Sources: With guard logjam, Warriors willing to help their free agent Jordan Crawford with sign-and-trade deal. http://t.co/vBcJMEbQlp #NBA— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) July 9, 2014
The Golden State Warriors allowed Jordan Crawford to become an unrestricted free agent by not extending him a qualifying offer, as they would rather see him go elsewhere instead of return.
Apparently, his skills of inefficient shooting, lackadaisical if not nonexistent defense, and horrific court vision are no longer needed on a Golden State team now heavily prioritizing effectiveness in all three areas.
Crawford mostly frustrated fans, writers, coaches, and fellow players in the rare time he was on the court for Golden State after being traded from Boston in January. Among the ten Warriors who played at least 15 minutes per game this past season, Crawford had the lowest plus-minus at -2.2, per NBA.com.
He jacked up shots as though he cared not whether they went in or not, but whether they had a super-high arc on the way to the basket. Crawford's isolation habits led to the Warriors scoring nearly seven points per 100 possessions less than their average of 105.3 points per 100 possessions, per NBA.com. It was discouraging to watch Crawford when he was in the game: all about "me-me-me," only using possessions as a vessel to go 1-on-5.
Indeed, his 27% usage rate measured higher than all Warriors, except for Stephen Curry, who played at least ten games for Golden State. That, in and of itself, is an ugly statistic. How does Jordan Crawford finish 27 percent of all possessions that he was on the floor for the Warriors? By the way, during the playoffs, that usage rate somehow rose to nearly 30 percent. Also during the postseason, Crawford infamously hip-checked Darren Collison during the final stages of the Game 2 massacre in Los Angeles, an act that originally garnered him an ejection but was downgraded to a Flagrant One.
Crawford's reputation as a ball-stopping guard - a gunner - had preceded him before he was acquired by Golden State. Yet the Warriors' brass was convinced after Crawford started 35 games for the Boston Celtics, a team that would eventually finish with one of the ten worst records in the NBA, that Crawford would be the bench scorer which Golden State desperately needed.
Of course, we now know how that turned out: He rode the pine for the rest of the year after being traded to the Warriors; as a result, Golden State panic-traded for Steve Blake at the deadline, a move that worked out as bad or even worse for the Dubs; Crawford somehow played worse during the postseason than in the regular season; and Bob Myers and Co. decided not to offer him a qualifying offer.
The Warriors cycled through inefficient backup guards - Toney Douglas, Crawford, MarShon Brooks (remember him?), and Steve Blake - all season, that each had one or two specific strengths but faltered tremendously when given more than ten minutes per game; they severely mismanaged their backup guard situation last season. Hopefully next season, Bob Myers and the front office learns from their mistakes, and Steve Kerr and the new assistant coaches Ron Adams and Alvin Gentry, procured from Boston and the Clippers, respectively, use the backup guards - including Shaun Livingston - much more efficiently in ways that are tiered to make their strengths as evident as possible.
Thus Crawford is now an unrestricted free agent. Let someone else pay him next season, and beyond.