Kyle Anderson, Timberwolves


Kyle Anderson, Timberwolves


Getty

Kyle Anderson of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Golden State Warriors probably have the ammunition to bring in a star player this summer, but one guy won’t carry the Dubs back to legitimate title contention all by himself.

The Warriors have proven themselves masters of understanding the concept of fit, even with regards to the highest level of talent the NBA has to offer. The pairing of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson became the greatest shooting backcourt in league history, and was complemented perfectly by the defensive prowess and court vision of Draymond Green.

Thompson may be on his way out of the Bay Area after 13 years via unrestricted free agency, which will clear salary cap space for Golden State to pursue another elite talent to replace him — Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat being just one potential example. But the player fits around Curry, Green and whoever a third member of a Big 3 might be will prove paramount for an aging roster hoping to compete in a young and brutally loaded Western Conference.

To that end, Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report on Thursday, June 6, pitched Kyle Anderson of the Minnesota Timberwolves as a “sleeper contract” the Dubs should pursue this offseason.


Kyle Anderson’s Versatility Would Help Warriors on Both Ends of Court

Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors

GettyKyle Anderson, formerly of the Memphis Grizzlies, and Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors fight for a loose ball during the Western Conference Finals in 2022.

Anderson will play next season at 31 years old. He is far from a superstar, but has posted solid numbers across the board over his 10-year NBA tenure.

His career totals are 6.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1 steal and 0.6 blocks per game across 21.9 minutes of court time per night, according to Basketball Reference. However, Anderson’s value to the Warriors would be greater than the numbers that show up on traditional stat sheets, as Buckley laid out.

Anderson likely sits on the ambitious edge of Golden State’s budget, but there’s a universe in which he’s open to taking the taxpayer’s mid-level exception. He checks a metric ton of boxes on the basketball court, but he is limited as a scorer and spacer, so maybe that eats into his earnings enough to slot him in the affordable category.

If the Warriors feel there’s even a sliver of hope for having him, then he’s worth an aggressive courtship.

His aforementioned versatility reaches both ends of the court. On offense, he can function as anything from a [6-feet-9] playmaker to a small-ball big. In other words, he could potentially help Golden State replace [Chris] Paul while also adding new twists to this front court. On defense, his length, instincts and awareness help him keep up with assignments of nearly every style. His quick processing skills would make him a fit in this read-and-react system, and he could enhance the offensive menu by handling either side of a pick-and-roll play.


Kyle Anderson Would Have to Agree to Substantial Pay Cut to Join Warriors Next Season

Chicago Bulls

GettyKyle Anderson, formerly of the Memphis Grizzlies.

Anderson just completed the final season of a two-year, $18 million deal in Minnesota and will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Buckley mentioned the taxpayer’s mid-level exception as potential path for the Warriors to land a player like Anderson. According to a Hoops Rumors projection from November 2023 that assumed a league-wide salary cap of $141 million for the 2024-25 season, the taxpayer’s mid-level exception would price in at just shy of $5.2 million.

That represents a significant pay cut for Anderson. However, a reduction in pay tracks as his numbers were down across the board last season, along with his playing time, as Anderson crossed the threshold into his 30s.

Anderson’s availability to Golden State is likely to come down to how much interest there is in him around the NBA this summer, as well as how competitive a roster the Warriors can put on the court after an offseason that appears primed for significant personnel turnover.

Max Dible covers the NFL, NBA and MLB for Heavy.com, with a focus on the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Chicago Bears and Cleveland Browns. He covered local and statewide news as a reporter for West Hawaii Today and served as news director for BigIslandNow.com and Pacific Media Group’s family of Big Island radio stations before joining Heavy. More about Max Dible



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