The Warriors have an open roster spot that they've kept for a potential buyout candidate. If they had Robin Lopez at the very top of their wish list, it appears they need to find a new No. 1.
In order to be playoff eligible, Lopez and the Bulls would need to agree to a buyout by 8:59p.m. PT tonight. But all indications point to the big man staying with Chicago for the rest of the year.
As K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune writes:
There are many reasons why Lopez will remain with the Bulls past Friday’s deadline to be waived and eligible for the playoffs with another team. His critical role and strong communication with the coaching staff and management are among them.
Lopez, who is averaging 16.4 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.8 blocks over his last nine games, sounds committed to the Bulls.
“It’s been so much fun playing with these guys,” Lopez told the Tribune. “It’s something I want to be a part of the rest of the season. There’s something to be said for doing things a certain way.
"It’s really cool what we’re trying to build here right now. I think we have some great pieces on all levels — coaching level, player level. We’re coming together to do something really special.”
Although the Bulls are headed for a top-five pick in the NBA draft, they have won four of their last five games.
Lopez is in the final season of the four-year, $54 million deal he signed with the Knicks back in the summer of 2015. He will be an unrestricted free agent in July.
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If he doesn't end up with the Warriors this season, he could be a Golden State target this summer.
“My body still feels OK,” he added. “As long as they’ll have me, I’m genuinely still enjoying myself. I’ll keep doing it as long as I can.”