A max extension for Green would be for four years and $138.4 million.
It would involve opting out of the final year of his deal, meaning Green would be locked in for five years, $164.2 million.
Including this coming season, such a deal would lock in Green for $164.2 million over five years.
— The Athletic NBA (@TheAthleticNBA) July 27, 2022
Naturally, the report sparked debate across the media about whether Green was worth that type of extension.
Performance, age, and recent availability will all play a part in the debate.
But other relationships and team financial decisions will make this question tougher to answer.
They will have key young players available for extensions around the same time.
The Warriors’ already large payroll could balloon even further.
Golden State will need to think long and hard about the extension Green desires.
Warriors’ Financial Situation
Money is one of the main factors complicating Green’s extension.
The Athletic’s report from late July gives a detailed breakdown of the cap implications, but here are the main points:
- The Warriors paid $362 million in luxury tax penalties last year.
- Extending the above four players would leave Golden State with a luxury tax bill of $564 million.
- Joe Lacob has gone on record saying $400 million in luxury taxes was too steep.
That is the cost of winning in the modern NBA.
Thompson and Green have been integral parts of the recent Warriors’ dynasty.
Wiggins was a key piece of last season’s title team.
Poole was as well and appears poised to take the next step into stardom at the age of 23.
It is simply not financially feasible to pay all four players what they feel they deserve and fill out the rest of the roster.
Green’s recent performance, which will be discussed next, could leave him as the odd man out.
Green’s Recent Decline
Outside of the financials, there is also the matter of Green’s recent slippage due to injuries.
Green played in at least 70 games through the first six seasons of his career.
If he did miss time, it was typically rest-related instead of injury-related.
Starting in 2018, that started to change.
He missed 16 games that year mostly due to a sprained toe.
In 2019, he missed 29 games from a variety of minor injuries.
That was followed by a relatively healthy 2020-21 season where he only missed 9 games.
But then he missed 36 games this past season due to a hip injury.
All told, Green has appeared in 218 of a possible 308 games.
In those 218 games, he has averaged 7.4 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 7.3 assists per game on 45% shooting and 28% from three.
Those numbers are down from the previous four seasons when Green was the full-time starter.
Across 306 of a possible 328 games, he averaged 11.8 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game on 45% shooting and 33% from three.
Injuries and father time had seemingly caught up to Green as he is no longer the All-NBA caliber player he once was.
However, Green was selected to the All-Defensive Second Team this year and was critical to the Warriors’ title run.
Draymond is no longer the player he used to be, but he still is a player who affects the game.
Green’s History With Warriors
Finally, there is the matter of Green’s history and relationship with the Warriors.
Without Green, there may not be a Golden State dynasty.
He brought the fire and energy come playoff time and was the foundation of their small ball “death lineup”.
And while Durant, Thompson, and Steph Curry power the offense, Green was the lynchpin holding it all together.
There is also the matter of Curry.
Stephen Curry is keeping his eye on the Warriors' willingness to sign Draymond Green to a contract extensionhttps://t.co/uNIO20xC3t
— Warriors Nation (@WarriorNationCP) July 27, 2022
As Anthony Slater and Marcus Thompson II stated in their report for The Athletic, Curry “sees the Big Three as a package deal.”
Multiple sources have reported that Curry would not be happy if Green walked because Golden State refused to pay him.
With Curry under contract for the next four years, would the Warriors be willing to risk upsetting their franchise cornerstone?
As good as the Warriors’ young core is, they are not guaranteed to win anything.
Titles are everything in the NBA and Golden State’s Big Three proved they are still title-worthy when healthy.
Green may be over the hill, but to keep Curry and Thompson happy, the Warriors should give him the money he feels he deserves.