The Golden State Warriors appear to be ready to wait until next summer to worry about what happens with their restricted free agents. According to separate reports they’ve reached an agreement with Harrison Barnes until next summer and they have yet to begin talks with Festus Ezeli.
Ethan Strauss of ESPN.com reported via Twitter, “Bob Myers says Harrison Barnes and the front office will not reach an extension agreement before the deadline.” He added “Myers says that Barnes wanted a resolution to the situation before the deadline.”
So this scuttles any notion that this is the type of situation that exists in Detroit with Andre Drummond and the Pistons, where the player is a willing participant in the delay to help the team land a better free agent next summer. Willing or no, though, that doesn’t mean that it’s not in the Warriors best interest to do so. The Warriors had previously offered Barnes a four-year, $64 million deal which he rejected.
Additionally, Marc Spears of Yahoo is reporting, “Warriors have not had contract extension talks with C Festus Ezeli and he is expected to be a restricted free agent next summer, source said.”
Nate Duncan of Nylon Calculus writes why these decisions are in both parties interest, first pointing out the player’s perspective:
On the players’ side, they know that over half the league will be able to create cap space up to the applicable $21 million maximum salary for players with zero to six years of experience.
And then the team’s.
On the team side, most plan to use cap space to sign free agents. The best way to maximize space is by keeping a free agent’s cap hold—in nearly all of these cases a lower amount than their projected salary the following year—on the books before re-signing the player instead of extending them now, which would eat into summer 2016 space.
Ergo, expect many more of these reports.