3 Proposed Gary Payton II Trades for the Golden State Warriors to Consider

Golden State Warriors v Boston Celtics
Golden State Warriors v Boston Celtics / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages
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3. Warriors trade for a second star

While Finney-Smith and particularly Caruso would be upgrades from Payton, this third deal nets the Warriors a significant difference-maker in the form of a second star to help catapult them back up the Western Conference. Here's what it looks like:

GPII Lauri

This is essentially the same deal proposed by Bleacher Report's Zach Buckley on Wednesday, with Payton replacing Moses Moody in the package -- they'd both be the fifth asset in the trade so the value is similar enough.

On the surface this is a huge offer to present -- Golden State would be giving up their two best young players, along with two incredibly valuable future picks that fall when Stephen Curry is 38 and then 40-years-old. Yet it's also the sort of offer they'd have to give up to have any chance of enticing the Utah Jazz into dealing their best player.

Lauri Markkanen has long been viewed as the Warriors ideal trade target thanks to his combination of age and contract, alongside his projected seamless fit as a floor-spacing seven-footer who's offensive skillset could complement the defensive excellence of Draymond Green in the front court.

The 2023 All-Star could quickly come in as a second offensive star, and at 27 he's young enough to not only help relieve the burden on Curry going forward, but also lessen the risk of giving up a huge dose of young and future assets.

It's a trade that would help solidify Golden State's rotation, with Curry, Markkanen and Green potentially joined by a re-signed Klay Thompson and Andrew Wiggins in the starting five. They'd also have Trayce Jackson-Davis as a two-way traditional center at their disposal, while perhaps Moody would remain and step into a larger role.

It's a huge price to pay no doubt, but probably one the Warriors need to make if they truly wish to prioritize the remainder of Curry's prime.