I think it's fair to say that the Golden State Warriors' offseason has gone better than expected.
Even if you lament the loss of Jarrett Jack, Carl Landry, and Brandon Rush (or Andris Biedrins and Richard Jefferson), the Warriors have made moves to become among the best defensive teams the franchise has known in decades.
And it can all become official today when we will finally get the details of how they'll pull all of this off. But first we'll start with the signings announced yesterday, which leave them with a pair of spots that could be up for grabs for someone on the summer league roster.
Jermaine O'Neal chooses the Warriors: After days of rumors saying he was choosing between the Warriors and the Dallas Mavericks, O'Neal chose the Warriors yesterday. And how cool is it that someone actually chose the Warriors over another team? Marcus Thompson of the Bay Arena News Group described him as, "...a reliable place holder until backup center Festus Ezeli recovers from knee surgery." However, he's coming off of arguably one of his best seasons in years with the Phoenix Suns last season so it's not a stretch to imagine him actually earning minutes once Ezeli returns.
Warriors sign Toney Douglas: Douglas has a reputation as a defensive guy, but Kurt Helin of NBC's ProBasketballTalk took the opposite perspective: "...he’s an aggressive score-first guard who can space the floor with a three point shot (38 percent last season). He has nights where he can just light it up, but he’s not as helpful on the defensive end (he has defensive skills but he’s not consistent)." Still, let's be real - if he signs for something close to the minimum, he could become a huge asset. Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the Warriors are, "...still working on the outside chance of landing a sign-and-trade deal with Sacramento since Douglas last played there and Landry has agreed to a four-year, $26-million offer from the Kings."
Warriors can't negotiate sign-and-trade for Marreese Speights: Similar to what the Warriors are looking to do for Douglas, they attempted to work out a sign-and-trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers involving Speights and Jarrett Jack who will also be switching teams. As multiple outlets have reported, that didn't work out.
Since Cleveland wouldn't do a trade for Speights, his contract will take up part of the Warriors' MLE, which NBA announced is $5.15 million— Marcus Thompson (@gswscribe) July 10, 2013
Nemanja Nedovic has signed with the Warriors: The Warriors have signed first round draft pick Nemanja Nedovic and he will play in the Las Vegas Summer League in the opener on July 13 before honoring his commitment to the Serbian National team, as reported by CSN Bay Area.
Now it's time to figure out the salary cap: The NBA's salary cap for the 2013-14 season also went into effect at 9:01 p.m. PST last night. The cap has been set at $58.679 million and the luxury tax threshold at $71.748 million. For an overview of what this might mean for the Warriors' financial picture, check out the fan shot by Little Bobby Tables who has laid out the estimated salary info for the new additions, the depth chart, and a projected minutes distribution.
No one knows for certain. We've got to see how the NBA considers GSW's offseason moves. RT @Shinehart How much is GSW under/over that cap?— Rusty Simmons (@Rusty_SFChron) July 10, 2013
Regardless of how the final salary numbers look, the Warriors are getting rave reviews: Chris Sheridan posted on Sulia that, "The Warriors are adding the pieces that championship contenders add" and he's absolutely right. No longer are they just searching for talent to fill out the roster - this is a team that has developed an identity around a clear core of players and has added players who will complement that. It's been a very long time since the Warriors have operated from a secure place like that.
Last year's roster needed to trade 2 players to get under tax. So that means Warriors arguably improved the roster WHILE trimming salary— Marcus Thompson (@gswscribe) July 10, 2013
Random tweet: This is an important question, involving a pair of former Boston Celtics.
Do I wait and get a Jermaine O'Neal jersey when he signs with the Warriors. Or do I save money and buy a Scalabrine clip board??— Kerry Crowley (@VeryKerry3) July 9, 2013
As usual, feel free to drop your thoughts and additional news about today's signings in the comments as they happen. And of course, if you have a longer commentary to make or links you think should be promoted to the front page, feel free to make a fan post or fan shot to share with the community. Happy signing day!