July 22, 2024

Warriors Trade Proposal Would Send Veteran Worth $22.5 Million to….

After failing to make the playoffs, the Golden State Warriors could have big changes on the horizon. In a proposed trade to shake things up from Grant Hughes of Bleacher Report, the Warriors would send Kevon Looney to the Memphis Grizzlies for Ziaire Williams and a 2024 second-round pick via the Oklahoma City Thunder.

“Looney’s sage presence is of immense value to the Golden State Warriors’ locker room, but the 2023-24 season suggested the three-time champ’s days of making a major impact on the floor could be over. That might not be the case on another team, though.

“The Grizzlies have a power forward in Jaren Jackson Jr. whose game includes much more perimeter shooting than the Warriors’ Draymond Green, so it’s possible Looney would be a cleaner fit on offense,” Hughes wrote in an April 27 column exploring trade ideas for every team that missed the playoffs. “The real benefit would come on the boards, where Jackson Jr. isn’t stout enough to keep opposing 5s off the glass. Even in a down year, Looney was stellar in that area, ranking in the 87th percentile among bigs in offensive rebound rate and the 81st in defensive rebounding rate.”

Kevon Looney Saw a Decreased Role

Looney, who will play in the final season of his three-year, $22.5 million contract in the 2024-25 season, played the fewest minutes in a season since 2019-2020.

The Milwaukee native played just 16.1 minutes per game, averaging 4.5 points, and 5.7 rebounds. Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr spoke on the “Willard & Dibs” show about his diminished role during the season.

“I don’t think Loon has a bigger fan than me,” Kerr said on January 31. “So this has been a hard thing for me to go away from… He’s my guy and doesn’t mean he’s not going to make an impact. I still think he will, but you know, things have turned away from him for the time being.”

During the last 10 games of the season, Looney played more than 20 minutes just once.

How Ziaire Williams Would Help the Warriors

Williams, the former No. 10 pick in the 201 NBA draft, would give the Golden State Warriors another young player they can continue to build with.

In his three-year NBA career, Williams has averaged 7.5 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 1.2 assists in 19.6 minutes. During the 2023-24 season, he averaged the most points in his career with 8.2 per game. Williams also had career highs with 3.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game.

Despite averaging career highs, his efficiency was an issue as the 22-year-old shot just 39.7% from the field and 30.7% from three-point range.

Hughes wrote that the Warriors need a younger player instead of “aging backups like Looney.”

“Ziaire Williams was once a future-breakout darling with the Grizz, but the emergence of GG Jackson Jr. makes him expendable ahead of restricted free agency in 2025,” Hughes wrote. “It’s harder to imagine him becoming a high-end starter down the road now than it was a couple of years ago, but the Warriors need lottery tickets like Williams more than they need aging backups like Looney.”

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