3 Free Agency mistakes the Golden State Warriors must avoid making

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers - Game Six
Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers - Game Six / Harry How/GettyImages
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2. Discard Kevon Looney for nothing

Before the Warriors face Thompson's impending free agency, the same loyalty and respect elements will be tested when the franchise has to decide whether or not to fully guarantee Kevon Looney's contract for next season.

Just $3 million of the 28-year-old's $8 million deal is guaranteed until June 24, leaving Golden State the option to cut Looney prior to that date and save millions on the combined payroll and luxury tax.

The Athletic's Tim Kawakami even labelled that the "likeliest situation" on the Warriors Plus-Minus podcast earlier in the month, leaving Looney as an unrestricted free agent and free to explore a new destination after nine years with the franchise.

Yet allowing that would be a colossal mistake, and this time it's all about loyalty. Golden State aren't in full control of Thompson's future -- if he leaves it's of his volition, even if that partly stems from a lack of respect shown by the franchise. They do have Looney's fate in their own hands though. Sure, cutting him would make some sense given the financial implications, his form this season, and the emergence of rookie center Trayce Jackson-Davis.

It would be a terrible look that fails to respect Looney's standing as a three-time champion, his leadership and experience in the locker room, and the fact he's often played well above his contract value in recent years.

We're not talking about $20-30 million, we're talking about $8 million. That's a perfectly fair price to pay for a backup center -- it wouldn't suddenly be viewed as some kind of toxic contract. Guaranteeing the contract and then trading Looney would also be brutal, but at least that's a little more dignifying than the Warriors simply cutting him purely for financial reasons.