The candidates for the Golden State Warriors’ 15th roster spot have seemingly been eliminated.
Shortly after the Warriors’ 119-97 preseason finale win over the Portland Trail Blazers, the team announced that Avery Bradley was waived.
The Warriors are waiving veteran guard Avery Bradley, sources tell me and @anthonyVslater.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 16, 2021
This comes to no surprise if Bradley’s preseason performance was purely taken into consideration. Averaging 4.3 points, 1.3 rebounds, and 1.0 assist per game on 12.7 minutes per game weren’t enough to convince the Warriors brass to give him the final guaranteed spot; shooting 39.8% from the field and — more importantly — 22.2% from behind the arc perhaps took him out of consideration for good.
Add to those his nondescript performance on the defensive end, where he has built his reputation throughout his career, and it was a foregone conclusion that Bradley wouldn’t make it to the beginning of the regular season.
Meanwhile, Gary Payton II only playing one preseason game — he was unavailable to play against the Blazers tonight — portended the Warriors also waiving him.
Warriors have also waived Gary Payton II. The 15th spot is currently vacant. But Steve Kerr said there will be "discussions" in the coming days about the vacancy. I'm hearing that there is a possibility of bringing Payton back, once the process plays out.— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) October 16, 2021
This doesn’t close the door on Payton completely, however. The Warriors can sign him to a new non-guaranteed deal, one that could provide them with more flexibility than if they decided to fully guarantee Payton’s current non-guaranteed contract that they just waived.
The Warriors have also decided to waive Mychal Mulder and Jordan Bell.
Warriors announce they've waived Bradley, GP2, Mulder, and Bell.— Kerith Burke (@KerithBurke) October 16, 2021
Mulder had some moments in the preseason, but shooting 35% on threes — his perceived area of expertise — could not get him over the hump. The possibility is still there for the Warriors to retain him as one of their two-way-contract players.
Jordan Bell, meanwhile, was always expected to be waived by the Warriors, with a nondescript preseason and his skill-set not fitting the Warriors’ current needs most likely being the main reasons.
Bottom line: The Warriors are going the money-saving route for now by keeping that 15th spot open.