Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Saltzman Says...Potential Free Agents for the Warriors

The Golden State Warriors have a lot of money coming off their books this off-season.  Dan Gadzuric, Vladimir Radmanovic, Brandan Wright, and Acie Law will no longer be members of the Warriors organization after this season.

Barring a major trade, the Warriors are set on next year's roster at 8 spots.

Starting Point Guard: Stephen Curry
Starting Shooting Guard: Monta Ellis
Starting Power Forward: David Lee
Backup Shooting Guard: Reggie Williams
Backup Small Forward: Dorell Wright
Backup Center: Andris Biedrins
Backup Big Man: Ekpe Udoh
Backup Big Man: Louis Amundson

The Warriors could possibly make the playoffs next year with Dorell Wright starting at small forward, but having Wright and Williams off the bench helps bench scoring tremendously, and much like Manu Ginobili in San Antonio, Wright can take charge of the 2nd unit.

Andris Beidrins is no longer a starting center, and allowing him and his contract to come off the bench would take the pressure off of him to be dominant on either end of the floor.  Udoh and Amundson are both backups at this point.  Will Udoh one day be good enough to start at center...probably not.  However, with an additional center on the roster, Lee, Udoh, Amundson and Biedrins can all be more productive.

The Warriors also need a backup point guard who can run the 2nd unit.  Law and Jeremy Lin are not the answer there.

Starting Center:
Restricted free agent Marc Gasol must be brought in to move Andris Biedrins out of the starting lineup.  Memphis will not want to lose their center, but they also have Zach Randolph to bring back.  They might not be able to afford either, but if we offer Gasol the max, we can force the Grizzlies hand.  DeAndre Jordan, another restricted free agent, would be another good choice.  We might be able to outbid teams for Kendrick Perkins, who would be a good fit in the middle for us as well.

Starting Small Forward:
If we can upgrade here, it would be ideal.  Dorell Wright has proven he is good enough to start, but it would be nice to bring in an upgrade as well.  Shane Battier, an unrestricted free agent, might be a great plan b if we can't upgrade, because it would give us another excellent defender to go with Wright.  Caron Butler, Tayshaun Prince, Jason Richardson, Grant Hill, Carl Landry and Al Thorton are all forawrds who could be brought in.  Landry is a better fit in the frontcourt, but all are talented players who could compete for a starting job.  Players such as Andre Iguodala, Luol Deng, Danny Granger, and Carmelo Anthony have all been talked about as possible trade candidates, but none are likely to be traded to Golden State.

Backup Point Guard:
The two most likely free agents we can bring in to backup Stephen Curry is restricted free agent Mario Chalmers from Miami and unrestricted free agent Sebastian Telfair from Minnesota.  They can provide us with a pass first point guard who can help lead our 2nd unit.  Imagine a group to start the 2nd and 4th quarter of Chalmers/Williams/Wright/Udoh/Biedrins.  Aaron Brooks would be ideal, but I can't imagine him being ok with a backup role.

Backup Guard:
If we lose out on retaining Reggie Williams, one of our restricted free agents, I would like to bring in Aron Afflalo.  He can be a great 2nd unit defender.

List of Free Agents

Possible Trade with Toronto. - RealGM Analysis
Possible Trade with Toronto. - NBA Trade Machine Analysis

In this trade scenario, we would fill two big holes on our bench.  We would bring in Leonardo Barbosa to give us a true backup point guard and Linas Klieza to give us a true backup small forward.  With Klieza currently out with knee surgery, Toronto might be willing to give up the talented scorer since he will be out for 9 months or more.  We give up two expiring contracts in Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright, so Toronto can free up some money for the off-season.  Neither Gadzuric or Wright are playing for us and Jeremy Lin is in the D-League, so Klieza being out doesn't hurt our 2011 rotation.

Roster if Trade Happened:
PG Curry and Barbosa
SG Ellis and Williams (Bell)
SF Wright and Klieza
PF Lee and Radmanovic
C Biedrins, Admunson and Udoh

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