Warriors owner Joe Lacob always has been obviously optimistic about his organization, and he’s had a lot of reason to be over the last five seasons.
No team in the 21st century has been to five consecutive NBA Finals, and this past week, the Warriors officially moved their offices into their privately owned, shiny new billion-dollar arena right on San Francisco Bay.
The Warriors’ offseason was not a success in the eyes of just about everyone else, though, as the team lost Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala and DeMarcus Cousins, and enters a new era in San Francisco with more questions than answers regarding the organization’s future.
Lacob said after Durant’s departure in July that no Warrior would ever wear No. 35 while the team still was under his ownership. He joined The Athletic’s Tim Kawakami on “The TK Show” podcast this week, and clarified his thoughts regarding whether KD’s number will join the likes of Wilt Chamberlain and Al Attles in the rafters at Chase Center.
“The intention is to retire his number, but we specifically said it that way, for now,” Lacob told Kawakami. “Because he’s still playing, it's kind of inappropriate to some extent to say you're gonna retire his number when he's still playing in the league, but that's the intention.”
When asked about Iguodala’s No. 9, Lacob echoed a similar sentiment.
“We always wanna be gracious. I’ve said all along, he and any player like Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, whoever it is, a free agent, it's their choice. They earned it,” Lacob said. “They have the right to make the choice they want to make.”
Interestingly enough, both Durant and Iguodala might be sporting new numbers in 2019-20, as KD switched to No. 7 with the Nets, while Iggy has yet to be assigned a number by the Grizzlies.
Regardless of how the rest of their respective careers goes, the two undoubtedly are two of the most impactful players in Warriors history.
Iguodala came in and completed Golden State’s original championship core, helping lead the team to its first NBA title since 1966-67. He won Finals MVP in 2015 after consistently slowing down LeBron James throughout the series in what was a down time for the Warriors' other stars.
KD joined the Warriors in the most controversial free-agent decision in league history (at the time) and made Golden State one of the best NBA dynasties of all time, capturing two Finals MVP trophies during his three seasons in Oakland.