JaVale McGee is, once again, a free agent. And if he has his way he’ll be, once again, signing a contract with the Golden State Warriors.
McGee has played the last two seasons with the team, and has been a feel good story since joining the team in 2016 on a non-guaranteed contract during training camp. He earned a spot on the team, played well, and was re-signed last offseason.
For a while though, it looked like his days with the team were numbered. Last offseason he was rumored to be in search of a bigger role with more money, and took the Warriors contract when the market dried up. Then, halfway through the season, he was reportedly on the trading block, as he wasn’t receiving much playing time at all.
But near the end of the year, McGee started finding his way onto the court, and started a large number of games. His overall playing time remained low, as coach Steve Kerr went with a center by committee based on matchups, but he played important minutes, and was a vital part of the team’s championship push.
And with that all in the rearview mirror, McGee wants to hit the repeat button. And after hitting the repeat button, he wants to hit it again . . . and again . . . and again.
Speaking to ESPN earlier this week, McGee said he hasn’t thought about joining any other teams, because “In my mind, I’m a Warrior for the rest of my career. If that happens, it would be a blessing.”
It’s likely that the team wants to bring him back as well. They had six centers last year, but enter free agency with only two under contract: Jordan Bell, and Damian Jones. That’s a lot of youth.
The team will surely want to upgrade the position over the summer, and McGee is a perfect candidate. Not only is he effective, and has good chemistry with his teammates, but he provides a different look than Bell and Jones, as he offers extreme length, athleticism, and rim-running ability. On top of that, the team knows that McGee is okay with the role they have for him, which is a pretty important element.
While McGee appears fine with whatever role, he also made it clear that he makes a big impact on the court, saying that “The cohesion that we had when I was in the game [in the NBA Finals], it speaks for itself. We swept ‘em. So, it was definitely a beautiful thing and it just felt right. It was just so smooth when I was inserted in there. It was a lot of fun. I want to continue experiencing that.”
We’ll have to wait and see how the Warriors approach the summer. But McGee wanting to return is certainly good news.