The defending champions have been dethroned.
The Warriors entered the Western Conference Semifinals as the favorites to come out on top, but LeBron James and Anthony Davis powered the Lakers to a series win. It marks the first time since 2014 that Golden State has not made it to the Finals when qualifying for the playoffs.
What's next for the franchise? A crucial offseason that could change the Warriors as we know them.
MORE: Full list of players for All-NBA First, Second and Third Teams
Key storyline: Draymond Green's free agency
All eyes will be on Green during the offseason.
While Green has one more year remaining on his contract, it's a player option worth $27.6 million. If he decides to not pick it up, he will enter unrestricted free agency, giving him the choice of signing with any team in the league.
Green might be past his prime, but he's still one of the best bigs in the NBA. He remains one of the league's most versatile and disruptive defenders, and he makes up for his limitations as a shooter with his passing.
There are a number of teams that could use Green's skill set. Early in the 2022-23 season, there were rumors linking him to the Lakers. A native of Michigan, the Pistons are an obvious potential destination for him, and they are one of only a few teams that are projected to have cap space in the offseason. An executive told Heavy's Sean Deveney that Green would "love to play with a superstar like Luka [Doncic]."
If Green were to leave Golden State in free agency, that would leave a massive hole that the Warriors would likely struggle to fill.
“Quite frankly, the writing’s on the wall."— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 14, 2023
Draymond Green on the possibility of not being a Warrior 👀
(via @TaylorRooks) pic.twitter.com/dzIOaq5e2I
The Warriors could re-sign Green, but it would come as a massive financial cost to the franchise. ESPN's Bobby Marks tweeted before the season that Green opting into his contract for 2023-24 would increase the team's salary bill to $215 million and their tax bill to $268 million. Depending on who else they add to their roster, the Warriors could easily exceed $500 million in payroll and tax bills.
That number would probably be much easier to stomach if the Warriors weren't eliminated in the second round.
Warriors upcoming free agents
Andre Iguodala and JaMychal Green will be unrestricted free agents in the 2023 offseason. Anthony Lamb, Ty Jerome and Lester Quinones will join them as restricted free agents, giving the Warriors the option of matching any offer sheet they sign in free agency.
In addition to Green, Donte DiVincenzo has a player option for the 2023-24 season, making him a potential unrestricted free agent.
|Unrestricted||Restricted||Player option||Team option|
|Andre Iguodala||Anthony Lamb||Draymond Green|
|JaMychal Green||Ty Jerome||Donte DiVincenzo|
Warriors future salaries, roster
Stephen Curry, Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins each have several years remaining on their contracts, but Klay Thompson is currently set to be an unrestricted free agent following the 2023-24 season.
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported heading into the 2023 NBA Playoffs that Thompson "has an expectation that he would be rewarded with a new, max-level contract extension this offseason."
|Draymond Green||$27,586,225 (PO)||UFA|
|Andrew Wiggins||$24,330,357||$26,276,786||$28,223,215||$30,169,644 (PO)||UFA|
|Gary Payton II||$8,715,000||$9,130,000 (PO)||UFA|
|Kevon Looney||$8,500,000||$9,000,000 (NG)||UFA|
|Jonathan Kuminga||$6,012,840||$7,636,307 (TO)||RFA|
|Donte DiVincenzo||$4,725,000 (PO)||UFA|
|Moses Moody||$3,918,480||$5,803,269 (TO)||RFA|
|Patrick Baldwin Jr.||$2,337,720||$2,448,840 (TO)||$4,420,156 (TO)||RFA|
|Ryan Rollins||$1,719,864||$2,019,699 (NG)||RFA|
PO = Player option
TO = Team option
NG = Non-guaranteed
UFA = Unrestricted free agent
RFA = Restricted free agent
Warriors 2023 NBA Draft picks
The Warriors own the No. 19 pick in the 2023 NBA Draft.
In his most recent mock draft, TSN's Kyle Irving had the Warriors selecting Colby Jones out of Xavier with their first-round pick.
"Jones is a jack-of-all-trades on both ends of the floor, doing whatever it takes to help his team win games," Irving wrote. "He would thrive in Golden State's development system as a plug-and-play rotation player to add some young depth to an older core."
Golden State's second-round pick is going to Cleveland via Utah and New Orleans.