The Warriors will return the NBA's best starting five in 2023-24, barring a surprise move of not bringing Chris Paul off the bench, though they will be replacing a handful of players following their second-round exit in the playoffs.
Jordan Poole clearly leads that list. Whether it’s pundits trying to predict the future of what will happen the first time Poole plays the Warriors, or even 'NBA 2K24' teasing us all with Draymond Green guarding his former teammate in the video game’s trailer, everybody is looking forward to the return of the dynamic young guard. Poole isn’t the only one coming back.
With a little over a week left in August, the Warriors will welcome six players from last season’s team back to Chase Center next season, and that number could increase. JaMychal Green played 57 regular-season games for the Warriors last season, averaging 14.0 minutes and 6.4 points per game, but the nine-year veteran currently is a free agent. Anthony Lamb had a much bigger role than expected last season as a two-way player who was converted at the end of last season, playing 62 games and averaging 19.3 minutes and 6.7 points.
He too remains on the open market as Golden State still has two open roster spots.
Here is when the six players from last season’s Warriors team who are on NBA rosters at this time will play in front of Dub Nation again next season.
Nov. 11 vs. Cleveland Cavaliers
Golden State Warriors
Jerome was the Warriors’ other two-way player last season, and like Lamb, he also made larger contributions than the outside could have foreseen. He played 45 games (the second-most of his career) and averaged 18.1 minutes per game (also the second-most of his career). Jerome is a stronger shooter who had 48.8/38.9/92.7 shooting splits and was relied upon for being smart with the ball.
The 26-year-old point guard averaged 3.0 assists and 0.7 turnovers on a team who played like turning the ball over is the goal of the game. His 4.5 assist-to-turnover ratio made him a favorite of coach Steve Kerr and is why the Warriors were interested in bringing him back. But the Cavs’ two-year, $5 million contract of guaranteed money was an offer the Warriors couldn’t match, and one Jerome would have been wrong to turn down.
Warriors general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. essentially replaced Jerome with veteran Cory Joseph this offseason to be the Warriors’ third point guard. Joseph is going into his 13th season, and his 4.6 assist to turnover ratio ranked fourth in the NBA last season.
The Warriors also play Jerome and the Cavs in Cleveland at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse on Nov. 5, three games before Jerome and Co. come to San Francisco.
Jordan Poole, Patrick Baldwin Jr., Ryan Rollins
Dec. 22 vs. Washington Wizards
There’s no two ways about it: This is the one. This isn’t the season opener, Christmas or any other holiday. But it is the Warriors game people have circled on their calendars the loudest and boldest – physically and digitally.
What else is there to say about Poole’s return? Hey, click this for more of that! The fact is, Poole was the third-leading scorer (20.4 points per game) for the Warriors last season at 23 years old, and his sheer talent is undeniable. If the Warriors are struggling going into Dec. 22 and Poole is thriving in a season where he wasn’t punched in the face by a teammate during training camp, fans will have questions.
His return also isn’t only about him. Baldwin and Rollins, the Warriors’ top two picks in the 2022 NBA Draft, also were dealt to Washington.
From a pure basketball standpoint, getting rid of Baldwin so soon was pretty surprising. He’s 6-foot-10 (at least), can let it fly, is a former top recruit and the Warriors loved his basketball IQ. Golden State also was really high on Rollins in the 2022 draft, spending $2 million to trade up and take Rollins in the second round. A foot injury unfortunately derailed his career before it even began. Their developments won’t receive as much attention as Poole, but both will be worth monitoring.
The Warriors also play the Wizards on the road at Capital One Arena on Feb. 27.
Jan. 5 vs. Detroit Pistons
The Warriors’ James Wiseman era just didn’t work, for both parties. He was liked by everyone and put in the work. His body and fit in Kerr’s system didn’t get along, and there were too many deterrents in the way.
The chapter came to a close at last season’s trade deadline when the Warriors sent Wiseman to the Pistons as part of a multi-team deal. After missing the entire 2021-22 season to injury, Wiseman in his second season played 21 games for the Warriors and 24 as a member of the Pistons. In his 21 games with the Warriors, he played only 12.5 minutes and averaged 6.9 points and 3.5 rebounds on 4.5 shot attempts per game.
But in Detroit, Wiseman received more opportunities after the move on a rebuilding Pistons team. Wiseman averaged 25.2 minutes in the 24 games he played and put up 12.7 points and 8.1 rebounds on 10.2 shot attempts per game.
Wiseman’s total plus/minus was a minus-107 as a Warrior last season, an average of minus-5.1 per game. His total plus/minus for the Pistons was a minus-226, which averages out to a minus-9.4 per game.
Golden State goes to Detroit to play the Pistons at Little Caesars Arena on Nov. 6, the eighth game of the season.
March 18 vs. New York Knicks
Even when the Warriors signed DiVincenzo to a two-year contract in free agency last summer, it was clear he likely would only play in The City for one year. DiVincenzo’s second year of his contract was on a player option, setting him up to be the latest to cash out after playing for the Warriors.
And cash out he did. DiVincenzo, 26, signed a four-year, $50 million ($47 million guaranteed) Knicks contract to form the ultimate Villanova reunion. He was pretty much everything the Warriors wanted him to be in his lone season.
DiVincenzo’s versatility shone, playing point guard, shooting guard and even small forward. Back to full health, he averaged 9.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.3 steals per game. DiVincenzo also shot a career-best 39.7 percent from 3-point range, one season after making only 33.9 percent on his tries. Kerr will replace him between a combination of Gary Payton II and Moses Moody next season.
The Warriors will celebrate a leap year by playing the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Feb. 29.