5 Contracts Golden State Warriors must shed during the offseason

These Warriors may be looking for a new home this summer.

Golden State Warriors, Chris Paul
Golden State Warriors, Chris Paul / Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
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4. Gary Payton II

Payton II spent years trying to scratch his way into an NBA rotation. He finally found a consistent role in Golden State and helped them win a championship in 2022. The Mitten parlayed that into a three-year $26.1 million contract with the Blazers. Golden State decided against matching but traded for him before the 2023 deadline.

He has struggled to stay healthy, which likely means he will accept his $9.1 million player option for the 2024-25 season. Payton II has never played more than 17.6 minutes per game and has appeared in more than 29 contests just once. The 31-year-old is in his eighth NBA season.

The Warriors cannot count on him to stay healthy or play a massive role when he is. $9.1 million is below the non-taxpayer mid-level exception but is significantly above a minimum contract. Golden State could save a ton of money by clearing his deal off their books.

If they can dump Looney and Payton II, that is over $17 million off their salary cap sheet, and the Dubs would only have to replace roughly 25 minutes per game.

Finding a taker for Gary Payton’s contract won’t be easy, especially with multiple teams facing financial crunches, but it should not stop Golden State from trying. They need to shed his contract if they plan on getting under the first tax apron and having a contending roster around Stephen Curry.