Wait-and-see: Nic Claxton
While the frontcourt trio of Andrew Wiggins, Jonathan Kuminga and Draymond Green have yielded positive results since the latter's return, Golden State's lack of size has still been exposed at times over recent games.
Kevon Looney has been reduced to nothing more than a bit-part piece in the rotation, and head coach Steve Kerr seemingly refuses to trust Trayce Jackson-Davis despite the rookie's impressive play at times this season.
Golden State needs another alternative, one that Kerr can trust for significant minutes. Green may still be the primary center, yet not all of his minutes should come at the five-spot. The answer -- what about Nic Claxton?
The Warriors got a perfect illustration of the young center's ability when he went for 15 points, five rebounds and an eye-catching seven blocks, before being ejected for a hit on Brandin Podziemski in Golden State's visit to Barclays Center on Monday. Although the Brooklyn Nets value Claxton incredibly highly, his pending free agency makes him a name to monitor over the next 48 hours.
That's what would make Claxton a wait-and-see, rather than necessarily a no-brainer. Giving up anything of significant value would almost force the Warriors into committing long-term money to Claxton in free agency, likely something upward of $80 million over four years.
With the contractual situations of Klay Thompson and Chris Paul up in the air, and potential rookie extensions for Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody, adding Claxton to the mix would further complicate Golden State's free agency plans.
There's also the chance that the Warriors get outbid for Claxton in free agency -- it would be a disaster if he were to leave for nothing just months after the franchise gave up assets for him at the deadline.
If Golden State can get Claxton in a fair-value trade and then re-sign him in on a reasonable deal in free agency, then great. That's a wait-and-see situation though on a player who's far from a star.