The Golden State Warriors will run it back next season with the same core that won four titles in eight years, but the team may also add a legend of the game to its rotation before the season begins.
After factoring in the luxury tax, which irks owner Joe Lacob so much that he was willing to pay $500,000 in fines last week just to complain about it publicly, the Warriors are on track to roster the most expensive group of players in NBA history in 2022-23, per Zach Lowe of ESPN.
Their number could become even more prohibitive if the Dubs figure out a way to extend both Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins within the next year, which the team has noted it plans to attempt, before new contracts for Draymond Green and Klay Thompson arrive in the not-so-distant future. Steph Curry is also entering the first year of a new contract that will pay him more than $215 million over the next four seasons.
Translation: The Warriors can really only eat around the edges of improving their roster this summer, even after allowing Gary Payton II, Otto Porter Jr. and Nemanja Bjelica to get away in free agency. In other words, the team has to work with players who both have something to contribute and fit with the roster but who are also willing to play on minimum contracts.
Luckily for Golden State, there is one such player still floating around the free agent market who fits the bill on all counts — former Los Angeles Lakers forward and 10-time NBA All-Star Carmelo Anthony.
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Warriors on Short List of Destinations for Carmelo Anthony
Heavy.com’s Sean Deveney spoke to one NBA general manager who said that the Warriors are on the short list of franchises that would be interested in taking a swing on Anthony as he enters his 20th year in professional basketball.
“It would be a nice story if he could win a ring there to end his career,” the GM told Deveney on Tuesday, July 26. “Golden State has the room for him. He can make shots and they can hide up his defense, which is one of the big problems with adding him. He’d take the minimum. They have a lot of young guys on that roster, they could do with another veteran — and those guys all know Carmelo from Team USA. I do not know if they would really take that plunge on him, but it does make some sense.”
Returning to the Lakers’ roster for another year paired with LeBron James, or taking a minimum contract with either the New York Knicks or Brooklyn Nets, is also a possibility for Anthony, according to Deveney’s reporting.
Kevin Durant Trade Deal Now Appears Off Table for Warriors
Anthony, a former superstar, now appears the monster name most likely to join the Warriors’ roster after trade talks with the Nets for current superstar and former Golden State player Kevin Durant appear to have broken down for good.
The Dubs did inquire with Brooklyn about what it would take to get a deal done. However, the Nets’ asking price proved just too high and the Warriors were not keen on giving up their future for Durant, which would have included draft picks and young players such as James Wiseman and Jonathan Kuminga.
Golden State general manager Bob Myers more or less shut down the notion of a trade during an interview at the ESPYs last week.
“I like our team and where it’s at,” Myers told Mark Medina NBA.com. “I want to give the guys a chance to do it again. It’s a good group. We’re lucky. It’ll be fun to see.”