Warriors Lose Another Key Championship Contributor: Report

Otto Porter Jr Warriors

Getty Otto Porter Jr. celebrates from a double decker bus during the Golden State Warriors' 2022 NBA championship victory parade.

It’s been a wild first 24 hours of free agency for the Golden State Warriors — and not in a good way. First, the team officially bid adieu to hometown hero Juan Toscano-Anderson, who signed a deal with the rival Los Angeles Lakers. And while that particular loss was not unexpected, it was followed by a gut shot or two.

On Thursday night, it was breakout guard and lockdown ace Gary Payton II who flew the coop, agreeing to a three-year, $28 million deal in Portland. But the hits didn’t stop coming for the Dubs.

According to Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes, forward Otto Porter Jr. has come to terms on a two-year deal with the Toronto Raptors, with the second year being a player option.

Per Warriors insider Anthony Slater, Porter had a veteran minimum offer on the table from Golden State. However, he was able to secure a better deal in Toronto.

Porter Played a Huge Role for Dubs’ Title Team

Despite having bigger offers on the table from other teams last summer, Porter opted to join the Warriors on a one-year veteran minimum contract. To say that he outplayed his $2.4 million payout would be a massive understatement, even as he battled injuries.

In 63 games with Golden State last season, the former No. 3 overall pick averaged 8.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.1 steals per outing. He also connected on a healthy 37% of his triples. Meanwhile, his defensive rating of 103.3 was the No. 3 mark teamwide among rotation regulars.

Porter’s value became even more apparent during the postseason. In addition to playing a key role in multiple wins, he was the team’s most consistently positive player. The Warriors outscored their playoff opponents by a whopping 12.4 points per 100 possessions when Porter was on the floor.

With the Warriors losing three rotational pieces already, we can expect a much heavier dose of Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody in 2022-23. And that’s probably a good thing, long-term. After all, Kuminga has the potential to be a perennial All-Star, and Moody, well, we’re going to find out.

The latest Golden State Warriors news straight to your inbox! Heavy on Warriors newsletter here!

Join Heavy on Warriors!

All Eyes on Looney

As was the case with Payton, the loss of Porter comes as a direct result of the Warriors’ unprecedented luxury tax situation. Even without him, Payton and Toscano-Anderson in the fold, the team is flirting with a $400 million payroll when one considers repeater tax penalties.

The Dub Nation faithful now find themselves wondering whether Kevon Looney’s time in the Bay Area could come to an end for the same reason.

Looney has been a rock for the Warriors the last few years, but the 2021-22 campaign was his best effort yet. Appearing in every single game — regular season and playoffs — for the Warriors, the 26-year-old put up 6.0 points and 7.3 rebounds per contest. As a result, he has earned a significant raise from the $5.2 million he earned in the final year of his deal.

Alas, those tax penalties. The fact that Looney doesn’t space the floor or provide elite rim protection and the presence of James Wiseman on the roster are no doubt giving the Warriors pause.


Read More