In just over one week’s time, CBA rules dictate that the Golden State Warriors will have to add a player to their vacant 14th roster spot. NBA teams must not have less than 14 fully contracted players for any more than 28 total days during the regular season, and for no more than 14 straight days.
Either way, a decision is looming. When the Warriors waived veterans Rudy Gay and Rodney McGruder after their final preseason outing, they did so to maintain flexibility in surveying the league for possible options.
The Golden State Warriors may have to recall veterans Rudy Gay or Rodney McGruder to fill their 14th roster spot.
No prominent options have necessarily emerged over the last 10 days or so. Former Oklahoma City Thunder big Jeremiah Robinson-Earl may be intriguing for a lot of teams after being waived by the Houston Rockets, but Golden State is an unlikely destination given the presence of Trayce Jackson-Davis and Usman Garuba.
Whomever it is, the Warriors will want to prioritize a veteran player. Their impressive 3-1 start to the season, including three-straight wins on the road, has fans optimistic about a return to genuine championship contention.
Golden State’s best option may be to simply recall either Gay or McGruder, two players they evidently held interest in given they brought them in over the offseason and training camp. The 37-year-old Gay was viewed as a likely acquisition for the 14th roster spot, but played less than 15 minutes through the Warriors first two preseason games and none thereafter.
McGruder’s chances were limited by entering concussion protocols early in preseason, before returning for the final game against the San Antonio Spurs where he recorded eight points and five rebounds on 3-9 shooting in just over 20 minutes.
The top five current free agent options according to HoopsHype include Kevin Porter Jr. (though his career is likely over due to off-court issues), Terrence Ross, Jaylen Nowell, Wenyen Gabriel and former Warrior JaMychal Green.
Given the health and general availability of the entire roster right now, the Warriors would probably prefer to not have to make a decision. That makes a 10-day contract an enticing option, yet that player likely wouldn’t play at all and it would simply kick the can down the road a little while longer.