A key candidate to go? Andrew Bogut.
Golden State drafted Vanderbilt center Damian Jones with the No. 30 pick. Under certain scenarios, the Warriors could keep Festus Ezeli‘s relatively low cap hold on the books, sign Durant then exceed the cap to re-sign Ezeli with his Bird Rights. Plus, Draymond Green can play some center.
Drafting Jones also was, according to league sources, an indication of the team’s frustration with starting big man Andrew Bogut, who is a candidate to be moved should the Warriors succeed in their pursuit of upcoming free agent Kevin Durant.
The Warriors, should they win the race to KD, will have to shed salary and several sources indicate they’d like to move Bogut as much if not more than anyone else.
the team has grown frustrated by Bogut’s unreliability, particularly in times of greatest need. Because he turns 32 in November, it’s unrealistic to expect much to change.
Bogut’s well-documented injury history, according to sources, accounts for only part of the team’s annoyance.
The Warriors apparently were displeased with much of Bogut’s postseason work prior to the injury.
Though the team firmly believes Bogut’s value is only partially reflected in his individual statistics, his numbers were nonetheless unkind, particularly as related to rebounds – which became an increasingly higher priority as the Warriors continued their march through the postseason.
Bogut had his moments during the playoffs, but he was far from reliable. He missed Games 6 and 7 of the Finals due to injury, and while that’s not his fault, it’s another example of his fragility. Bogut has missed 12, 15, 15, 50, 54, 17, 13 and 46 games the last eight years. As Poole wrote, Bogut’s age doesn’t suggest Bogut will suddenly become healthier.
Still, he’s a superb defender. The Warriors would be worse without him – unless trading him yields a better return.
Removing Bogut’s $12,681,081 expiring contract from the books projects to open enough space to give Durant a max salary. With the salary cap booming, Bogut’s salary won’t be onerous. Golden State should have no trouble moving him.
Trading Bogut to facilitate a Durant signing also makes sense, because Bogut publicly questioned the Warriors’ Durant pursuit.
This is just another sign Bogut and Golden State are headed in opposite directions.