The Golden State Warriors have made many moves after learning of the right Achilles tear of their star guard Klay Thompson just hours before the 2020 NBA Draft.
Their first, and most immediate, was the drafting of former Memphis Grizzlies center James Wiseman. Given the injury to Thompson, it could be speculated that the Warriors thought of changing their draft strategy and instead opting for a dynamic, young wing player. However, General Manager Bob Myers stated they pressed on and selected the #1 on their draft board.
“We had him No. 1 on our board when all the dust settled. Certainly, the Klay thing made you think for a second, but it was just a short amount of time and we decided we’re staying the course of what we always felt but you have to take pause and think about things for a second… We got the guy we wanted and excited like I said to get going and get him in our practice facility and get to work.”
Following the draft, their next move, and potentially best so far, was to acquire former Phoenix Sun and at the time Oklahoma City Thunder, swingman Kelly Oubre Jr. Oubre had recently been traded to the Thunder following the massive deal that sent former Los Angeles Clipper and Houston Rockets point guard Chris Paul from Oklahoma City to Phoenix.
With the Thunder entering their rebuilding stage it seemed as if it would be an awkward fit for Oubre to remain on their roster as he is able to readily contribute to a winning and championship-contending team.
Once the Warriors made the move the details had been minimal on who else or what was added. The only piece of insight given was the Warriors using their $17.2 million traded player exception (TPE) from their 2019 trade with the Memphis Grizzlies who took their former NBA Finals MVP and now Miami Heat forward Andre Iguodala.
Today, the final pieces to the trade have been announced. The Warriors, aside from using their TPE, will send a 2021 conditional first-round draft pick and a 2021 second-round draft pick to the Thunder for Oubre Jr.
Financial Implications of The Trade
This trade will cost the Warriors their traded player exception and those draft picks, but it will also cost them more moving forward. Absorbing Oubre Jr.’s contract will push the Warriors tax bill to $134 million. Yet ownership has not budged at the financial burden. Owner Joe Lacob has communicated to Myers that he is willing to spend to keep the team as good as they can be.
“I’m not saying this because (Lacob) is 15 feet away from me,” Myers said during a news conference Thursday. “I’m so lucky to have an owner and ownership group like I have.
“I don’t know if the fans know how lucky they are, but my boss wants to win. My boss has never said, you can’t do this, you can’t do that. And I’d like to thank him for giving myself and our front office the opportunity to be aggressive, because he wants to win.”