Warriors Gain Much-Needed Flexibility with Three-Way Trade

The Warriors have reportedly pulled off a maneuver to free up some desperately needed flexibility to fill out the roster.

Instead of signing free agent Andre Iguodala, the Warriors will now acquire him via sign-and-trade with Denver, as Yahoo! Sports first reported. Denver, who lost to the Warriors in the first round of the playoffs, was first unwilling to work a deal to help Golden State. But with their eyes on Utah guard Randy Foye, the Nuggets are consenting to a three-team deal with the Warriors and Jazz.

Golden State’s original deal remains in tact: Richard Jefferson, Andris Biedrins and Brandon Rush — along with 2014 and 2017 first-round picks, and two second round picks. With the Warriors only getting the non-guaranteed contract of Kevin Murphy in return, they’d also get Trade Player Exception(s) worth more than $23 million.

The trade with the Jazz drops the Warriors salary cap number down to about $48 million including the non-guaranteed contracts of Murphy, Kent Bazemore, Scott Machado and Dwayne Jones. But with the cap holds of guard Jarrett Jack ($8.1 million), Carl Landry ($4.8 million) and draft pick Nemamja Nedovic, the Warriors are still considered over the cap.

Previously, the plan was to renounce Jack and Landry — and possibly cut the non-guaranteed contracts of Murphy, Machado and Jones — to get the Warriors under the cap enough to sign Iguodala to a four-year, $48 million. But doing that would leave the Warriors with ZERO cap space. What’s more, they would have had to give up their mid-level exception, rookie exception and the trade exceptions they received from Utah. Golden State would only have minimum contracts and a $2.6 million “room exception” to fill out its roster.

To prevent that, the Warriors instead will sign-and-trade for Iguodala. This prevents renouncing Jack and Landry and their exceptions. (Though both have already agreed to sign elsewhere. Though not official, don’t expect either to come back to GSW) The Nuggets will also get Foye from Utah in a sign-and-trade (for three years, $9 million, per the Deseret News). The Warriors will send another second-round pick (2018) to Utah.

In the end, Golden State will have the mid-level exception, which allows them to sign a player for more than $5 million in the first year, and the rookie exception, which allows them to sign Nedovic despite being over the cap. The Warriors also get to keep their Traded Player Exception(s), which allows them to absorb up to $23 million in contracts of players from another team. (NOTE: There is a chance they use a chunk of that TPE money on Iguodala.)

Using the sign-and-trade, however, means Golden State will have a hard cap. New CBA rules state that teams receiving a player in a sign-and-trade cannot for any reason go more than more than $4 million above the luxury tax line – which is expected to be $75.6 million.

The Warriors are at about $59 million, including non-guaranteed contracts and Iguodala’s first year is just shy of $12 million. That would leave Golden State about $16 million of room to add players, including the MLE to sign a free-agent. Even more if they cut the non-guaranteed contracts of Scott Machado, Dwayne Jones and Kevin Murphy.



Guard Jarrett Jack Leaving Warriors to Join Cleveland

Point guard Jarrett Jack’s days with the Warriors are all but officially over.

The stud reserve who helped lead the Warriors on a playoff run, agreed to a four-year deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers, a league source said. Jack’s new deal – eligible to be signed on July 10 when the NBA’s moratorium ends – totals $25.2 million. Just over $19 million of that is guaranteed.

Jack will join budding star point guard Kyrie Irving and try to duplicate his impact on the Warriors with the Cavaliers.

Golden State’s acquisition of swingman Andre Iguodala figured to end his days with the Warriors. But some salary cap wiggling kept alive some hope he could stay in the Bay Area.

However, Jack’s importance to the team figured to be diminished on the new-look Warriors so he decided to jump at other options.

Jack – who will just be turning 30 when his ninth NBA season begins – averaged 12.9 points and 5.6 assists in 29.7 minutes off the bench in his one season with the Warriors. In the playoffs, he averaged 17.2 points, 4.7 assists and 4.4 rebounds in 35.5 minutes.

Acquired last season from New Orleans in a three-team trade involving Dorell Wright, Jack emerged as one of coach Mark Jackson’s most reliable players. His ability to be a floor general and hit big shots made him invaluable to the Warriors on the court. His presence also allowed Golden State to play star point guard Stephen Curry off the ball. Jack was also key in a locker room that developed noteworthy chemistry on the road to a first-round upset of Denver and a six-game battle with the San Antonio Spurs.

Iguodala, whose skills allow him to play some point-forward, is expected to fill some of the void Jack will leave behind. The rest of the load will likely fall on Curry. He will probably have the ball in his hands a lot more, especially down the stretch.


Andre Iguodala: “We can be a really good team with a lot of hard work”

Andre Iguodala said the Warriors were atop his list of possible destinations. He’s been eyeing the Warriors for a couple years now. But he thought, as had been the case in the past, the cards wouldn’t fall right.

Suddenly, his phone rang, and he was a Warrior.

IGUODALA: “It just popped up. Didn’t expect it. You kind of hoped for it the whole time, but you didn’t think it would happen. You couldn’t help but think, ‘Man, it’s something else going on.’ I just didn’t think it could happen.”

Well, it did happen. The Warriors dumped three players, renounced the rights to two of its free agents, and parted with multiple draft picks — all to the Utah Jazz. That cleared the salary cap space so the Warriors could sign Iguodala to a four-year, $48 million contract. And after years of being attracted to each other from afar, Golden State and the versatile swingman were united.

IGUODALA: “It’s funny because when I was getting traded when I was in Philly, and I was like, ‘Where would I go?’ Golden State was in it back then.”

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Dwight Howard Passes on Golden State

The Warriors have been informed by Dwight Howard he will not be joining Golden State, according to a team source.

The Warriors emerged from long shot to viable option after meeting with Howard on Monday. But despite adding swingman Andre Iguodala, Howard chose to pair up with All-NBA guard James Harden to become the next great center for the Rockets. Houston can offer the same four-year, $88 million contract the Warriors could offer but Texas doesn’t have state taxes, which means Howard can keep more of his money.

That means Golden State will keep starting center Andrew Bogut to play with guard Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Iguodala, forward David Lee and Harrison Barnes.

So who is better: the Warriors with Iguodala or the Rockets with Howard?


Warriors Land Andre Iguodala

The Warriors have reached a four-year deal worth $48 million with free agent swingman Andre Iguodala, multiple sources confirm.
The Warriors cleared the cap space by trading the expiring contracts of Andris Biedrins, Richard Jefferson and Brandon Rush to Utah. The deal may include multiple picks as well.
The deal lands the Warriors an upgrade on the perimeter. According to multiple sources, Iguodala — who Golden State has wanted for a while — wants to play for the Warriors. He’s a big fan of coach Mark Jackson and Stephen Curry, and his game fits the Warriors style of play.  Part of the reason, per one source, Iguodala did not sign Sacramento’s four-year, $52 million offer was because he wanted to see if there were a chance he could play for the Warriors.
Golden State can still get Dwight Howard, but only via sign-and-trade. The Warriors now have no other expiring contracts to send to the Lakers. So Golden State would probably have to pair Harrison Barnes or Klay Thompson with center Andrew Bogut to convince the lakers.

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Warriors Taking Dwight Howard Matters in their Own Hands??

According to ESPN, the Warriors are aggressively shopping centers Andrew Bogut and Andris Biedrins, and forward Richard Jefferson. Why? Golden State wants to prevent the Los Angeles Lakers from hatin’ on their Dwight Howard pursuit.

The Warriors are $11 million over the projected salary cap (at about $69.9 million including Kent Bazemore), not including the cap holds. That means in order to get Howard, the Warriors would have to agree to a sign-and-trade with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Reports are the Lakers aren’t interested in working a sign-and-trade and would rather let Howard walk and save the luxury tax bill. And they certainly aren’t keen on strengthening a division rival. And whatever hopes the Warriors have of convincing the Lakers to deal, many suspect, would involve giving up young stars Klay Thompson or Harrison Barnes.

But the Warriors don’t want to give up either. According to a source, their pitch to Dwight Howard on Monday — in which I am told Mark Jackson shined — included Howard playing with Curry AND Thompson AND Barnes. Those prospects intrigued Howard, as Marc Stein reported. So much so, the Warriors are now actively trying to create enough salary cap space so they don’t need to do a sign-and-trade with the Lakers.

It’s a monumental task, to be sure. The projected salary cap is $58.5 million, which means the Warriors would need to cut their salary down to $38 million or less to have the space needed to pay Howard the max contract he commands.

Cutting that much money would require the Warriors moving their three major expiring contracts: Bogut ($14 million), Richard Jefferson ($11 million) and Andris Biedrins ($9 million). Dumping all three without taking any money back would chop $34 million off the Warriors’ cap figure, getting them down to about $35 million. (NOTE: They would have to renounce the rights to their free agents, including Jarrett Jack, to remove their capholds).

The difficult part, finding teams to take on those big contracts getting anything (or much) in return.

The Warriors would need to find teams with enough cap space to absorb their expiring contracts. That’s probably easiest to do with Bogut because in addition to being an expiring contract he is a legit center when healthy. Teams like Portland, Atlanta and Cleveland are in need of a good, defensive center.

Then the Warriors could use a future draft pick to pair with Jefferson to sweeten his salary dump. To sweeten Biedrins’ dump, the Warriors could send a team $3 million in cash considerations, trimming Biedrins’ salary to $6 million.

Another route the Warriors can go is to raise the stakes and adding Lee’s contract. Pairing Lee with one or more of the expirings would allow the Warriors to dump the contracts while being able to take a contract back. For example, Bogut + Lee + Biedrins is $37 million in salary. Golden State could take back up to $14 million in contracts and still would have accomplished the task.

But what if the Warriors trade Bogut and Howard decides to stay with Los Angeles or go to Houston? That wouldn’t happen, per one source. The Warriors are paving the way to be able to get under the cap if Howard says yes (which he hasn’t yet).

At this stage, anyway, teams can only agree to deals. No trades can be completed until the league-wide moratorium ends. So if Howard chooses elsewhere, GSW can cancel the deals. They may even know Howard’s answer before the moratorium ends anyway, if reports are true that Howard will decide by Friday.