Warriors May Look to Move Oft-injured Bogut to Clear Salary to Sign Durant
Warriors starting center Andrew Bogut correctly predicted that he would face criticism after the team fell short of the NBA championship.
“My teammates know what I bring, I’m not too worried about all the extra stuff or what is being said or will be said,” he wrote last week in a column for NBA Australia.
But the Warriors have grown frustrated with Bogut’s unreliability not only because of his injuries, but also his unwillingness at times to engage himself in the offense, according to a CSN Bay Area report.
With the 31-year-old Bogut making $11 million entering the final year of his contract, the Warriors could trade the 7-footer to clear salary in order to sign free agent Kevin Durant or other free agents.
Bogut since being traded to the Warriors in 2012 became a much-needed rim protector, and while playing for coach Steve Kerr, his passing and screen-setting have helped the Warriors becoming a top offensive team.
But injuries left him sidelined for playoff series losses in two of the past three seasons. In 2015, the Warriors won the championship with him not playing in the final two games while Kerr went to a small-ball lineup.
Bogut this season averaged career lows of 5.4 points in 20.7 minutes, and his seven rebounds per game were the lowest since his rookie season. He could be seen taking himself out of the action at times.
“I may not have been playing huge minutes, but I know that I was contributing in lots of other ways,” Bogut wrote after missing the Warriors’ Game 6 and 7 losses because of bone bruises in his left knee.
“Just from watching those last two games, I feel that I could have been out there setting hard screens to get Klay (Thompson) or Steph (Curry) some room early in games. You never know what that could have done.”
Bogut indicated to NBA.com in March he would take less money to get a multiyear extension from the Warriors, but the team could clear the roster of its centers.
Festus Ezeli is a restricted free agent, and the Warriors could part ways with him and Bogut if they sign Durant after a scheduled meeting with the former MVP on Friday in New York.
The Warriors used their first-round draft pick on 7-footer Damian Jones out of Vanderbilt. They are reportedly interested in free agent center Timofey Mozgov.
The Warriors could soon reach agreement with Mike Brown on a contract to make him the team’s top assistant coach.
“Working on the deal right now,” Brown’s agent, Warren LeGarie, wrote in a text message Thursday.
Could Brown’s addition come with a familiar face joining the Warriors’ staff?
Stephen Jackson, who played four seasons with the Warriors, is someone the team has shown interest in for a coaching role, according to ESPN.com ’s Marc Stein.
Brown served as an assistant coach at San Antonio and Indiana while Jackson was a player. Jackson played for the Spurs with Kerr as his teammate.
“Him and Mike Brown are those guys that those guys always tell me, ‘Jack, you’re my guy, you’re my guy,’ ” Jackson told Bleacher Report Radio. “So those guys I learn from, and I wish I could go to war with them every day because they always had my back.”
Jackson, 38, said he had “a really good feeling” he would be coaching job in the NBA or would attempt a comeback in his playing career. For more on the Warriors, see the Inside the Warriors blog at www.ibabuzz.com/warriors . Follow Diamond Leung on Twitter at twitter.com/diamond83 .