The Golden State Warriors have been granted a disabled player exception, or DPE, from the NBA per The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
The Warriors applied for the disabled player exception in the wake of star shooting guard Klay Thompson tearing his right Achilles just hours before the 2020 NBA Draft was set to begin.
With the exception, the Warriors would be able to bring in another player with their contract being up to $9.3 million. The catch is that the player would have to be acquired in one of the following three ways. First, the player would have to be signed by the team from free agency. Second, the player could be traded for, or third, a player could be claimed off waivers if they are cut from another team.
Given the initial reaction to the injury, the Warriors were poised to use the exception right away once granted. However, since then they’ve been able to add several players to their team which can help to delay the immediate use of the exception. Former swingman from the Phoenix Suns Kelly Oubre Jr. who had a breakout season last year, former Boston Celtics guard Brad Wanamaker, and former Los Angeles Laker and Warrior Kent Bazemore were all brought into the team to help bolster it in the place of Thompson’s lost production.
Why the Warriors Should Wait
As much as the Warriors may want to use their exception right now it would be best to wait for a better time to use it. Heading into the season, it may seem like the best opportunity to use it is now, but, that may not be the case. With the additions of Oubre Jr., Wanamaker, and Bazemore the Warriors have done a much better job incorporating new talents to keep the team competitive. Wanamaker and Bazemore will both be very valuable additions off the bench for them as their second unit last season was full of younger and inexperienced players.
Oubre Jr. adds a scoring punch and underrated defensive ability to the starting lineup that will be much needed going into a highly competitive western conference. Needing to build an all-around defense that will finish better than 26th overall, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr spoke on what he brings to the table and how he can make an instant impact.
“He’s got the ability on the ball to hound people. I envision us using Kelly quite a bit on the ball,” Kerr said. He’ll also have Wiggins guard opposing wings, and will challenge Curry to hold his own. “I think we can mix and match and have a lot of options defensively. We plan on using those options.”
Curry Believes This Team Can Compete With Anyone
Even if the Warriors have a lot of ground to make up they still do believe they can compete for a championship. And they should. Having a 2x MVP, Steph Curry, and former Defensive Player of the Year, Draymond Green, on your team at any point should give a team faith in what they can accomplish.
Their leading star, Curry, will have to shine as bright as he ever has for the team to perform well. On top of having a great statistical season, he will need to be a leader and the voice that pushes them to their limit at all times. Luckily for them, he seems as if he already believes this. In speaking about this upcoming season, he talked about the confidence he has in this team and what they will be able to do.
“We know we can compete with anyone in the league. It’s kind of crazy. We know how great Klay [Thompson] is. Don’t get me wrong. But we hear the chatter. ‘It’s the end of for us. This year is a wash. What are we going to do in the future?’ But we are in the moment right now. It’s kind of refreshing being in that category as guys that are chasing. We know [the Lakers] are the defending champs. We got to beat them. We’re ready for it.”