When the Warriors' dynasty began, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green were the learners. As Golden State aims to return to NBA title contention as soon as next season, the trio will need to be the masters.
Curry (32), Thompson and Green (both 30) are three oldest Warriors under contract for next season, and the only three players older than 30. Those three, along with 24-year-old Kevon Looney, are the only remaining contributors from any of Golden State's title-winning teams.
Gone are veteran voices like Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston and David West, and the Warriors' Big 3 will be relied upon as tenured leaders. General manager and president of basketball operations Bob Myers isn't counting on them to do it alone, though, and he said Golden State will prioritize adding experience this offseason.
"[We] do need some veterans still," Myers said Wednesday in a video conference with reporters. "Our three core guys ... are going to have to be the veterans, but we want to give them some older voices, as well, so that's something we're going to have to look at in free agency."
The Warriors embraced their youth movement after the trade deadline, overhauling their roster and consistently trotting out young lineups before the season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. That was largely out of necessity, with Curry (broken hand) suiting up just once and Thompson (ACL rehab) not at all after the deadline.
Players like Eric Paschall and Marquese Chriss assumed bigger roles playing out the stretch, but Golden State remains light on playoff experience outside of Curry, Thompson, Green and Looney. Wiggins is the only other player to play in the postseason, and he only has appeared in one playoff series.
The Warriors will get younger in a big way by adding this year's No. 2 overall pick into the mix, and their rumored free-agent targets make sense as veteran counterbalances. Golden State has been linked to point guard Jeremy Lin, center Dwight Howard and power forward Paul Millsap. Lin -- a 32-year-old who has played in 480 NBA games -- is the least experienced of the bunch, and he would've been the Warriors' most experienced veteran behind Curry, Thompson and Green last season.
For the most part, the Warriors' offseason boils down to supplementing those three players, from drafting a prospect who ideally would take their place as the franchise's focal point to signing the "older voices" Myers mentioned.
That approach relies upon having a core you can count on, which Myers knows the Warriors have. Curry, Thompson and Green have the rings to prove it.
"I believe you can bet on our guys," Myers said. "They've proven it. It's not an unknown. They've done it before, so you'd like to believe it can happen again. And I'm excited to see it just as a fan of basketball. I want to see what it is as much as anybody."