The Golden State Warriors continue to struggle leading up to February 8 trade deadline, only increasing urgency on the franchise in the hopes of saving their fledgling season.
Monday's 116-107 loss to barely recognizable Memphis Grizzlies was the latest in a series of horrid defeats that has the Warriors at 18-22. Change needs to happen, and yet the franchise may be forced to retain one of their biggest problems.
Andrew Wiggins' four-year, $109 million contract means the Golden State Warriors may need to retain the under-fire forward
Andrew Wiggins has returned to the starting lineup over the last three games, but two outings with at least 16 points is hardly doing enough to change the narrative on the veteran forward.
With the Canadian continuing to play at a career-worst level this season, many expect him to be dealt before the trade deadline, including the Athletic's Tim Kawakami. However, that may be easier said than done with Sam Vecenie, also of The Athletic, outlining Wiggins' contract as a major hindrance.
"I’m not convinced there will be a taker for his contract. Maybe the Warriors can find a trade involving Wiggins and another struggling player on a long-term contract to try to reset their careers. Or, maybe they can move Wiggins along with draft picks as part of a bigger trade for a strong player.- Sam Vecenie
Wiggins has entered the first of a four-year, $109 million contract he signed with the Warriors just prior to last season. Vecenie also went as far to suggest that based on Wiggins' current output, "he might own the worst contract in the NBA moving forward."
The 28-year-old's 11.9 points per game is five points lower than his previous worst season in the NBA. Wiggins is shooting 42.2% from the floor and a career-low 29.6% from three-point range, while he's also averaging career-lows in assists, steals and blocks per game.
Yet despite all the issues, the Warriors may be inclined to keep Wiggins and hope he trends back in a positive direction. Is it really worth trading him for another bad contract, one that would be an even bigger gamble for the franchise?
As Vecenie points out, Golden State's best option might be hoping that Wiggins and other assets can find them a reasonable upgrade. Nevertheless, the fact we've reached this point is a stark indicator of how far Wiggins has fallen.