Jermaine O’Neal gave the Warriors a component of toughness last season, and was even placed into the starting lineup for the team’s first three playoff games against the Los Angeles Clippers.
By the end of that series, however — which saw the Warriors eliminated in seven games — O’Neal had worked himself out of the lineup almost completely. As the team looks to fortify the roster for the upcoming season and improve upon last year’s result, O’Neal appears to be the odd man out heading into training camp next week.
From Bay Area Sports Guy:
Bob Myers said Jermaine O’Neal won’t come to camp and “probably won’t be with us next year.” Said they’re happy w/ Bogut, Ezeli & Kuzmic.
Bob Myers said the Warriors are going with their centers Bogut, Ezeli, Kuzmic for camp — no Jermaine O’Neal.
Festus Ezeli, who missed all of last season due to a knee injury, would indeed be a fine replacement for O’Neal if he’s able to return to full strength for the upcoming season. He was a regular rotation player the year prior, appearing in 78 regular season games while starting 42 of them, and averaged 14.4 minutes per contest.
As for O’Neal, he doesn’t yet know if he wants to play in what would be his 19th NBA season. While he has plenty of time to make that decision (and could become a late roster addition for a team with championship aspirations), if he does choose to come back, it appears as though it won’t be with the Warriors.