The Golden State Warriors have been one of the hardest hit franchises of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, with the league seeking to penalize high-spending teams to create greater parity.
The most publicized aspect has been the removal of the taxpayer mid-level exception for those teams at least $17.5 million over the tax threshold. That will reduce the capacity to bring in impactful role players via free agency, like what we’ve seen this season with Donte DiVincenzo his season. However, that’s not the only new rule that will be brought in to impact teams like the Warriors.
The restriction on high-spending teams to send cash in trades will remove the Golden State Warriors ability to acquire second-round draft picks.
With four championships in eight seasons, the Warriors have seldom had access to top draft talent recently outside three lottery picks across 2020 and 2021. To combat that, and to help bring in minimum contract players, Golden State have often sought to acquire young talent by essentially buying second-round picks from opposition teams. Under the new CBA, that will be no longer possible according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The Warriors have bought second-round picks four times in the last seven years, starting with Patrick McCaw in 2016 after he was initially selected 38th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks. McCaw would go on to win an NBA championship in each of his first three seasons, the first two with Golden State and then a third against them with the Toronto Raptors in 2019.
General Manager Bob Myers would then acquire Jordan Bell after he too was taken with the 38th overall pick in 2017. Alen Smailagic was acquired with cash and future draft compensation in 2019, and just last year, the Warriors got Ryan Rollins on draft night from the Atlanta Hawks. Rollins is the only player of the four to be in the NBA currently.
While these draft right acquisitions have produced little impact over the years, you just don’t know who the Warriors may miss out on as a result of this change. Some second-round picks, like Draymond Green, have turned into All-Star level players, and Golden State will now have to find value with their own picks, at least while they remain above the new $17.5 million threshold.