The Golden State Warriors were quiet for much of Sunday, as Kevin Durant left to go to Brooklyn and they re-signed Klay Thompson as expected to a max deal.
However, as the evening hours rolled on, rumblings of Durant going to Brooklyn actually being a sign-and-trade began to pick up steam and sure enough, it was reported that the Nets would send Golden State D’Angelo Russell on a max contract in exchange for Durant. It was a shocking deal, with plenty of questions about fit, but still rather amazing that the Warriors got something back for Durant.
There were cap hurdles to clear to make the deal happen, including the need to shed a significant contract like Andre Iguodala’s. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported they made that happen with a deal sending Iggy to Memphis, along with a future first round pick.
The biggest asset for Memphis is obviously that future first-rounder, which, depending on what happens with the Warriors in four years could be reasonably valuable — at least moreso than recent Golden State picks. It’ll be interesting to see what happens with Iguodala, whether they buy him out or keep him around for that coveted veteran leadership on an otherwise very young team — that could use someone that could play minutes on the wing.
As Ramona Shelburne notes, Iguodala was a former client of Lakers GM Rob Pelinka, so a reunion could be in the works if he is bought out.
In any case, Golden State ships out a key member of their dynasty era in an effort to prolong their run with Russell, and it’s quite the gamble.