Golden State Warriors Trying to Clear Cap Space to Sign Dwight Howard

by July 05, 2013

Boosted by the positive July 1 meeting with free agent Dwight Howard — who could make his highly-anticipated decision today — the Golden State Warriors are trying to shed contracts to make room on their books to sign the superstar center. The Warriors are reportedly confident they can get rid of three contracts — despite the enormous challenges to do so — even if the Los Angeles Lakers refuse to engage in a sign-and-trade for DH. Per ESPN: “The Lakers have been adamant for weeks they would prefer to let Howard leave for nothing and bank the resultant salary-cap space in the summer of 2014, with many rival executives likewise convinced that L.A. would have real reservations about helping Howard land with a division rival. So sources say that the Warriors, in an effort to manufacture some financial flexibility to help their chances, have begun calling teams with salary-cap space to try to entice them to take expiring contracts off their books so they can clear a $20 million hole for Howard. Such a scenario would be challenging, some executives have said, but not impossible. The Warriors have three huge expiring contracts in Andrew Bogut ($14 million), Richard Jefferson ($11 million) and Andris Biedrins ($9 million). According to sources, they have tried to unload all three players this week to teams with cap room. Yet, Golden State likely would have to be willing to add assets to any potential deals to get teams interested. Sources say the Warriors have been willing to attach a future first-round pick to move one of their bad contracts since last February’s trade deadline, but potential partners tend to ask for prized youngsters such as Harrison Barnes or Klay Thompson — two of the more attractive young players in the league — when the subject of absorbing one of the Warriors’ big contracts is broached. […] Sources say the Warriors got Howard’s attention during this week thanks to their pitch, which featured owner Joe Lacob, coach Mark Jackson, general manager Bob Myers and special Warriors consultant Jerry West.”