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Add Golden State to the list of teams that covet Nene

Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets

DENVER - JANUARY 19: Nene #31 of the Denver Nuggets reacts to a play against Nick Collison #4 of the Oklahoma City Thunder on January 19, 2011 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2011 NBAE (Photo by Garrett W. Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Nene;Nick Collison

Garrett Ellwood

Whatever the new Collective Bargaining Agreement looks like, whatever the new pay structure is going to look like, Nene is going to get paid.

He is the best big man on the market. It doesn’t take a genius to look at Dallas and see what a big man who can defend and rebound can do for a team (and Nene can score, too).

Denver wants to keep him and now Golden State has him on top of their summer wish list, according to Tim Kawakami at the San Jose Mercury News.

There are a lot of teams that will test the market for Nene, who said after the season he did not feel appreciated by Denver and would likely test the market (he can opt out of his deal). You can see where he would fit in from New York to Houston to about 20 other teams around the league. There will be offers.

Saying how Golden State could do it is impossible because we don’t know what the new CBA will look like. The Warriors have $49 million in salary committed for next year, but if an amnesty clause allows them to wipe Andris Biedrins off the books they have just $40 million and can bring a free agent in. Or, they can do a sign-and-trade, if there are sign-and-trades allowed. The future is too murky to predict right now.

Still the smart money is on Denver to keep him. The main reason is money — most likely under whatever the new CBA looks like there will still be a mechanism to help teams keep star players by offering more money. In the NBA, money can equal respect and appreciation, and Denver can offer more of it. And after the way the Nuggets seemed to come together after the Carmelo Anthony trade, he may well want to stay. That was a fun team to play for.

Still, add Golden State to what will be a long list.