First came the news that a very unhappy Don Nelson headed back to his home in Hawaii after contract negotiations went absolutely nowhere:
Nelson would like to put pressure on the Warriors to move off their one and only offer. That proposal would increase Nelson’s base salary per season from $3.1 million to $5.1 million, but it inserts a team option for the second and final season, meaning Nelson would face a decrease of $1.1 million in guaranteed money.
Then Sarunas Jasikevicius had this to say about his employers:
“I’m really waiting for [Golden State] to trade me. It’s been going on since February, and nothing’s happening. I really don’t understand this franchise, to be honest with you. I know what kind of offers they got for me, and they’re not taking them. I know they’re not planning on using me, so I really don’t understand what they’re trying to do with me. In that league, absolutely nothing depends on me, so I’m sitting by the phone and waiting.”
We agree with Sarunas: the kid can obviously ball (he’s leading the Euro tourney in assists), he’s a star in international ball, has value around the league and doesn’t fit in the Warriors’ system. He’s not going to play here and has a hefty salary, but the front office won’t deal him?
All this comes on the heels of an offseason that also saw Mully and Co. basically risk pissing off Baron (aka their star/meal-ticket) by denying him an extension, fail to acquire a real backup point guard, get nowhere on contract talks with Monta Ellis and/or Andris Biedrins and finally, give up their leading scorer for Brandan Wright. Individually, all these moves (and non-moves) have understandable–even admirable–rationale, but taken as a whole, things could very well implode in the next couple months.
What happens if Nelson walks away? What happens if Baron sulks and/or gets injured? What happens if Monta and Andris become free agents? What happens if Wright is a flop and J-Rich soars in Charlotte?
Are any of these scenarios that implausible? Not really … the W’s are just rolling the dice.