Warriors Trade Exception Tournament Group D: Robert Covington, Rudy Gay, Thaddeus Young, Will Barton

You decide who advances.

The 2020 Warriors Trade Exception

The Trade Exception technically expires on July 7. However, Anthony Slater writes:

Everybody I’ve chatted with about the subject said they’d expect the new expiration date to land a day or two after the free-agent moratorium, even if it’s in September, since that’s where it was initially planted, for strategic purposes. Which brings us to the next question.

This trade exception was created in the Andre Iguodala trade to the Memphis Grizzlies, and is worth $17.2 million. It’s fair to say that I am no expert at how to use it. Here’s Larry Coon’s FAQ about it. But roughly speaking,

  • it needs to be used to acquire players under contract (technically there could be a sign-and-trade, but the Warriors want no part of that again after this year’s experience);

  • it can’t be combined with other exceptions or players to make it bigger;

  • it can most simply used to acquire a single player (and while there seem to be technical ways to acquire more than one, I don’t understand exactly how)

So we’re looking for players under contract for less than $17.2m, and which teams might trade to the Warriors for (possibly extremely protected) draft picks.

Local writers have come up with some excellent ideas for possible targets:

It’s time to settle this, tournament style. I’ve combined all the ideas from the local writers and added two of my own, to make a list of 16 possible targets. I will break them into four groups for a Group Stage, and the winners of each group will have a final showdown. The groups have been determined by straight alphabetical order.

The question that will be put forward to you is simply: which of these players should the Warriors most want to acquire for the trade exception?

Let’s ignore details of whether to throw in certain draft picks or whether their contracts are worth it or whether their team would even want to trade them. These are unknowable. The Warriors championship window is closing, and the time to win is now.

Group A results

Our full write-up and scouting report was posted a couple of days ago, and the results are in:

  • 45% Andre Iguodala

  • 26% Danny Green

  • 21% Dennis Schroder

  • 7% Cody Zeller

Andre Iguodala took a plurality of the vote (Twitter votes + 10 x LGW comment votes) and coasts into the Final Round. I was surprised that sentiment didn’t drive his victory to greater heights. I guess everyone is rightfully wary of his age.

Group B results

Our full write-up and scouting report was posted a couple of days ago, and the results are in:

  • 65% Domantas Sabonis

  • 27% Josh Richardson

  • 7% Evan Fournier

  • 1% Dewayne Dedmon

Sabonis easily takes the group and advances to the final.

Group C results

Our full write-up and scouting report was posted a couple of days ago, and the results are in:

  • 46% Marcus Smart

  • 37% Kelly Oubre

  • 11% Ricky Rubio

  • 6% Kelly Olynyk

Group D

  • Robert Covington

  • Rudy Gay

  • Thaddeus Young

  • Will Barton

For me, this is a serious Group of Death. These athletic wings are the fellows that Dub Nation consistently pines for.

I’ve written brief scouting reports below. All stats below are from Cleaning The Glass.

Robert Covington

  • 6'9" FORWARD, 29.4 YEARS OLD

  • 2020-21. $12,138,345

I don’t think the Rockets would trade him in a million years normally, but if their owner Tilman Fertitta goes bankrupt, that might put everything on the table. Most recently, Warriors fans were begging management to trade D’Angelo Russell for Covington.

He’s been a darling of advanced stats for years. He profiles mainly as a tall defensive stopper who can hit threes, and his total on-offs consistently are near the top of the league, though his offensive impact has varied all over the place.

Medium-usage, he scoring has mostly been above-average and his assist numbers scrape the very bottom of the league. Black hole city. In HOU, he seems to have reduced turnovers, but I’m guessing that the Harden Low-Touches Diet — can’t turn it over if you don’t have it! — will do that to many players.

These stats should confirm all your preconceptions of him as a decent 3 point shooter with not much other scoring efficiency:

And these will confirm his reputation as a defensive terror, with elite blocking, stealing and defensive rebounding. He fouls a bit too much.

Rudy Gay

  • 6'8" BIG, 33.7 YEARS OLD

  • 2020-21: $14,000,000

Once an athletic forward who frustrated everyone with his potential — think Andrew Wiggins — he’s become a sturdy role player for four teams. Wherever he goes, he’s had solid on-off numbers, though his offense seems to be in decline.

His whole career, if he gets the ball, you know he’s going to keep it, ranking near the top of Usage. His scoring efficiency has varied between above and below average, and his assist rate, considering his usage, has been poor. He also tends to turn the ball over.

His midrange jumper has been excellent for years. His finishing is average and his three point range has been erratic, with relative success above the break compared to the corners.

His defensive numbers are surprisingly good considering his limited impact in on-off (see above). For most of his career, he was very good at blocks, steals, avoiding fouls, and rebounding. You may notice a decline in the last two years, though.

Thaddeus Young

  • 6'8" BIG, 31.9 YEARS OLD

  • 2020-21: $13,545,000

Here is another switchable big forward that parts of Dub Nation have pined for. That might have made more sense as Plan B in 2016 if Kevin Durant didn’t come. At that point, Young was at the top of the league in on-off impact on both sides of the ball. In the last two seasons however his numbers have gone off a cliff. One could rationalize it bu saying he burned out in Indiana and then went to the Bulls who are the Bulls. But, he’s also almost 32…

A medium-high usage player, he’s been consistently below-average at scoring efficiently. He’s been average to above-average at passing and keeping the ball.

His offense exclusively comes from finishing (not that efficiently) and spotting up for jumpers. He is an average jump shooter for a big.

On defense, for years he is absolutely elite as a big at contesting without fouling and stealing. His rebounding and blocks are poor.

Will Barton

  • 2020-21: $13,920,000

This guy just kills the Warriors every time he faces us. Using the Doc Rivers school of GMing, that’s good enough for me. His on-off numbers are all over the place. This season he was elite on both sides of the ball.

High usage, average efficiency scoring, good assist rate and holding on to the ball.

His shots mostly come off passes and catch-and-shoot. Somehow this season he became an elite long-2 and corner-3 shooter. Growth or fluke?

He’s had solid defensive numbers. Excellent block rate, rebounding and not-fouling. Steal rate has been very low, except for this season.

Which of these four would you MOST want the Warriors to add for the trade exception?

You can vote on Twitter, or you can vote in the comments. Votes in the comments will count as 10 Twitter votes.

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