Andre Iguodala is back! Below is how things transpired (very “Iggy”, i.e., right up his alley, if you will) and some reactions from our Discord server and Golden State Warriors teammates.
How it went down
It all started two evenings ago when Shams Charania reported that Iguodala had narrowed his choices to the Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets.
Because the Nets and Lakers had already used their Taxpayer Mid-Level Exception (TPMLE) salary slots on Kendrick Nunn and Patty Mills, respectively, we deduced on the Discord server that Andre was looking at a veteran minimum slot.
This was a far cry from a few years ago when the Sacramento Kings entered the bidding for Iguodala, forcing Bob Myers and Joe Lacob to fork out a contract that paid $16 million per year. But that was a much younger Andre, who will be 38 at the end of January in an NBA that ages quickly.
User “Iknoso” on our Discord server found a nice analogy to what Iguodala might’ve been going through, left only with veteran’s minimum offers:
At around 7:00AM the following morning on Friday, August 6th, ESPN’s Jordan Schultz reported that Iguodala had “positive communication” with the Brooklyn Nets and was “enthused by the idea of playing for Steve Nash, who spent a good amount of time as a consultant for the Warriors in the old Oakland practice facility, primarily spending time with Kevin Durant on individual skills.
Jordan Schultz @Schultz_ReportLeague sources confirm the #Lakers and #Warriors are both interested in signing Andre Igoudala. Remember, Iggy - who was once represented by Rob Pelinka - said this two years ago on @HowardBeck pod: “Rob is my man. He’s always been good to me. My wife loves him.”
Now, understandably, comparing playing to the Warriors alongside Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green ought to pale in comparison to playing in Brooklyn and may even anger the vocal minority on #WarriorsTwitter, but the more erudite fans of DubNation such as those on our Discord server immediately smelled something fishy and deduced that Iguodala must have been negotiating through the media.
It seemed like he was making one last-ditch effort to have his potential suitors bid higher for him, such as getting Myers to use the TPMLE instead of the veteran’s minimum, as with Kent Bazemore’s contract last season, which effectively gave Bazemore a salary that was slightly higher than the “vet min”.
Perhaps Andre read the tea leaves and just accepted that he would get no higher than the vet min because at precisely 8:07AM PDT, Jonathan Abrams of The NY Times dropped the bomb:
The timing of that news break, which had to have been planned ahead, and the one from Schultz almost made me think the leak about being enthused playing for Nash might have even been a joke from Andre. You know how he likes to screw with the media!
Here are some select quotes from Iguodala in that NYT article:
The headline of Abrams’ article said Andre wanted to retire a Warrior. “The opportunity to end it here, was just something special…kind of refreshing to have my mind get a breath of fresh air…I think I’ve got some more time left. Where I’m comfortable at is I can decide when I’m ready to go. I think I want to leave with just a little bit left. I don’t want to go out on one leg. I know I’ve got a few more years. It’s just my decision whether it’s one or two or three or whatever it may be. I shouldn’t even say three. One or two.”
On returning to GSW: “It was kind of just all-inviting vibes, where it was carefree, relaxing and it was kind of like Hawaiian-type vibes.”
On Miami Heat’s culture: “We had a drill called Hunger Games, where it was exactly what it sounds like from the movie — when you’re talking about to the death. That’s when I learned to appreciate different approaches.”
Iguodala said he is looking forward to mentoring the team’s younger players like the veterans Kevin Ollie and Aaron McKie did for him when he entered the league — a component he feels is often overlooked — and using the “militaristic, kind of Navy seal approach” he learned in Miami. “There’s a fine line between your superstar and your eighth, ninth guy coming off the bench and all of our guys were always ready.”
There was a cool shout out to legendary Warriors equipment manager Eric Housen: “probably just as important as Steph Curry, as far as what he’s done for the organization.” Video coordinator Jacob Rubin was also shouted out.
“…have real relationships beyond basketball, so you know people don’t have ulterior motives and it’s just genuine and organic.”
A half-hour after the NYT break, The Athletic’s Anthony Slater confirmed that the deal was a vet min slot. While Iguodala is set to make $2.6 million (just a one-year contract), pre-ordained by the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement for veterans of his tenure, vet min salaries will only count as $1.7 million against the cap, as researched by our Discord member “Lepidoptery”.
Later in the afternoon, the SF Chronicle’s Connor Letourneau reported, “A source close to Iguodala told The Chronicle that Iguodala would’ve been at peace with retiring this summer. But when the Warriors called this week and offered him one last season with the franchise that has come to feel like family, he couldn’t resist a chance at a storybook ending.”
Steph led the way with a nice little 24-second video production that began with an audio clip of ESPN’s Max Kellerman quipping, “I want Andre Iguodala.”
Shaun Livingston, now employed by the Warriors’ front office, was clearly happy:
Draymond went on Instagram and said, “Yesirrrrrrrrrrrr…Wecome back MVP”:
Later that night, after throwing out the first pitch at an Oakland A’s game, Juan Toscano-Anderson finally got time to reflect:
That was a bit ironic in that head coach Steve Kerr last season often mentioned Toscano-Anderson and Iguodala in the same context:
Social media reaction
Hollywood’s Josiah Johnson had the funniest reaction:
To which Andre himself replied:
While there are surely tons of Iguodala highlights and compilations available for consumption on YouTube, here was one on the free platform known as Twitter highlighting Andre’s defense:
Another recalled Andre saying, “I love Steph,” in a postgame locker room clip from ESPN. We also have a ton on our YouTube channel (you can Google “youtube.com letsgowarriors iguodala” for a sampling), but I couldn’t find this one, as Iguodala often gave informal ad hoc media sessions like this, so I might have been in the main room recording whomever was on the podium:
A lot of families have or had moms and aunts with Iguodala pegged as their favorite Warriors player. “She was hardcore obsessed with his arms,” said one of our members, “C.DubNation”.
Another Discord member, Ricky Padilla, said, “My favorite memory of Andre was from the JaVale McGee Softball game after they won in 2017. Seeing him and his son holding the trophy and playing softball was awesome. Especially trying to get each other out.
Now for a Warriors game, it’s have to be the Oracle Watch party for Game 6 in 2015 when he was announced the Finals MVP.”
The memories of Iguodala that stand out for me include the China trip the summer of 2013, when we first were introduced to his soft-spoken personality. It was really hard to hear him from a distance and he always seemed very philosophical.
And then later that season, he would throw in a factoid about, say, affirmative action or slavery at any given moment. So you never knew what you were gonna get with an Andre Iguodala scrum. At the same time, you could get a mundane one.
Nowadays, we’ve come to accept that and with the reunion with Steph, Klay and Dray, you can probably expect a lot more of the fun to come out, as well as the philosophical stuff as this could be his last year.
Friendly reminder: Four Pillars of LGW
The article above has already all been posted in bits and pieces on our Discord server, although it did take a few hours to copy and paste things here on the website.
When the season starts and I presumably have daily access to the team, the price will go up from just $1/month to $5/month. That will coincide with access to this website, that is to say, the Patreon method will be turned off and this website’s subscriptions will be turned on at $5/month and you’ll get additional free access to the Discord as part of the package, if you didn’t have it already.
Also, our Instagram account will play a role in the visuals and the feel of being around the team. We will not be posting as much on Twitter because of the negativity on there, so if you love Twitter’s outrage, quite frankly you’re probably not a good fit for our content and our growing community. And that’s fine by me.
Because of my access to the team, we are going to keep things positive on our four-pillared platforms and we do not revel nor seek clicks by throwing Warriors teammates or front-office personnel under the bus.
With the advent of social media affecting not just DubNation, but also the general public as we have seen with the Trump presidency, anti-vaxxers and politics in general, apps like Twitter and Reddit (and Instagram, although a good portion of its users are more focused on visuals/experiences and not commentary), there is a lot of misinformation out there as users become increasingly unable to discern what is entertainment versus what is information. Our currency will be on Warriors basketball information and knowledge.
And please check our Instagram for more Iguodala pics coming up. The four pillars of LetsGoWarriors will be as follows, in order of priority:
YouTube channel & livestreams
Discord server (the speed of which is unmatched, even vs Twitter, as we are able to conduct live interview sessions from where I’m literally standing at whatever Warriors event)
Instagram account (as described)
Posts on this website