In the weird, seller’s market of the 2013 offseason, there are assets to be gained just by hanging around, and watching as other teams scramble to go after their Next Big Move. The Utah Jazz hit one out of the park on Friday, digging in for a “sure, we’ll help you”-move with the Golden State as a way to help the Warriors agree to a deal with free agent Andre Iguodala.
The Jazz will receive Golden State’s 2014 and 2017 first round draft picks, along with Richard Jefferson, Andris Biedrins, and Brandon Rush from the Warriors. Utah just sends back the rights to draft pick Kevin Murphy, while also getting “multiple second round picks,” as reported by Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski. This movement allowed the Warriors the cap space to sign Iguodala at four years and $48 million, according to Woj.
It’s true that Biedrins has been a disappointment and Jefferson’s career has wound down recently, but Jefferson can at least contribute spot minutes, and perhaps Biedrins can put it together away from the withering glare of Warriors fans that know better. Meanwhile, Rush is a fine swingman that should recover well from an ACL tear, and all three are free agents in 2014. The Warriors just scored some production and several incoming draft picks just for paying Golden State’s guys for 12 months. Not bad.
As for Golden State? This feels like one of those, “hey, it’s not our money, go ahead” sort of transactions. The team loves going small, and Iguodala can ably play three positions while acting as a defensive key for a team that improved only to the middle of the pack on that end of the season in 2012-13. It’s unclear if those move sends second year swingman Harrison Barnes to the bench, or if the Warriors will go ultra-small with Iguodala up front. The team will be paying Dre through his prime, as well, and this fit seems like a marked improvement than the one Iguodala would have taken to in Sacramento.
The Kings famously pulled their contract offer to Andre on Tuesday, but in the end this was probably what was best for all involved. Facing a rebuilding club in Sacramento, and a weird reshuffling in Denver, Iguodala now gets to adhere to the prospects of a winning team in Golden State. And, happily, the Warriors didn’t have to jettison Andrew Bogut in order to clear space for Iguodala. They would have regretted it, despite Bogut’s longtime injury woes.
The picks Golden State sends Utah’s way probably won’t be regretted much either, as the Warriors are hoping to make deep runs into the playoffs that would send those picks into the 20s. They’re picks, though, all for the price of Utah paying off some expiring contracts.
There will be more of these deals, as teams buttress their own rebuilding projects off of assets that teams finishing a rebuilding process are willing to auction off. Keep the lines open.
Related coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
• Kings hope to build around DeMarcus Cousins
• Slideshow: NBA free-agency tracker
• Rockets GM's daughter makes pitch for Dwight Howard
• Bobcats set to waive Tyrus Thomas