As the focus is on the Golden State Warriors’ draft, the team still needs to fill its backcourt. Key re-signings include Brandon Rush and Dominic McGuire, but the Dubs need a backup point guard, particularly if Stephen Curry gets injured.
With the wealth of talent from former stars, the Warriors have a lot of choices. However, the Dubs only have the mid-level exception (about $5 million) to offer. They are building a foundation that is attractive to players at the end of their career.
Names like Jason Kidd, Gilbert Arenas, Andre Miller, Kirk Hinrich and Brandon Roy are all available as unrestricted free agents. Which one of those guys would be attractive to the Dubs?
Steve Nash, although he is getting up in age, is still a borderline-elite point guard. Unless miracles happen, you can count him out of the Dubs' free-agent grab.
Let’s take a closer look at the possibilities.
Jason Kidd could return to his childhood hometown.
The major advantage that the Dubs have over the competition is that the organization can offer Kidd a lifetime-type contract. The contract would assure him a job in the organization far after his playing days are over, with the ability to allow Kidd to "retire" in his childhood hometown.
Gilbert Arenas could succeed in a homecoming.
"Shock value" is the first thing that comes to your mind as I suggest this.
However, Arenas made a name for himself as a second-round draft choice for the Dubs in 2001. He was a standout on the team for two years before he became unaffordable. The "Gilbert Arenas Provision" was created to make it easier to re-sign restricted free agents who had not been first-round picks.
Yes, Arenas has done some pretty stupid things in the recent past, but this could be his opportunity to show the world that he still has what it takes to be a productive NBA player.
Andre Miller is a proven leader that is available.
Andre Miller has been around the league a while and is still considered a great floor general. His play with the Nuggets might have elevated his value over the mid-level exception, but the Warriors could really sell him on their foundation and the possibility of increased minutes with Stephen Curry’s injury history.
He averaged 9.7 PPG and 6.7 APG, and he still plays good defense, a quality that Mark Jackson admires. Miller would be a team leader on a young team, and has a ton of playoff experience to boot.
Kirk Hinrich would be a good option if healthy.
At 31 years old, Kirk Hinrich is a great backup point guard who can provide a necessary veteran presence to the Warriors.
The nine-year veteran just finished his second injury-riddled season with the Hawks; his two seasons with them were probably his worst two seasons as a pro. Hinrich does have a nearly 3-to-1 assist to turnover ratio (5.4 to 2.0) during his career.
On top of that, ESPN’s Jared Zwerling reported via Twitter that Hinrich won’t be willing to sign for the veteran’s minimum, according to sources.
If he wants to continue his career, he should reconsider.
Brandon Roy could be a steal if his knees hold up.
The 6'6" guard was released by Portland, announced his retirement and was amnestied before last season because of his chronic knee problems.
He has a lot of mileage on him for such a short career, but hopefully, with the year off, he can return to some semblance of his former self.
Roy is being courted by the Warriors, along with the Timberwolves and a few other teams.
In his five seasons with the Blazers, Roy averaged 19 PPG, 4.7 APG and 4.3 RPG.
Other lesser known possibilities to fill the Warriors backcourt include: Goran Dragic, Raymond Felton, Jonny Flynn and last year’s point guard, Nate Robinson.
My hope is that the Dubs get a backup guard who fits their system, and someone who can fill in at a moment’s notice.
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