It’s offseason roster-shuffling time once again for the Warriors, though after winning another NBA championship, it’s likely that Golden State will try and retain as many players as possible for the 2022-23 campaign.
As for free-agent forward Juan Toscano-Anderson, one Bay Area reporter says that the Slam Dunk Contest participant and Oakland native is likely to stick around on a one-year deal, thanks to a few factors, including his East Bay ties.
Here’s what Connor Letourneau of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote about the situation in his free-agent primer published on Monday.
The Warriors are expected to extend Toscano-Anderson, a restricted free agent, a qualifying offer Wednesday worth $2.1 million …
Toscano-Anderson should return to the Warriors as a back-end rotation player. Not only is he a solid presence in the locker room, but the Oakland native gives the team a connection to the East Bay — something the front office has appreciated.
Chances of returning: 90%Connor Letourneau/San Francisco Chronicle
The Warriors need affordable players that can contribute, and Toscano-Anderson definitely qualifies. I thought that he’d perhaps be on his way out, but Letourneau says it’s probable he’ll remain in San Francisco. Still, JTA’s return would not be so surprising given the alternatives.
But I did find it interesting that Letourneau says the Warriors front office “has appreciated” Toscano-Anderson’s ties to Oakland, the Warriors’ former home city in the Bay Area. JTA famously grew up on 95th avenue in Oakland, hence his jersey-number choice of 95.
How much of a factor is that as the Warriors compile their roster? Probably nothing too significant. But it’s clearly an added benefit, given that Letourneau has heard it’s appreciated. This is a window into the NBA and public relations, as everything is connected when you run a business, which, at the end of the day, is what the Warriors are.
Nothing is settled though, so let’s see what the Warriors and general manager Bob Myers do. Toscano-Anderson helped earn the Warriors’ latest title, however, and it appears he’ll have a chance to defend it, and remind everyone that the Warriors are the Bay Area’s team, not just San Francisco’s.
UPDATE: It appears that Letourneau’s 10 percent wiggle room was the sweet spot. According to a report days after Letourneau’s, the Warriors are “unlikely” to retain Toscano-Anderson after not extending that $2.1 million qualifying offer.