The Golden State Warriors will be looking to solidify their small forward slot and add depth this summer, and there are quite a few good names available who will be restricted free agents.
With just around a mid-level exception to play with, the Warriors must use what money they do have wisely. While most of their roster is set, they are far from a lock to play in the postseason.
Restricted free agents can be hard to sign—just wait and see how hard it will be for some other team to sign away Brandon Rush from them. However, that doesn't mean the Warriors should shy away from sniping another team's RFA.
Here are seven restricted free agents the Warriors should be looking at who could realistically be brought to the Bay.
The Warriors would be extremely lucky to land a guy like Omer Asik—so would a lot of other teams.
Asik really impressed the way he filled in for an injured Joakim Noah, and he looks like he will be a very solid defender for many years. His offensive game isn't the best, but with only two years of NBA experience, he has plenty of room to grow.
The Chicago Bulls do have Carlos Boozer, Noah and Taj Gibson, so they might not be able to afford him, but they would be foolish not to retain him. However, it wouldn't hurt the Warriors to see if it's possible to get Asik to play for them.
Asik would be a tremendous backup to David Lee and Andrew Bogut, providing tough defense and rebounding.
While Nicolas Batum would be a dream scenario for the Warriors, whispers that he may get a max contract or something close to it all but takes the Warriors out of the running for his services.
Michael Beasley, though, could be an option to supplant the small forward position for the Warriors.
Beasley has all the talent in the world, but he has yet to live up to his potential.
With Derrick Williams ready to break out, the Minnesota Timberwolves may no longer have a need for Beasley. And with his reputation, potential suitors might be scared off by him.
Still only 23 years old, Beasley is not the defensive stopper the Warriors are really looking for, but he would be the best small forward on this team. If he indeed is a "late bloomer," the Warriors would be getting a No. 2 pick for (hopefully) a discounted rate.
Jeremy Evans, The Human Pogo Stick, might be the steal of this summer's restricted free-agent class.
Buried on the bench in Utah, Evans has the athletic ability to become a factor in the NBA. If nothing else, he would bring a lot of excitement to whatever team he lands on, as he jumps like he has springs in his shoes.
He offensive game needs a lot of work, but if he adds strength and gets any kind of consistent minutes, Evans could develop into an energy guy off the bench who can defend.
He has all the athletic ability in the world, maybe all he needs is the chance to prove himself. With all the young talented forwards the Utah Jazz have, they might have trouble matching any offer that comes Evans' way.
Plus, how much fun would it be to watch him finish off dunks like this next year?
Terrence Williams came on strong late last season and showed that he is capable of becoming a rotation guy in the NBA. Williams always had the potential, and now he might actually be able to live up to it.
What's special about Williams is that he is a great ball-handler—can any team have too many of those guys?
A small forward who can play point forward, Williams can create shots for others and would be able to take some of the ball-handling duties away from Stephen Curry, allowing him to play more off the ball to be used as more of a scoring guard at times.
Williams would give the Warriors some versatility at small forward.
The Warriors have reportedly had interest in Robin Lopez, and it makes sense to look at signing Lopez this summer.
He shouldn't be the Warriors' first choice this summer, because while he would provide depth at center, he is not a dynamic player by any means. However, he does bring a lot of energy, which is something that is missing from the Warriors bench (from any of the big men, anyway).
At the right price, Lopez would be a good, albeit unexciting, addition to the Warriors bench next season.
Greg Stiemsma has been a pleasant surprise for the Boston Celtics, and he would make an outstanding backup on the Warriors' front line.
A shot-blocking extraordinaire, Stiemsma would be exactly what the Warriors need off the bench, providing defensive and rebounding in the post.
Depending on what happens with the Boston Celtics, who have quite a few free-agents-to-be, they may not make Stiemsma part of their long-term plans.
Marreese Speights could give the Warriors the offensive lift they are missing in the post off the bench next season.
Lee and Bogut are not going to be playing the whole game, and with just Andris Biedrins and young Jeremy Tyler backing them up, the Warriors need a guy like Speights to give them a legitimate scorer off the bench.
With the Memphis Grizzlies already over the salary cap and O.J. Mayo as a restricted free agent himself, Speights should be someone the Warriors consider signing this summer.