“They still like Tyson Chandler,” Smith said on ESPN 98.7 FM Wednesday.
The Warriors heavily pursued Chandler as a free agent in 2011, but the big man ultimately settled on a four-year, $58 million contract from the Knicks. From Smith’s vantage point, the Warriors still like Chandler enough they might be willing to part with both David Lee and Harrison Barnes to bring him on board.
“I believe there’s a possibility that the Golden State Warriors would trade those two guys for Tyson Chandler,” he said. “I’m not saying it’s definite but I really believe in my heart they would do it.”
This potential deal doesn’t make a lot of sense on a number of different levels, starting with the way Smith presented the story.
His heart might tell him the Warriors would consider it, but his heart doesn’t dictate the actions of Golden State’s front office. Has he heard this is something the Warriors are mulling, or is this just a hunch that they’d consider doing so?
From Golden State’s perspective, there seems to be little, if any, motivation to consider this move.
Yes, the Warriors could use some more depth behind oft-injured big man Andrew Bogut. But is Chandler, who’s missed 43 games over the past two seasons, really a viable insurance plan?
Besides, the Warriors could improve their frontcourt depth without looking outside the organization.
Festus Ezeli, who missed all of the 2013-14 campaign recovering from knee surgery, is expected to take part in the Las Vegas Summer League, according to Diamond Leung of the Bay Area News Group. Ognjen Kuzmic, a 7’1″ center who saw limited action as a rookie, was one of the players Warriors general manager Bob Myers told reporters the team would “like to see get more time.”
Chandler would obviously be an upgrade over Ezeli and Kuzmic, but he would not be a big enough one to justify the massive price the Warriors would have to pay to acquire him.
Not with Lee (definitely) and Barnes (possibly) playing a role in Golden State’s attempt to land Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star forward Kevin Love. While sources told Ramona Shelburne and Marc Stein of ESPN.com that those talks have cooled due to an “organizational split” on the inclusion of shooting guard Klay Thompson, the Dubs could still decide to attempt to revive them.
The Warriors, according to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times, have also reportedly had discussions about sending Thompson to the Los Angeles Lakers for the No. 7 pick in Thursday’s draft. That deal, Bresnahan explained, “would be part of a larger three-way trade” bringing Love to the Bay.
The Dubs appear to have their trade eggs in a number of baskets. As Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group explained, though, this rumored deal for Chandler should not be one of them:
This would be an excellent trade — if Warriors general manager Bob Myers sees the end of his tenure under Joe Lacob coming and wants to start preparing for his next move. …
Outside of helping Myers buddy up to Phil Jackson, this deal does nothing for the Warriors. In the short term and likely not in the long term.
For the record, a precursory look into this with my sources revealed this won’t happen.
In a vacuum, freeing up that type of space makes sense so the Warriors could have the funds needed to land an impact player. Only, Golden State might have the opportunity to land an impact player now in Love, and dealing for Chandler would essentially take that trade off the board.
The Warriors seem intent on making some type of substantial splash this summer. While some of these trade winds might become something greater, this rumor involving Chandler feels like nothing more than a light breeze that could dissipate soon.
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