With the NBA offseason continuing to play out, teams continue to chase the success of the Golden State Warriors following their fourth title in the last eight years. The Warriors are among the teams with the lowest current available cap space in the league, leaving the front office to make a few difficult decisions in the near future.
According to the latest report, Draymond Green will be seeking out a maximum contract extension with the Warriors when he becomes eligible on August 3rd. The 32-year old has the opportunity to decline his $27.5 million player option for the 2023-24 season and instead sign a four-year, $138.4 million extension with Golden State. For the upcoming season, Green is scheduled to earn $25.8 million.
On the other side, the Golden State Warriors do not appear to be in a rush to extend Green at this time. Key players such as Jordan Poole, Klay Thompson, and Andrew Wiggins will all be in line to receive potential maximum extensions soon enough as well. All three players are under contract through the 2023-24 season, putting the Warriors in a potentially compromising position.
The 2021-22 season saw Green average 7.5 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 7.0 assists per game. While the numbers won’t catch many eyes, his efforts do play a role in the Warriors winning games, especially on the defensive end. His 102.1 defensive rating was the highest its been since the 2017-18 season; a year in which Green finished with a 104.6 defensive rating. In addition, his 21.7% defensive rebound rate for Golden State last season also tied a career-high alongside his 2015-16 season.
However, the NBA is a business at the end of the day. Would the Golden State Warriors be wise or foolish to pay Draymond Green until he is 37-years old?
According to reports, a major advocate for the Warriors to re-sign Green to a long-term extension is his longtime teammate Stephen Curry. The report goes into depth about how Curry “would not be happy if the Warriors lost Green because the team didn’t want to pay him”.
Last season, the Warriors paid a league record $346 million in luxury taxes and player penalties. By distributing a long-term extension to Green, the front office could be facing upwards of $400 million, a price clearly too high to afford.
At this time, Green is likely to decline his player option for the 2023-24 season if the two sides can not come to an agreement on a long-term extension. By declining the player option, he is likely to command and receive a max contract, regardless of whether it’s with Golden State or elsewhere. Among the suitors would be the Detroit Pistons, in which there are clear Michigan ties. In November of 2021, it was reported that Damian Lillard was once “obsessed” with the idea of the Portland Trail Blazers acquiring Green, should he become available as well.
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