Why Warriors might be very active before, after NBA trade deadline

Why Warriors might be very active before, after NBA trade deadline

The Warriors (5-21) lost at home to the lowly Knicks on Wednesday and have the worst record in the NBA.

The 2019-20 season "doesn't matter" in that the Dubs are not going to win the title and they are not going to the playoffs.

But what transpires this year absolutely matters in the long-term. When it comes to player development, the franchise needs to find out what they have and determine who they want to keep moving forward.

Additionally, the organization has the opportunity to avoid the luxury tax for the first time since the 2016-17 season.

To recap -- Golden State paid the tax in 2015-16, 2017-18 and 2018-19. When you do that three times in a four-year span, you then have to pay "repeater tax" penalties if you make it four times in five years. (Basically, the organization would write an even bigger check to the league.)

But if the Warriors find a way to duck below it by July 1, they also would automatically avoid being a "repeater tax" team in 2020-21 -- which would save Joe Lacob, Peter Guber and the rest of ownership a lot of dough.

How much exactly? Well, as John Hollinger of The Athletic writes:

While the Warriors have cash pouring in from the brand new Chase Center, people who are making money still like to make more money.

If they use the Iguodala exception and their taxpayer mid-level exception, and add a first-round pick near the top of the draft, Golden State’s payroll next season could reach $175 million or more, which would trigger a gigantic $108 million luxury tax bill. The repeater would add $34 million on top of that.

Lacob has proven to be somebody who is more than willing to pay whatever is necessary to compete for a championship. But the Dubs aren't in that position this season.

So it would make perfect sense if general manager Bob Myers is able to execute some trades before the Feb. 7 deadline that puts the Warriors closer to the tax threshold (they are about $6 million above) or completely under.

As ESPN's Brian Windhorst said on Nov. 4 when discussing veteran players such as Alec Burks, Willie Cauley-Stein and Glenn Robinson III:

"Some of these guys that they've signed, I don't think they really have much use anymore. I think we're gonna see the Warriors make a series of trades. They're all gonna seem minor in the short-term, but I think we're gonna see them be pretty active messing with this roster going forward."

Also keep in mind that if the Warriors stand pat and keep the roster intact, they could make one big trade in late May (after they find out their draft position) or in late June around the NBA draft.

And don't worry -- they aren't going to make any moves that make the roster worse next season just to save money. This franchise wants to win more than anything, and management will be even hungrier after experiencing this dismal season.

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Hollinger sums it up well:

The Warriors have a major financial incentive to get below the tax line because of their likely payroll strategy for next season and the nonexistent stakes remaining in the current one. Keep an eye on them as we get closer to February.

It's going to be fascinating to watch it all unfold.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram

Warriors coach Steve Kerr wishes 49ers well in Super Bowl 54 vs. Chiefs

Warriors coach Steve Kerr wishes 49ers well in Super Bowl 54 vs. Chiefs

Draymond Green might not be rooting for the 49ers in Super Bowl LIV, but one other prominent member of the Warriors’ organization will be.

Coach Steve Kerr delivered a message via social media on Friday, wishing the Niners well as they prepare to take on the Kansas City Chiefs at Hard Rock Stadium on Feb. 2.

"I just wanna say good luck to the 49ers," Kerr said. "Everybody's pulling for you guys, let's go."

[RELATED: How Dubs benefit from Cauley-Stein trade to Mavericks]

Draymond said after shootaround on Friday that he’ll be rooting for the Chiefs, whose roster features his close friend, defensive end Frank Clark.

Both Kerr and Green happen to know a thing or two about winning championships, but only one of them will be happy with the result from Miami.

How Warriors gain flexibility in Willie Cauley-Stein trade to Mavs

How Warriors gain flexibility in Willie Cauley-Stein trade to Mavs

SAN FRANCISCO -- Willie Cauley-Stein walked out of shootaround, down a long corridor that leads to the Warriors' locker room in Chase Center late Friday morning in preparation for a game scheduled hours later against the Indiana Pacers. The trek marked the big man's last as a member of Golden State.

By Saturday morning, Cauley-Stein officially was traded to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for the Utah Jazz's second-round draft pick in 2020, ending his short tenure in the Bay Area. Along the way, the Warriors set themselves up for future flexibility. 

In the immediate aftermath, the Warriors shed Cauley-Stein's current $2.17 million salary and his $2.8 million player option for the 2020-21 season, while freeing up an open roster spot for this season and beyond. From a financial perspective, it sank Golden State $2.57 million below the hard cap, according to ESPN's Bobby Marks. Additionally, the Warriors have enough salary space to convert the two-way deals of either Ky Bowman or Marquese Chriss. 

Six months ago, Cauley-Stein came to Warriors in search of career revitalization. After four years in Sacramento, he demanded that the Kings rescind his qualifying offer to make him a free agent last summer. After garnering more lucrative offers from other teams, he chose to sign a one-year contract with Golden State, which included the player option. With a new contract, the center hoped to keep the Warriors' postseason streak alive while earning a payday next summer. 

However, those wishes didn't come to fruition. A week before training camp, Cauley-Stein sprained his foot, causing the center to miss the first month of the season. His injury, coupled with Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevon Looney missing significant time, led to a lost season for the big man.

Nonetheless, Cauley-Stein expressed a desire to stay with the Warriors long term, citing his relationship with coach Steve Kerr. 

"He wants to build a relationship with you," Cauley-Stein told NBC Sports Bay Area last month. "I think, in the past I hadn't had a relationship with my coach. [Former Kings coach Dave] Joerger, me and him had a pretty good rapport, pretty good, like cordial, but we never had like in-depth conversations about life and stuff like that, and the first couple of conversations I had with coach Kerr was real-life stuff and that hit home with me like, 'Damn, he really tried to get to know me.' "

[RELATED: Draymond not rooting for 49ers]

Unfortunately for Cauley-Stein, he won't get to continue that relationship with Kerr.

Now, with Dallas in need of a center with the loss of Dwight Powell, his hope to find a similar relationship with Rick Carlisle will immediately start in a Mavericks uniform.