Draymond Green is undeniably one of the major reasons why the Golden State Warriors won three NBA championship titles in the last four years. His ability to play multiple positions and his impressive performance on both ends of the floor convinced the Warriors to give him a five-year, $82 million deal in 2015. However, not everything is expected to be the same during Green's next free agency.
According to Andrew Sharp of Sports Illustrated, the Warriors will need to make a tough decision on or before July 2020, when Green becomes an unrestricted free agent. Golden State already committed a huge chunk of their salary cap space to Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant. Next summer, the Warriors are expected to do everything to bring Klay Thompson back.
"Draymond's future will be a more complicated discussion. His game is already showing signs of wear and tear after years of playing small-ball five and bouncing around with guys twice his size. He hasn't always taken care of his body off the court. His shooting has declined. Leaving aside the massive luxury-tax implications for the Warriors, any team would think hard before committing $150 million to a player with that profile."Draymond Green's situation in Golden State could be easily fixed if Kevin Durant leaves the Warriors next summer. However, as of now, it's hard to imagine Durant throwing away the opportunity to win more NBA titles with the Warriors to play somewhere else. Green will be 30-years-old when he becomes a UFA, and if he demands more money than he is currently earning, the Warriors may consider letting him walk away in the summer of 2020. However, the Warriors are not foolish enough to let Draymond Green go without getting anything in return. If they are not interested in extending their partnership with Green, the Warriors could explore trading him before he becomes a free agent. Several NBA teams that dream of contending for the NBA championship title will surely express interest in adding him to their team.
Among the potential suitors mentioned by Sharp include the Los Angeles Clippers, Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat, Portland Trail Blazers, and the Los Angeles Lakers. Warriors owner Joe Lacob has talked about ruling the NBA for the next decade, and, as Sharp noted, the "most realistic way" to make it happen is to replace Draymond Green with younger, cheaper and better role players to complement Curry, Durant, and Thompson.