Bob Myers on Jordan Poole extension: We've kept all the players we want to keep, so I don't see that changing

Bob Myers on Jordan Poole extension: We’ve kept all the players we want to keep, so I don’t see that changing

The Golden State Warriors already have the most expensive roster in NBA history. Spotrac estimates Joe Lacob’s total salary cost at roughly $346 million for the season—just under $176 million in salaries and another $170 million in luxury tax payments—but if the Warriors want to keep this team together, it’s only going to get pricier. Kevon Looney, Otto Porter Jr., Gary Payton II, Nemanja Bjelica and Andre Iguodala will all be free agents this offseason, and while none of the five should command particularly exorbitant deals on their own, star sixth man Jordan Poole absolutely will.

The third-year sensation averaged 25.4 points per game across his final 20 regular-season contests and is averaging over 18 points per game in the postseason despite playing a smaller role with Stephen Curry back and healthy. He is Golden State’s most promising long-term prospect, an enormously explosive attacker who’s as crafty near the basket as he is comfortable firing far away from it. Keeping him is going to require an enormous long-term commitment, but fortunately for Golden State, that appears to be one the Warriors are ready to make.

“I mean, thankfully [I] work for an ownership group in Joe [Lacob] that has committed all kinds of resources to winning,” Warriors general manager Bob Myers told Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports. “And I know that because every time I asked him about roster and strategy, it’s always winning.”

“You don’t need me to tell you what our payroll is. It’s pretty high,” Myers said. “So he just wants to win. And we’ve spent a lot and we’ve kept all the players we want to keep, so I don’t see that changing.”

Right now, the Warriors have four players making more than $20 million in Curry, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins and Draymond Green. In theory, the Warriors could simply allow Poole to fill Wiggins’ salary slot if they are uncomfortable paying five players so much money as Wiggins will be a free agent after next season and Poole’s new contract wouldn’t kick in until the summer of 2023. However, given Golden State’s longstanding desire to continue competing even after Curry, Thompson and Green retire, they will likely try to keep Wiggins as well.

Keeping all five, along with whatever supporting pieces they prioritize, will undoubtedly create a historically expensive roster. The Warriors already have $171 million committed in salary next season, before any of those free agents are re-signed. While the tax threshold will rise every year, Golden State’s status as a repeat offender ensures that it will pay the highest possible tax bill for the players it chooses to keep. If four near-max players have the Warriors at nearly $350 million in salary, could a fifth push them closer to $500 million?

Without knowing Golden State’s plans, it’s impossible to say. Here’s what we know: the Warriors built an absolute cash cow of an arena in the Chase Center. Goodwill’s reporting indicates that some estimate the Warriors will rake in nearly $100 million in playoff revenue alone. In addition, the NBA is coming up on a new media rights deal, and while the exact figure isn’t yet known, reports have indicated that the NBA wants to triple the size of its current national television contract. That would give the Warriors significantly more revenue to devote to player salaries.

The Warriors have already made an unprecedented commitment to paying their players. If they are willing to maintain that commitment, they have a chance to remain atop the NBA for years and years to come.

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