Dwight Howard might not be a realistic prize right now with the reports circulating that he is likely heading to the Houston Rockets, but still the Golden State Warriors make a major move by dumping salary in a trade with the Utah Jazz to create the cap space to sign free agent Andre Iguodala. Here is a breakdown of how the moves played out and why it tremendously benefits the Warriors.
Utah Jazz Acquire: SF Richard Jefferson, F/C Andris Biedrins, SG Brandon Rush, and first round picks in 2014 and 2017
Golden State Warriors Acquire: SG Kevin Murphy
Why this makes sense for Utah: The Jazz are clearly building around their young core of Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Gordon Hayward, Alec Burks, and Trey Burke and decided rather than pursuing free agents with all of their cap space that they would bring in three veterans as one-year holdovers in order to add a pair of future first round picks to help that youth movement, even if those picks will likely end up in 20’s. Jefferson, Biedrins, and Rush add needed experience and well, bodies to fill out the roster. More importantly, they are all in the final years of their contract so it is only a one year salary hit which Utah was more than able to take since they were incredibly under the cap.
Why this makes sense for Golden State: This is ultimate cap dumping move for Golden State with the purpose being to sign Andre Iguodala and still give them more flexibility for the potential acquisition of Dwight Howard. Biedrins and Jefferson barely made a mark in the rotation and Rush was injured most of last season so they didn’t figure into the Warriors’ long-term equation. Already having a pretty young core, Golden State doesn’t exactly need the draft picks in up-coming years since they are clearly built to win now.
Jazz Grade: B
Warriors Grade: A
Golden State Warriors sign G/F Andre Iguodala to 4-year, $48 million deal
By dumping the contracts of Andris Biedrins, Richard Jefferson, and Brandon Rush, the Warriors freed up enough cap space to sign Andre Iguodala who took less money to make a potential run at a ring with Golden State compared to the reported offers he had from Denver and Sacramento. It’s hard not to like when a guy does that.
Iggy adds versatility and experience to a young wing that currently features the likes of Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes, and Draymond Green. His ability to defend will also be a plus for Golden State since they are lacking in their perimeter defense. This signing gives head coach Mark Jackson a ton of flexibility with his line-ups as well. Iguadola will likely start alongside Stephen Curry and Thompson on the wing meaning Barnes instantly becomes one of the better bench scorers in the league. The Warriors can also go small by playing Barnes or Green at the four.
This is a major statement for the Warriors in that they are trying to contend for a push at the NBA Finals right now. Even if they don’t land Dwight Howard, Golden State will be a better team next season and could be a real factor in the Western Conference if Andrew Bogut and David Lee stay healthy. If Howard does somehow end up by the bay, Golden State will push themselves near the top of the totem pole out west. (There are conflicting reports circulating as of early Friday evening as to whether or not Howard has decided to sign with the Rockets but most “sources” say they are the favorite to land his services and not Golden State.)
Warriors Grade for Andre Iguodala signing: A
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David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank. He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities. David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu. He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft and the most accurate 2012 NBA Mock Draft on the internet (Yup, repeat champ… #humblebrag.)
You can follow him on Twitter at David_Kmiecik.Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks