beans can get back to approaching 10 rebounds, 8 – 10 points and a couple of blocks a game then 9 million a year doesn’t look too bad. If he doesn’t produce then you can use the amnesty at any time if they are unable to trade him for value.

  • Troy

    Those who had the opportunity to watch Andris over the last several years should be thanking and praising him. Here are several reasons why Andris will have an exceptional year. Andris Biedrins is an exceptional rebounder and was able to keep the Warriors afloat for years. The Golden State Warriors have been a terrible rebounding team and Beidrins was the only formitable rebounder during his stay.

    He has had a very poor two years but one can make an argument that last year with the offensive adjustments running the ball through David Lee left little in available point opportunities for AB. He still managed to rebound at a respectible 8 a game, while only averaging 23 mins a game, over only 59 games last year. (Note: Andris only played 33 games the previous 2009-2010 year and was injured so no judments can made)

    Andris Saw his best years with an exceptional play making guard on the team (as most centers do now a days). The last two years with Monta dominating the ball allowed very little receiveing opportunities playing off the ball.

    The Warriors would greatly regret getting rid of Andris for equal or less in return.

  • Impervious Short

    Why amnesty him when there is always a market for centers? It doesn’t make sense to give away an asset albeit a diminished one. Didn’t Houston offer Jordan Hill and Thabeet for him last year? That would have saved something like 18 million. My guess is the Warrior’s West/Lacob doctrine is: We don’t make the team worse before we make it better. They are not going to move Biedrins unless they have a better option at center in the fold.

  • Yosembok

    With Jerry West on board as a consultant, give Biedrins another year and see if West can give some help. AB needs some coaching. He has decent foot coordination (brick hands) and needs to spend sometime playing summer ball to develop one-on-one moves and confidence in offense. He ain’t gonna get that development in Latvia.

  • theCity

    Amnesty cuts make sense when a player has very little or no trade value, and is in the last year of a contract.

    Assuming the rule allows an Amnesty each year- better to have Biedrins work his tail off and get better- otherwise another Amnesty exception won’t be available for 3 years.(if I understand the rule correctly)

    Bell makes the most sense if that cap space is what it takes to get a big man through free agency. Why is it is so hard for this franchise to find BIGs? We’ve only been waiting since Robert Parrish & McHale!!!

  • Niners in 2012

    Biedrins is a lost cause.

  • john p

    Biedrin’s is one of the worst players in the entire league, if not thee worst player in the entire league

    He has completely lost the ability to play the game