Even after last night's wild sequence of events, Chris Mullin still has a lot of work to do. Not even counting possible trade scenarios, re-signing players such as Barnes, Pietrus, and Azubuike, as well as bringing in restricted and unrestricted free agents, has to be on the minds of the Warriors front office.
Mullin's track record of signing players, however, is now bordering on comical. Since he became GM, he has made five major multi-year signings: Jason Richardson, Troy Murphy, Adonal Foyle, Derek Fisher, and Mike Dunleavy for roughly 27 years and $248M combined. First, Fisher was traded in a salary dump. Second, the Warriors tried in vain to buyout Foyle's contract. Third, the DunMurphy combination was dealt in a deal that surpised just about everyone who had ever watched those two play and cost the Warriors an extra young player in Ike. Now, Mullin deals J-Rich, who everyone described as the heart and soul of the team, in what is basically another salary dump. It's not a true dump like the Fisher deal, as the W's clearly are getting some talent in return, but if J-Rich made half of what he currently makes, this deal would not have been on the table.
So, the questions are:
- Can Chris Mullin, given his track record of signing players, really be trusted to continue to sign both free agents and homegrown talents?
- Will players (and more importantly, their agents) trust Mully enough to sign with the Warriors? In other words, would a player like Matt Barnes want to sign a nice multi-year deal with the Warriors when, given recent history, it's more than likely he would finish his contract playing for another team?