Klay Thompson, Mavericks agree to $50M deal but Warriors yet to finalize sign-and-trade, per reports

Klay Thompson has agreed to join the Dallas Mavericks on a three-year, $50 million deal with a player option on the final year, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. However, the Golden State Warriors have not yet finalized their end of the deal, as what is going back to them has not been finalized, according to Yahoo’s Jake Fischer. The reported move would come through a sign-and-trade that would send Josh Green to the Charlotte Hornets. Thompson, a five-time All-Star and four-time champion, has spent his entire career to this point playing for the Golden State Warriors. 

However, after years of expensive luxury taxes, several draft picks spent on guards that could replace him and a high-profile and failed pursuit of Paul George, the Warriors have ultimately elected not to bring back Thompson, likely clearing the way for him to join Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving in Dallas.

The Warriors reportedly offered Thompson a two-year, $48 million deal last offseason. That is far smaller than the four-year, $100 million pact Draymond Green secured as a free agent, and it was also significantly lower than the four-year, $128 million contract Jordan Poole got when the Warriors thought he might be Thompson’s long-term replacement at shooting guard. Thompson rejected that $48 million offer, and during the season, the Warriors slowly began to rely more on more heavily on rookie shooting guard Brandin Podziemski, even bringing Thompson off of the bench for a stretch. 

Now, the trio of Thompson, Green and Stephen Curry will split up after one of the greatest runs any three teammates have ever had. Those three players have the third-most playoff wins as a trio in NBA history with 98, trailing only Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Michael Cooper (110) and Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili (126). Curry is the NBA’s all-time leader in 3-pointers with 3,747, and Thompson is at No. 6 with 2,481. In all likelihood, they will both retire in the top five having spent the majority of their careers together.

But now, they will separate with Thompson seemingly heading south to join the reigning Western Conference champions. The Dallas offense sputtered in the NBA Finals scoring only 106.7 points per 100 possessions. An extra shooter will do that unit a world of good, but stylistically, Thompson will have to adjust to a system that is, at least on paper, the exact opposite of the one he is coming from with the Warriors. Golden State plays a motion offense designed to punish teams for napping off ball. The Mavericks have an incredibly heliocentric offense built around Doncic’s individual shot-creation. There are going to have to be compromises on both sides here, but with players this talented, that is feasible.

Thompson was also reportedly linked to the two Los Angeles teams, the Lakers and the Clippers. The fits there made sense given his childhood in the region. His father, Mychal Thompson, played for the Lakers. But the Lakers were a Play-In team last season, and the Clippers lost Paul George. The Mavericks will be bringing back most of last season’s relatively young Western Conference champion, and now, assuming this deal gets done, only figure to be more formidable heading into the 2024-25 season.

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