At five pm central time free agency had officially begun, and the leading headline that grabbed everyone's attention was Kevin Durant would be leaving the Bay Area for Brooklyn. Just like that, the Warriors dynasty was over.
There was hope that Durant would take the 5 years $221 million dollars super-max contract, but in the end Brooklyn an opportunity to play with close friends was too much to past up. Durant would be teaming up with Kyrie Irving and DeAndre Jordan.
The million dollar question what are the Golden State Warriors going to do next? Yeah Klay Thompson agreed to terms on a 5 year $189.9 million dollar, but he’s going to miss the majority or all of next season.
Kevon Looney is a coveted free agent, Andre Igudola and Shawn Livingston are getting older, and the jury is still out on whether Cousins can get back to himself prior to the Achilles injury. The bench definitely needed to be strengthened, but with who? The Warriors appeared to be taking a step back as they regroup as a franchise.
In classic Warrior fashion, they pull a rabbit out of the hat. They trade Igudola to Memphis and they do a sign and trade with Brooklyn bringing promising young all-star D’Angelo Russell to San Francisco. Nobody saw this coming and with Klay gone to the ACL injury Russell will be expected an able to make an immediate impact with the Warriors. The deal is worth $117 million dollars over 4 years. This give the Warriors a nucleus featuring three all-stars in Curry, Green, and Russell.
The Warriors love players who can play make. With his ability to create his own shot, run the pick n roll effectively, and his ability to catch and shoot Russell should fit in just fine. It goes with out saying you cannot replace one of the best offensive talents the game has ever seen in Kevin Durant. It also goes with out saying you cannot replace the second best shooter in the history of the game in Klay Thompson.
But, D’Angelo Russell at age 23 has the potential to be a star in this league. If he reaches his potential the Warriors will be in position to compete for championships for years to come. Kerr comes from the Popvich tree and a brilliant Spurs organization that is one of the best in the league. With this move today the Warriors are showing why they too are one of the most brilliant well run teams in the NBA.