Although he’s not the flashiest star of his generation’s most successful NBA franchise, it’s impossible to deny the huge role Draymond Green played in transforming the Golden State Warriors into the steamrolling, title-winning, era-defining team that it has become. But will he still be part of the Warriors beyond the 2022-23 NBA season?
Green decided not to pick up his player option for the 2023-24 campaign worth $27.59 million, but most expect him to keep playing for the Warriors on a new contract. The real question is whether he’s still worth the money he apparently believes he deserves, which is at least $100 million.
Over the weekend, Green shared an image via Instagram Story a quote of ESPN personality Stephen A. Smith about the forward being “easily worth $100 million.” Obviously, Green, even at 33 years old, approves of Smith’s opinion, which means he and his agent are not going to be bothered by an offer lower than that figure.
Last season, Green averaged 8.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 6.8 assists per game, while shooting 52.7 percent from the field and leading Golden State in defensive win shares.
At the moment, the Warriors are $16 million over the luxury tax threshold. Golden State wants to minimize tax spending which they can do by deciding against re-signing Green. At the same time, the Warriors know that they aren’t going to be the same, even with still both Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson in the fold, if Green is not on board. The Warriors have no experience winning titles without Green, whose brilliance on the floor and importance to Golden State’s success go beyond just the tangible numbers and basic stats.
This Draymond Green offseason saga for the Warriors is one that could define how the start of this particular era of the franchise’s era concludes.