Warriors

Iguodala's return gives Warriors exactly what they were looking for

Warriors
Andre Iguodala

The Warriors entered free agency looking for seasoned veterans with playoff experience who could help them in a title hunt.

It should come as no surprise that an old friend answered the call to help Golden State in an area it needed most. On Friday, Andre Iguodala announced he planned to sign with the Warriors and finish his career in the Bay.

In what might be described as their own version of "The Last Dance," Iguodala returns to a Warriors team that has missed the playoffs in each of the last two seasons as they try to find a way to reboot their dynasty for the remaining years of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green's prime.

In Iguodala, 37, the Warriors get a veteran wing defender who has experience playing under the brightest lights. The 2015 NBA Finals MVP also should serve as a good mentor for first-round picks Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody as well as someone who can help Andrew Wiggins elevate his game.

On the court, Iguodala's play has dropped off a touch since leaving Golden State. Last season, he averaged 4.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists while shooting 38.3 percent from the field and 33.0 percent from the 3-point line for the Miami Heat. In his final season with the Warriors in 2018-19, Iguodala 5.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game.

But Iguodala's return, which reportedly is for the veteran's minimum, gives the Warriors two things they need: Wing depth and secondary ball-handler who can run the offense with the second unit when Curry sits.

 

Iguodala checks both of those boxes.

While a little long in the tooth, Iguodala has an incredibly high basketball IQ, is a fantastic passer and cutter, and will garner a lot of respect the moment he steps in the locker room.

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Moreover, Iguodala's love for the Warriors franchise and Curry undoubtedly will have him even more motivated to finish his career playing good basketball while trying to help Curry, Thompson and Green capture another title and silence those who left them for dead after the 2019 NBA Finals loss.

The return reeks of nostalgia for the glory days, of times thought to be long since past. That's OK. It's the kind that can give the franchise a lift, and Iguodala's presence can be a boon that can't be quantified.

And rest assured, he'll be ready to empty whatever he has left in the tank for one last run with the Warriors.

Grade: B

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