Steve Kerr hints at major roster changes coming for the Golden State Warriors

Golden State Warriors v Sacramento Kings - Play-In Tournament
Golden State Warriors v Sacramento Kings - Play-In Tournament / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages

Head coach Steve Kerr has suggested there's change coming at the Golden State Warriors after the franchise's disastrous Play-In Tournament elimination against the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday.

After a strong second-half of the season that saw them go 27-12 over the final 39 games, the Warriors met a brutal end at the hands of a pacific rival that had entered with both form and health concerns.

Steve Kerr has predicted a 'different' offseason ahead for the Golden State Warriors with plenty of questions to be answered

With Kerr and the legendary trio of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, Golden State have had a level of continuity that's been unrivalled over the last decade. However, that stability may be coming to an end with Kerr stating, "it's the first time I've really felt like there needs to be some change" during an interview with 95.7 The Game's Willard and Dibs on Wednesday.

What does that change look like? Klay Thompson's free agency will clearly be the biggest talking point, but that's just one piece in a much larger dicussion surrounding the league's highest payroll.

The reality is that the Warriors just spent over $206 million in salaries for the tenth-seed, not to mention the exorbitant luxury tax that accompanies it. According to Kerr, that's a situation that can't continue moving forward.

"I don't think it makes sense to have a massive payroll right now with our team...At some point, you can't spend this much money for a team that didn't make the playoffs. We have a lot of decisions to make and a lot of questions to answer."

Steve Kerr

Fortunately for ownership headed by Joe Lacob, there's a legitimate path to significantly reducing the payroll. Even if they bring back Thompson in free agency, it will likely be for almost half of the $43.2 million he made this season.

Chris Paul has a $30 million completely non-guaranteed deal for next season, offering an obvious way to reduce the payroll by departing with the 38-year-old. Even Kevon Looney's $8 million contract is only partially guaranteed, providing another route to shaving some money.

Kerr's acknowledgement that change is required is quite a philosophical shift, particularly given he himself spent a large part of the season maintaining faith and trust in his veteran players to rediscover their best.