Analyst's contract take suggests Warriors roster is fatally constructed

Atlanta Hawks v Golden State Warriors
Atlanta Hawks v Golden State Warriors / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages

With the highest payroll in the league and yet no bona fide second star to support Stephen Curry, the Golden State Warriors find themselves in quite the predicament this offseason.

Much of the discussion now surrounds potential trades to get said second star in the coming months, but perhaps just as much focus should be on just how poor a position the Warriors have got themselves in.

Bill Simmons' view on NBA contracts suggests the Golden State Warriors roster is horribly constructed with little wiggle room

Ranking at the top of the league in roster spending should guarantee ownership some level of playoff action, yet instead Golden State stumbled out of the blocks and couldn't recover in time to avoid Play-In Tournament elimination.

So, why did Joe Lacob's spending fail to translate into on-court success this season? It has much to do with the individual contract vs. production contrast in which they failed to yield any real value. While rookies Brandin Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis far outplayed their contracts, Golden State's veterans held them back from any meaningful prosperity.

In the latest episode of his podcast, The Ringer's Bill Simmons delivered an interesting perspective on contracts and how a team can "get absolutely murdered" by a particular type of deal.

"If you're paying non All-Stars over $20 million, I think that's a recipe for just sucking. That's the surest thing we know about the NBA in the last 20 years -- is that specific salary range where it's not quite franchise player money but it's that level below, that's where you get absolutely murdered."

Bill Simmons

Simmons may have said this in relation to an extension for Brooklyn Nets free agent Nic Claxton this offseason, but it nevertheless paints an honest and scary picture of where the Warriors issues lie now and moving forward.

Golden State spent $120 million on four players this season -- three of them (Klay Thompson, Chris Paul and Andrew Wiggins) each had their worst year of the past decade, and a fourth in Draymond Green got himself suspended twice resulting in needlessly missing 21 games. Four players who each made over $20 million, yet were no where near All-Star status...not a great recipe as Simmons points out.

Green and Wiggins are each under contract for at least $24 million annually over the next three seasons, with neither expected to be All-Stars again barring a significant turnaround. The Warriors can move on from Thompson and Paul in the coming weeks, though it will likely take upwards of $20 million per year to re-sign the former in free agency.

Not that this is any kind of fresh, sudden take on the Warriors' struggles, but it is a perfect illustration of their roster issues. It also reiterates the need to bring in a second legitimate All-Star, likely by combining Wiggins and/or Paul's contract with young pieces and future draft assets.