If you question most serious Golden State Warriors fans about who the team’s two-way contracts were in the 2021-22 NBA season, you’ll probably get a fairly expeditious answer: Chris Chiozza and Quinndary Weatherspoon.
In most cases the answer will end there. Each team is allotted two spots for two-way contracts, and Chiozza and Weatherspoon occupied those two spots.
But there was a third player. Before the Dubs signed Weatherspoon to a two-way, the spot was occupied by Jeff Dowtin, who appeared in exactly four games for Golden State.
With all due respect to Dowtin, he’s easy to forget about, because he barely ever was, in the Warriors sense of the word.
So I wanted to look back and find the rest of the Jeff Dowtins, by looking at every player from the last decade of Warriors basketball who played fewer than 50 minutes in the season. Here they are.
Jeff Dowtin — 28 minutes
Dowtin broke camp alongside Chiozza on a two-way contract. He spent most of the time in Santa Cruz before getting released in early January. He caught on with Milwaukee Bucks and then the Orlando Magic, playing five more games in his debut NBA season.
Gary Payton II — 40 minutes
Marquese Chriss — 27 minutes
Jordan Bell — 15 minutes
This list is largely made up of players you might have forgotten about, but that certainly wasn’t the case in 2020-21, when all three players who fell beneath the 50-minute mark are well known in Dub Nation.
GPII was a late-season addition, existing only on 10-day contracts before signing a non-guaranteed multi-year deal (which he was later cut from) at the end of the year. He didn’t look anything like the breakout player we saw last season, so credit to him for putting it all together.
Bell had already left the Warriors for a while by the time the 2020-21 season came around, but the team needed some extra bodies late in the year, and he was welcomed back into the fold.
And Chriss? Well, most people on this list are there because they didn’t earn minutes. But Chriss’ story was more sad. After a strong 2019-20 season with the Dubs, he was expected to challenge James Wiseman for serious minutes at the center position ... but he broke his leg after just two games.
Jeremy Pargo — 44 minutes
Chasson Randle — 40 minutes
Zach Norvell — 36 minutes
Oh yeah. These are the type of names I was seeking. This was the year the 15-win Warriors had a fire sale at the trade deadline, shipping off names like Alec Burks, Glenn Robinson III, and Willie Cauley-Stein.
In came players like Pargo, Randle, and Norvell to eat up minutes in a lost season. Remember them? It’s OK if the answer to that question is ‘Nope!’
No players on the 2018-19 team played fewer than 50 minutes. Two-way contract Marcus Derrickson, who saw 67 minutes of action in his lone NBA season, was the only player under 100.
Chris Boucher — 1 minute
Boucher, on a two-way contract in his debut NBA season, played for 79 seconds on a championship Warriors team. The Dubs then let him go, stating that they were high on him but needed players that were more ready to contribute.
He’s since become a player ready to contribute. It took a while, but he’s been a key part of the Toronto Raptors rotation for the last two years, and signed a three-year, $35,250,000 contract over the offseason.
Briante Weber — 46 minutes
I have very fond memories of Briante Weber. That’s kind of all I have to say here. We’re officially deep in the thick of things.
Kevon Looney — 21 minutes
Before Looney was a starter and key contributor on the Warriors most recent championship team, he was an injured and inexperienced rookie on the 73-win team.
My my how things have changed!
Another season with no players under 50 minutes. They used only 15 players all season — the same 15 from start to finish (two-ways didn’t yet exist) — with Ognjen Kuzmić recording the lowest tally at 72. James Michael McAdoo played 137 minutes, while Brandon Rush played 271 ... the other 12 players all logged at least 500 minutes.
MarShon Brooks — 15 minutes
Dewayne Dedmon — 6 minutes
I enjoy these two players being on the Warriors for different reasons. Brooks just always makes me smile, because I instantly think of him being part of a failed trade when the Memphis Grizzlies and Phoenix Suns realized they were discussing a deal with different Brooks in mind (Memphis was thinking MarShon, while Phoenix was thinking Dillon).
This was years after his Warriors stint, but I still think of it when I’m reminded that he once donned a Dubs jersey.
And Dedmon? He’s been a quality NBA player, so it’s just a fun bit of trivia to know that he played exactly six minutes with the team, since no one seems to know that he laced them up for Golden State.
Brandon Rush — 25 minutes
Malcolm Thomas — 21 minutes
After a strong 2011-12 with the Dubs, Rush tore his ACL just two games into the 2012-13 season. He later returned to the Warriors (after a stint with the Utah Jazz) and was a key bench player for their first championship and the 73-win season.
Thomas is ... look, all respect to the dude, but if you remember his Warriors career then you’re a very dedicated fan.
Seems like a good place to pull the plug on this exercise.