From NBA reporting savant Adrian Wojnarowski comes this bombshell about the Warriors shopping David Lee to the Raptors and Blazers:
Golden State offered Lee in a package for Toronto’s Andrea Bargnani, sources said, but the Raptors made a deal with the New York Knicks to shed the final two years, $22.5 million on Bargnani’s contract.
The Warriors tried to pry Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge as part of an offer that included Brandon Rush, league sources said. Portland has been engaging trade talks for Aldridge, but has pursued more robust offers than Golden State’s proposal, sources said.
I’m all for the Warriors upgrading from Lee (who’s 30, by the way) and his ridiculous contract (3 years/$44 million) and his abysmal defense in the blocks. But for Bargnani? No. Nonononononononononononono. No. It’d essentially be downgrading to a lesser-productive, perimeter-oriented, more injury-prone, spiky haired version of David Lee. Thankfully the Knicks exist, and thankfully the Knicks are dumb enough to give up a first-rounder plus pieces for the 7-foot catastrophe.
Aldridge, though? Now that trade would have been nice for the Warriors. With Aldridge, the Warriors would get a better, all-around player, who comes with a cheaper price tag (2 years/$29 million) and is three years younger. Of course the Blazers realize this and are going to play hardball with all inbound offers for Aldridge. So, unless the Warriors sweeten the pot, they’re stuck in a limbo on that front.
Lee is coming off a career year in which he was the Warriors’ only all-star. The Warriors were supposed to collapse on themselves in the playoffs when Lee when down with a torn hip flexor in the first round, but instead they took the eventual Western Conference champs to six games in the second round and arguably looked like a better team without him.
So, what gives? Are the Warriors trying to improve their salary cap picture? Are they (mainly owner Joe Lacob) suddenly no longer swooned by Lee? Nah:
Golden State does value David Lee, had a terrific season for them, but they've simply tested his worth on the market.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 1, 2013
Oh. Yeah, sure, let’s just noisily test the trade waters to see how much market value our second-best player has. No big deal. I’m sure David Lee won’t be mad about this at all.