For the past decade, the Golden State Warriors have worked hard to establish themselves as one of the greatest dynasties in league history. The trio of Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson is elite, having won their fourth championship in eight years last season.
Unfortunately for Warriors fans, that group may not be together for long. Golden State is deep in the luxury tax, and with Green and Thompson in need of contract extensions soon, they may be forced to choose. During a recent interview with Taylor Rooks of Bleacher Report, Green hinted that his tenure with the Warriors might end sooner rather than later.
“If you don’t get to know the business, then you can be blindsided and be, like, ‘Oh man, everything I’ve done, I’d thought I’d be there forever,” Green said. “I would love to be [with the Warriors forever]. [But] I understand the luxury tax. I understand you’ve got these young guys and contracts up, and they have to be paid. I understand all of those things. And so, just for me, that’s what I mean by the writing’s on the wall.”
However, as far as Warriors owner Joe Lacob is concerned, the Warriors have some time to figure things out. They don’t need to worry about contract extensions for Green and Thompson until next summer. That being said, he did admit to being in a tough situation.
“Draymond and Klay, first of all, they’re both under contract for next year, so let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves here,” Lacob told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic. “They’re under nice contracts for next year. Making a lot of money. We’ll have to wait and see how this season ends and then we’ll decide and they’ll decide. In Draymond’s case, he gets to decide, he has the power. He gets to opt in or opt out, do what he wants. I’d love for him to stay. That may be staying under his existing contract, it may mean he opts out and renegotiates something, a new deal that works for everyone, or it may mean that he gets offered a huge amount of money and we could sit here and be saying, ‘Man, how could we do that,’ and we’d have to make a decision. And that would involve other people’s careers. It’s complicated. Everyone knows that. Unfortunately, I’m sitting in the hot seat along with Bob Myers. It’s going to stay hot for a while.”
Draymond Green Fond of Staying With Warriors
But while Green may not think that he’ll be with the Warriors for much longer, he is supposedly fond of the idea of remaining with one team for the remainder of his career.
“It’s incredible when you look at the amount of guys who’ve played for only one team. You can look around the NBA right now,” Green told Marc J. Spears of Andscape. “There are five guys that’s been on a team for 11 years-plus. We have three of them [along with Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson]. It’s a very rare thing. There’s 470, 480 players in the NBA? There are five guys that’s been with his team for 11 years plus. That’s amazing. So, you don’t just give that away.”
‘Pretty Strong’ Chance Draymond Green Leaves Warriors
However, sources who spoke with Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports agree with Green’s sentiment. They noted that there is a “pretty strong” chance that Green will leave the Warriors this summer.
“Pretty strong,” a Western Conference executive said of Green’s chances to leave the Warriors. “If they win a championship again this year, there will be pressure to keep things together, but the stuff with the punch [on Jordan Poole] in the preseason, that probably put the nail in it. There was already a good chance he would go just because his production is not what it was and he is getting older . It would be hard to justify paying him $20-something-million a year.”