In the latest NBA free agency shuffle, the Golden State Warriors have signed center JaVale McGee to a non-guaranteed contract. The contract allows McGee to participate in Golden State’s training camp, in hopes that he will earn a spot on the Warriors roster for the 2016-17 NBA season.
Just recently, the Inquisitr reported on rumors that there was some threat of Stephen Curry leaving the Warriors if things went bad with Kevin Durant. Golden State’s entire off-season has been full of changes after Curry and company became the first team in NBA Finals history to drop a 3-0 lead. The signing of Durant was one move in hopes of taking down LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in next year’s NBA Finals. The Warriors’ interest in McGee is just the latest news related to their attempt to rebuild for the 2016-17 NBA season.
JaVale McGee’s Career
As reported by Today’s Fastbreak, McGee signed with Golden State in hopes of playing his ninth season in the NBA. McGee averaged 5.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game last season, when he played 34 games (and started twice) for the Dallas Mavericks. Those 34 games were more than he played in 2013-14 and 2014-15 combined. McGee’s career began in Washington in the 2008-09 season. He was traded to the Denver Nuggets during the 2011-12 season, and traded from Denver to Philadelphia during the 2014-15 season. Throughout his career, he has averaged 52 games played per season, with 8.2 points, 1.7 blocks and 5.4 rebounds per game.
Golden State Warriors — Where McGee Fits At Center
As noted by Cleveland.com, when the Warriors signed Kevin Durant, they were forced to sacrifice quite a bit at the center position. Of the four centers signed to the Warriors roster when they won a record-breaking 73 regular-season games, three will be playing for a different team next year. Andrew Bogut was traded to the Dallas Mavericks, while Golden State had to let Festus Ezeli and Marreese Speights walk to sign with the Portland Blazers and Los Angeles Clippers, respectively.
That left Golden state with just one center from the 2016 NBA Finals: Anderson Varejao. While they have added Zaza Pachulia from the Mavericks and David West from the Spurs, they could still use another center to help fill their rotation. McGee, a 7-footer, could very well be the fourth and final piece the Warriors need at center.
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Golden State Warriors — 2016-17 NBA Season
After coming up one game shy of winning back-to-back NBA Championships, the Golden State Warriors made some big changes to make sure they could once again dominate the Western Conference in the 2016-17 NBA season, and then proceed to win four games in the NBA Finals against the defending champions, the Cleveland Cavaliers. At this point, it doesn’t appear that the Cavaliers will make any major changes to their squad, with their “Big Three” — LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love — all expected to be happy to return to Cleveland to try to win another ring.
Just like JaVale McGee, center Zaza Pachulia played just the 2015-16 season with the Dallas Mavericks before being picked up by the Golden State Warriors in free agency for the 2016-17 season. Small forward Harrison Barnes and center Andrew Bogut — who both played for the Warriors for the last four seasons — will begin their respective stints with the Mavericks next season. While Barnes was a free agent like McGee and Pachulia, while Bogut was traded to Dallas for a future draft pick.
[Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images]