Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Baron departs for LA Clippers
Sometimes even the future with youngsters can be bright. On Monday Baron offially set himself loose from the deal offered by Golden State which was $18 million yearly. Then he had the nerve to tell Adande an ESPN.com writer he received a good offer from the Clippers but would perfer to remain a Warrior. The very next day he was officially a Los Angeles Clipper. You can't dispute Barons impact on the team. He took them from the very bad times to the very good times and then said farewell by leaving us in between with a uncertain future.
It became clear as last year that Davis wanted to leave or going by the volatile nature of the charecter, injury prone and clever negotiating tactics that didn't seem to suit Mullin at all that it was always going to be hard for the Warriors to give him a long term deal. The signs were immediately there from the start. Obviously the Warriors depending on whether they pursue Arenas will be worse off for the 08-09 season 32 wins is the max I give them.
But even so this benefits the Warriors youngsters in the long term. As i said before in the last post seeing another high lottery team will be difficult to muster but unlike with Barons pressence a lot of youngsters ala Brandon Wright, Randolph and even Hendrix can even take leadership roles. Should they wish to be a Playoff contender it is essential they take the role of leaders. From a record standpoint, another trip to the lottery next year certainly won’t hurt the Warriors talent pool. I’m sure that mindset will quickly be dismissed once again as brain-dead Warriors losering by many, but if you’re not going to make the playoffs (which I highly doubt the Warriors will next year), you might as well work on the future and let the picks fall where they may. Nelson is well known for his tanking ability so I have faith in his hopes of getting Ricky Rubio
Financially there's no doubt we're better off more flexibility under the cap. It also makes for a distraction free offseason. Assuming Biedrins and Monta are locked up Wright, Belinelli, Randolph, and Hendrix will be sitting snuggly in the middle of their rookie deals the Warriors can now hopefully turn their attention to landing the difference maker player they’ll need with the huge chunk of cap space they’ll have at their disposal. They won't set the world on fire next year but without Baron there isn't any choice.
So without Boom Dizzle the question where is Golden State now. In short, the future, a year early. Baron’s departure shouldn’t taint what he did for this team in 06-07. But that past performance also shouldn’t lead us to believe we have no future without him. It’s not just the off-season that is now wide-open, but the character and performance of this entire team next year. For those who watched the team lose steam last spring with a sense of creeping dread, Davis’ departure provides a clean break from the past. Now, just remember to remind me of all this optimism next year when we lose to not one, but both Los Angeles teams.