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Warriors hold roster spot, reportedly expect Andre Iguodala to return

2022 NBA Finals - Golden State Warriors v Boston Celtics

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 16: Andre Iguodala #9 of the Golden State Warriors high fives Andrew Wiggins #22 during Game Six of the 2022 NBA Finals on June 16, 2022 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. 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 Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

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The Golden State Warriors have 13 guaranteed contracts on the books with less than one week before training camp opens (the Warriors’ media day is Friday, Sept. 23, starting a few days before the rest of the league because they will face the Wizards in preseason games in Japan).

They are holding a 14th roster spot for Andre Iguodala, who at age 38 has yet to formally say he will return. That said, the Warriors fully expect him to be there, reports Marc Stein in his weekly Sunday Substack letter.

The only certainty regarding Andre Iguodala’s plans for the coming season is that he intends to announce his play-or-retire decision at age 38 on his weekly podcast with Evan Turner. The Warriors, I’m told, do expect Iguodala to play for one more season but are prepared for any outcome and are also open to bringing the 18-year veteran back on his timetable.

Name an 18-year veteran who is excited about the idea of another training camp. They want to return for the games, for the things that matter, for camaraderie, but not so much the training camp part of the experience.

Iguodala will play a limited role for the Warriors, much like last season when he played in 31 games averaging 4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists. He was on the floor in seven Warriors playoff games.

This will be a transition year for the Warriors in the sense they will lean more into their youth — Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody, and maybe James Wiseman — to help get them through the regular season while keeping the minutes down for Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and the other vets. The Warriors, like other contenders, will approach the regular season with the twin goals of making it into the top six (more likely top four) in the West, but keeping their older legs as fresh as possible for the second season that is the long NBA playoffs.

Iguodala’s legs are older, which is why the idea of him missing part of training camp but showing up in time for the start of the season is not out of the question (Warriors GM Bob Myers has hinted at the possibility). The Warriors know what they have with Iguodala, and he knows how to fit in with them. He is plug-and-play. The only question is when he might plug in with the Warriors.

Check out his podcast for the answer.