And if you've been following this site for any amount of time throughout all of that speculation, you know that that trade is not entirely about the Warriors improving as a team — this was primarily about the Warriors making cuts from their 2015-16 payroll and (perhaps) secondarily, doing David Lee a favor by sending him to a team where he could earn some significant playing time in the final year of his contract. A couple of tweets in reaction to the trade put the financial value of this deal in perspective.
Although GSW signed Barbosa to $2.5 Tax ML. He will cost them close to an extra $9m in luxury taxes. GSW tax bill right around $48m— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) July 7, 2015
One more time: Looks like the Warriors cut their projected total 2015-16 outlay from about $150M to about $128M: http://t.co/Qk5eg3trNi— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) July 7, 2015
When you consider the cost of each deal once the luxury tax is added to the whole, even saving $5 million dollars (or spending $2.5 million, for that matter) can make a huge difference to the folks paying the bills.
Before even thinking ahead to what Wallace might add to this team, the Warriors helped themselves with this trade while negotiating from a position of significant disadvantage since everyone and their mama knew they were trying to move Lee — it's a mutually beneficial deal for the Warriors, Boston Celtics and David Lee on a few different levels.
Accounting for Wallace, well...wait and see?
Hint for Warriors fans: be looking for players on other teams making $10M or less who can help Dubs and be acquired for Gerald Wallace— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) July 7, 2015
Is their a 3rd team involved for this BOS/GSW trade? Interesting to see how this plays out.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) July 7, 2015
Despite the Warriors reportedly being interested in keeping (or, at least, not waiving) Wallace, they could a) save more money or b) flip Wallace's smaller contract for a player (read: shooter?) with a contract of approximately the same size on a team that couldn't have otherwise absorbed Lee's contract. And we still have to remember two additional things:
- Trades still can't be completed during this period, hypothetically giving the Warriors more time to negotiate a three-way.
- They will not be able to trade Wallace until 60 days after the trade is officially completed.
So it could really be a while before this particular line of transactions ends up being complete.
Could the Warriors cut even more off their payroll? Possibly. Will there be a big splashy trade that we'll be able to trace back directly to Lee? Probably not.
And even if nothing more happens, you can't be too mad at an owner thinking, "I'd really like to save that 20 million dollars or so."
But how do you grade this trade? Vote in the poll below and share your thoughts in the comments.
Follow along with the Warriors' offseason moves by checking out our free agency section.