OAKLAND, Calif — The Golden State Warriors defeated the Brooklyn Nets Saturday night at Oracle arena 112-95. Kevin Durant took the night off with a sore left hand bug his absence did not have much effect on the final outcome.
As the Warriors depart for Philadelphia on Sunday, they will do so with an open roster spot: Briante Weber’s second 10-day contract expired Saturday night after Golden State’s win vs. Brooklyn.
Head coach Steve Kerr said that the Warriors will not be bringing back Weber for an additional 10-day contract after the game, leaving the 15th and final roster spot on Golden State open and for the taking.
Who will fill the final spot?
Well, I know for certain who will not take the final spot, and that is Andrew Bogut. The Warriors can technically re-sign Bogut, who was traded from Golden State to Dallas over the summer, but since Dallas proceeded to trade Bogut to Philadelphia, the CBA rules only prohibit the players’ last team from re-signing the said player. Therefore only Dallas cannot resign Bogut, thus opening up the market for the veteran center.
While re-signing Bogut would be a feel good story for Warriors’ fans, his comments in the beginning of the season leave me to believe that there is a zero percent change that the Aussie big man will re-join the Warriors.
So who does that leave for the Warriors to sign?
Matt Barnes, who was a former member of the ‘We Believe’ Warriors has been thrown around. Barnes was waived by the Kings last week in part of the DeMarcus Cousins trade. While Golden State is in need of an additional wing defender, it does not seem likely the the Warriors will look to sign the 36-year-old veteran.
Kerr has stated that the Warriors are looking to sign a guard, and all signs are pointing towards veteran point guard Jose Claderon. In order for Golden State to sign Calderon, he must first come to terms with a buyout with the Los Angeles Lakers, who he is still under contract with.
“It’ll be a point guard,” Kerr said after Saturday night’s win vs. the Nets. “We think we have something in place, but it’s not finalized. Got to wait until it’s official.”
While the mystery for who will fill the the 15th and final roster spot is intriguing, it is difficult to place how much importance this final spot plays into the grand scheme of things.
Calderon is 35-years-old and brings a much different skill set to the table compared to the younger, and much quicker, Weber. It looks like only a buy out and physical is holding back Calderon from signing with the Warriors.
Sources: Once Jose Calderon is bought out by #Lakers, his next move is taking a physical before joining #Warriors.— Monte Poole (@MontePooleCSN) February 26, 2017
This move does not hurt the Warriors, nor does it make them stronger. At this point of the season, they are who they are. The veteran leadership of Claderon should be an asset to the end of the Warriors bench. However with big name free agents like Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant looming in the coming years, young and cheap talent like Weber will defeintely be of utmost importance to the Warriors’ front office.
The Warriors are 49-9 and just became the fastest team to clinch a playoff birth in NBA history, breaking their own record from a season ago. Whoever they choose to fill their final roster spot will not make or break their season. But when a team is as over analyzed and scrutinized as much as this Golden State Warriors team is, any and every roster move is a big deal.