Warriors

Lacob: Warriors 'committed to winning' no matter finances

Warriors
Steph Curry and Joe Lacob

Warriors CEO Joe Lacob said Tuesday that Golden State had a "very, very challenging year" financially due to the still-ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Warriors spent deep into the luxury tax to trade for Kelly Oubre Jr. after Klay Thompson sustained a season-ending torn Achilles, unable to host fans at Chase Center at the time because of the pandemic. Chase Center will open at 35 percent capacity for the Warriors' game against the Denver Nuggets on April 23, five months after acquiring Oubre.

Golden State's gamble hasn't quite paid off, with the 26-28 Warriors ending Tuesday as the Western Conference's 10th seed. That record's good enough for a one-game lead on the New Orleans Pelicans for the final play-in spot, which isn't a great return on the NBA's largest luxury tax bill.

Of course, the bill doesn't affect the Warriors' ability to acquire players as a hard salary cap does in other sports, provided that ownership is willing to spend. After a second consecutive season affected by a pandemic, Lacob indicated the Warriors are prepared to continue to spend.

"[What] most people want to know is, 'Are we committed to winning no matter what?' No one wants to hear about how much money we're making or losing," Lacob told reporters Tuesday in a video conference naming Brandon Schneider team president and chief operating officer to replace the retiring Rick Welts.

 

"[The finances are] something for us to worry about," Lacob said. "The truth is that we are committed to winning. We have great resources, it's been challenging, but we are gonna continue to do everything we need to do to stay on top and be the best that we can possibly be, both as a business and on the basketball court."

The Warriors face quite a few dilemmas this offseason, Oubre -- a pending unrestricted free agent -- chief among them.

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Coach Steve Kerr said last month Golden State envisions Oubre as a sixth man when Thompson is healthy, while Oubre said he can offer more than playing as a reserve. Saying anything less could limit his bargaining power this summer, particularly after number of teams reportedly expressed interest in Oubre ahead of the trade deadline.

Whether or not they retain Oubre, the Warriors' cap situation means that a max contract -- one of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green or Andrew Wiggins -- would have to go out in order for Golden State to acquire another. There's no looming salary-cap spike, so a hefty tax bill would follow the Warriors' path back to contention.

On Tuesday, Lacob sounded willing to foot it.

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