San Francisco, CA – The Golden State Warriors are healthy and ready to defend their NBA title. They will be one of the very best teams in the league this year, but problems could be in their future. After this season, Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins, and Jordan Poole could all be free agents.
Contract years are always a big deal, but as professionals, athletes usually make sure they say the right things publicly or try their best. On Sunday, that’s what the Warriors stars did at Media Day. If it’s going to be problems in the future, the trio did an excellent job at keeping it professional.
#3 Jordan Poole
Next summer will be the Warriors’ fourth-year guard’s first time having a big contract. So, remaining a Warrior next year is Poole’s plan. But his future with the team isn’t set in stone. That is going to be one of his biggest problems this season. He answered openly when asked about going into the season without an extension.
“However we go into the season is however we go in,” Poole told Sideline Sources. “I’m going to play my game, continue to be me, and put everything forth to help us win games, whatever the situation or circumstance is.”
Over the years, Poole has developed into one of the best scorers and playmakers on the team. Last season he averaged a career-high 18.5 points, 4.0, and 3.4 rebounds.
#22 Andrew Wiggins
Last season’s Warriors team was full of players who never played deep into the postseason. Wiggins was one of those players, and he didn’t disappoint. The defensive-minded wing did everything possible to help the Warriors win a championship. But, it might not have happened if it wasn’t for him and his excellent play.
At Media Day, Wiggins seemed unbothered about his contract and was very professional when answering questions.
“I know my agents and the team probably have a plan or something,” Wiggins explained. “Right now, I’m just focused on the season and what’s coming ahead.”
Last year Wiggings made his first All-Star appearance averaging 17.2 points on 46.6 percent shooting.
#23 Draymond Green
The last player who could end up a free agent is the heart and soul of the Warriors dynasty, Green. The defensive genius just had one of the better seasons in his career. At 32 years old, things are a little tricky, especially if Green demands a max deal. Last year he showed he has a lot left in the tank, but younger talents are in contract negotiations too.
The outspoken Green expressed his thoughts on receiving an extension done this season at Media Day. But, he kept it as real as possible, as he typically does.
“I mean, at this point, whether I’d like to or not is — I don’t think it will happen,” Green told the media. “So for me, I’m just focused on this season and being as great as I can be, and as I know, I’m capable of being and winning another championship and reaching my individual goals that I have as well. So I think that’s my main focus.”
Last season Green made his fourth All-Star appearance. He also put together a season that placed him in the Defensive Player of the Year conversation. Many people believe he would have run away with the award if he didn’t miss time because of an injury.
#30 Stephen Curry weighs in on problems
It’s only the beginning. Contract conversations will continue. These talks will include the three players involved and players outside of the negotiations. Superstar Stephen Curry will have plenty to say about what happens moving forward. Sunday, he made that very clear at Media Day.
“A good organization is going to have those talks,” Curry told Sideline Sources. “Especially with me, Andre (Iguodala), Draymond, we have those conversations, knowing that every decision is meaningful in terms of us putting the best team together and keeping things moving in terms of being championship contenders every single year.”
There are contract problems in all sports every season. The key is figuring out how not to let it impact the team on the court. Curry believes it starts with communication.
“You want that to be the spirit of how decisions are made and, you know, we want the best chance to win every single year,” Curry said. “And we’re proving with this squad, that’s what the results have been. So we want to keep that together for as long as we can. That’s the goal.”
If the Warriors can reach agreements with these three players, it almost guarantees success beyond this season.