Eight centers Warriors could grab via buyout, trade or 10-day contract


Eight centers Warriors could grab via buyout, trade or 10-day contract

The Warriors are thin in the frontcourt right now, with just Kevon Looney and Jordan Bell at center. It's also unclear when All-Star DeMarcus Cousins will return to game action, and even if he finally plays for Golden State and is effective, the team still would need another big body.

The Warriors have an open 15th roster spot (which has been by design all along) and can make something happen, should an opportunity arise.

"If something presented itself now or in the next few days, we’d look at it," Warriors GM Bob Myers told reporters on a conference call Monday. "More than likely, it’ll come later, maybe in the form of a buyout or trade.”

The NBA trade deadline isn't until Feb. 7, but a buyout could happen at any time, and teams can sign players to 10-day contracts starting Jan. 5. When the Warriors add another big man also might depend on how Cousins looks when he makes his debut, although there's no timeline for that.

For now, let's look at some of the big men who might interest the Warriors, in no particular order. Keep in mind that this is a very preliminary list, and I'm just an outsider with zero inside information ...

Robin Lopez

The Chicago Bulls center, who has been relegated to the bench in his 11th NBA season, has been mentioned by several publications as a perfect fit for the Warriors. He's making $14.4 million this season, though, so it's safe to assume they will not trade for the Stanford product (and my former teammate).

The only way the 7-footer would end up in the Bay Area is if he and the Bulls agree to a buyout. Warriors coach Steve Kerr knows Lopez well, as he drafted him 15th overall when he was the Phoenix Suns' GM in 2008.

Dewayne Dedmon

The 29-year old is averaging 9.5 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.0 blocks this season, as he has started 17 games for the Atlanta Hawks and averaged 24.2 minutes per night. There has been zero indictation that a buyout is in the works, as he's making just $6.3 million this season, but Dedmon will be an unrestricted free agent this summer, and the Hawks clearly are in tank mode.

Also, Hawks GM Travis Schlenk used to be the Warriors' assistant GM, so you never know ...

Zach Randolph

The 37-year-old hasn't appeared in a single game for the Kings this season. He's making $11.7 million, so like Lopez, only would be an option for the Warriors through a buyout. That's most likely at least five weeks away, as the Kings might be able to package Z-Bo in a trade.

Randolph, Cousins and Draymond Green on the same team would be, um, wild.

Skal Labissiere

Another Kings big man, the 22-year-old has seen action in just 10 games so far this season. The Kings picked up his 2019-20 option, so the Warriors might not want to pay him $2.3 million next season. But he's still young and showed some flashes in his first two NBA seasons, so perhaps he's worth a second-round draft pick in a trade?

Kosta Koufos

Yet another Kings big man! He's making too much money ($8.7 million) to acquire via trade, but if things go south for Sacramento, it might look to save some money with a buyout and let the 29-year old sign with a contender.

Amir Johnson

The 31-year old made just his second start of the season Saturday night in Portland, but only because Joel Embiid didn't suit up. Johnson is averaging just 9.4 minutes per game, but the 76ers probably won't part ways with him because they need him as Embiid insurance. He's making the veteran's minimum, which makes him more attainable.

Deyonta Davis

He plays for the G League Santa Cruz Warriors, and on Saturday night against the Northern Arizona Suns, he scored a season-high 21 points, to go with eight rebounds and two blocks. So, the Warriors easily could add him on a 10-day contract.

The 22-year old was selected 31st overall by the Boston Celtics in 2016, then quickly traded to the Memphis Grizzlies, with whom he averaged 5.8 points and 4.0 rebounds in 62 games last season. He was traded to the Kings in July, then waived in September.

Cameron Oliver

The 22-year-old was born in Oakland and went to Grant Union High School in Sacramento. He went undrafted in 2017 after two seasons at Nevada, and currently plays for the Delaware Blue Coats of the G League, for whom he's averaging 16.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks while shooting just below 60 percent from the field.

It's surprising (or a red flag?) that Oliver isn't even on a two-way contract, so he'd basically be just a 10-day contract option for the Warriors.

Warriors rookie Eric Paschall tries to answer some wild brain busters

Warriors rookie Eric Paschall tries to answer some wild brain busters

NBA All-Star Weekend in Chicago is about more than just what happens on the court. The shenanigans away from the game shine just as bright. And with that come some oddities. 

That includes questions like, "What color is a mirror?" 

That one stumped Warriors rookie Eric Paschall as he let out a high-pitched "huh" in confusion. ESPN asked Paschall and a handful of other players around the league an assortment of brain busters that gave us some hilarious answers. 

Paschall did have the perfect response to being asked, "If humans can't see air, can fish see water?" 

After laughing, Paschall said, "Ask a fish." 

OK, what about if you try to fail and succeed, which have you done? "Succeed," Paschall says. Why? "Because you tried to fail. ... You tried to fail and you did, so you succeeded in your failure. Oh, I'm spittin' knowledge. I'm spittin' knowledge." 

Right, right. 

[RELATED: Paschall impresses in leading Team USA to Rising Stars win]

One thing's for certain: Paschall was spittin' some game Friday night in the 2020 NBA Rising Stars Challenge. Paschall scored a team-high 23 points on 10-of-13 shooting in Team USA's 151-131 comeback win over Team World.

He might be better at busting opponents than spittin' knowledge, but the rookie definitely has been one of the brightest parts of the Warriors' down season.

NBA players 'enjoy' Steph Curry being out, Giannis Antetokounmpo says

NBA players 'enjoy' Steph Curry being out, Giannis Antetokounmpo says

Steph Curry and the Warriors ran roughshod over the NBA for five years, reaching five consecutive NBA Finals and putting together the league’s greatest regular season ever with 73 wins in 2015-16.

The 2019-20 season has not gone quite the same for Golden State, as Curry remains out since suffering a broken hand on Oct. 30. The Warriors now own the league’s worst record at the All-Star break.

It’s safe to say players around the NBA haven’t exactly sympathized with the organization’s precipitous downturn.

"Let me be honest with you," Giannis told reporters Saturday during NBA All-Star Weekend in Chicago. "The players, we kind of enjoy that he's not playing -- not enjoy that he's hurt. We want him to be healthy, but he just makes it way, way tougher for the rest of the league."

[RELATED: Iguodala opens up about Steph defending him on social media]

It’s not the first time players have publicly stated their appreciation for the Warriors no longer being the unstoppable force they became in the 2010s.

The guard definitely has made life more difficult for defenders over the years, as Curry owns four first-team All-NBA honors as well as the most 3-point field goals among active NBA players.

Curry is aiming to return to the court in early March, and the Warriors will play the Bucks on March 14. Antetokounmpo’s reprieve from facing the two-time MVP might not last much longer, then.