Not many players can spend just two years with one team and be recognized as one of their top ten players in the past twelve years, except if that team is the Golden State Warriors.
The Warriors have never really had that true “superstar” player since Rick Barry in the seventies, but Gilbert Arenas is close as it gets.
Bandwagon fans who became supporters after the “We Believe” team may not remember this, but before he was knocking down clutch shots for the Washington Wizards, “Agent Zero” was a young budding star in the Warriors organization.
Arenas was one of the biggest steals in the 2001 NBA Draft as the 30th overall pick by the Warriors. He became an instant fan-favorite as their starting point guard for much of the season, and logged double-digits with 10.9 points per game.
He really broke out in his second year, scoring 18.3 points a game and winning the NBA’s Most Improved Player Award.
But of course, like all potentially great players had to do, Arenas left the Warriors after just two seasons and signed a six-year, $60 million contract with the Wizards. In the next few years, he would mature into one of the best point guards in the NBA. He peaked in 2005-2006 when he scored 29.3 points per game.
However, the Warriors and their fans can take some consolation in the fact that Arenas’ career derailed in 2010 thanks to the infamous gun incident. He played in just 17 games last season and averaged 4.2 points per game with the Memphis Grizzlies.
What makes it even better is that the Warriors have had two more “franchise” point guards since Arenas’ departure, and they will be chronicled later on in this list.