NBA

Warriors face pressing choices in Jordan Poole, Andrew Wiggins offers

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This offseason, as players take turns bringing the Larry O’Brien Trophy to their hometowns for parades and parties, the Golden State Warriors front office must reckon with a less pleasant reality: the threat of a financial settlement.

Barring massive extensions in the coming months, guard Jordan Poole and forward Andrew Wiggins will become free agents next summer. To bring these two back to their projected market values ​​while paying Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, Klay Thompson and the rest of the players already on their books, the Warriors could face a total payroll of 2023-24 – wages and taxes luxury – north of $500 million.

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Majority owner Joe Lacob sees this as an impossibility. The Warriors handed out an NBA-record payroll of about $362 million last season, and they’re reluctant to cross the $400 million threshold. Although Green and Thompson are eligible for the extension this summer, the Golden State brass know their most critical dilemma comes down to one choice: keep Poole or keep Wiggins?

Before making such a big decision, the Warriors would be wise to see how both players progress over the next 12 months. But right now, given all the information out there, Poole seems like he’s more likely to be the odd one out. The reason is simple: Two-way wings like Wiggins are harder to come by than shoot-first guards like Poole.

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