If Andre Iguodala left the Golden State Warriors, their top options to replace him were free agent forwards Rudy Gay and Gerald Henderson, according to ESPN’s Chris Haynes.
This news corroborates reports from his colleague Adrian Wojnarowski, who said something similar on SportsCenter when free agency began.
Here is the rest of what Haynes wrote about Iguodala, who we learned had seriously considered leaving the defending champions (via ESPN):
“The Warriors had been in the dark for a day and a half and contacted representatives of free-agent small forwards Rudy Gay and Gerald Henderson as a contingency plan. But [Bob] Myers immediately hopped on a plane from the Bay Area and [Steve] Kerr was already in Los Angeles, having recently visited with free agent Nick Young. They didn’t know it, but Iguodala’s objective in sitting down with them was to personally say goodbye, sources with knowledge of the situation told ESPN.”
Gay eventually signed with the Spurs on a two-year deal worth $17.2 million. He has a player option for the final year of his contract. This is about half the price Iguodala signed for considering he will make $16 million per season.
It’s unclear if he would have accepted the same offer from Golden State or if he would have taken less than his $8.6 million average annual earnings. But regardless, it would have been fascinating to watch him play for the Warriors.
If he had not signed, the team also considered Henderson. We have since learned that Henderson will likely not play next season due to his hip injury.
Iguodala has significant value for the Warriors so it would have been a major blow if he signed elsewhere during the offseason. For comparison, his real plus-minus was +3.53 while Gay’s was +1.75 last season.
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