Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green has been one of the players linked to the Los Angeles Lakers over the last few months as L.A. prepares itself for a busy free agency.
The Lakers should have over $30 million in available cap space next summer, hoping it will allow them to snap a star off the market. The Purple and Gold likely won’t approach Kyrie Irving after the Brooklyn Nets guard’s anti-Semitic episode earlier this season. Meanwhile, they will probably be priced out of the race for James Harden’s signature, who is expected to opt out of his contract with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Green could hit free agency next summer if he decided to decline the player option in his contract. And the 32-year-old’s altercation with teammate Jordan Poole only fuelled rumors over his future — with reports claiming the Warriors icon would like to land in L.A. if he left the Warriors.
But Green told Andspace’s Marc J. Spears he never expressed his desire to sign with the Lakers:
“I never said that. People can say what they want. I’m also not really one to react much to what one may say. I react to things when I want to react to it. I don’t react to things just because somebody said it.”
Green and Golden State have reportedly been at odds over a contract extension with the forward understood to be holding out for a max deal. But the Warriors are already projected to have one of the highest payrolls in the league with their luxury tax bill potentially exceeding $260 million.
The franchise’s financial situation could lead to Green’s departure from the San Francisco Bay Area after over a decade with the team — although the four-time NBA champion maintains he would be interested in remaining with the Warriors for the rest of his career.
Juan Toscano-Anderson believes Green-Poole incident was ‘blown out of proportion’
Although the video showing Green seemingly knocking Poole out at practice back in October shocked the NBA, the two players have seemingly made up and the incident hasn’t destabilized the team as predicted.
Juan Toscano-Anderson, who won the 2022 NBA title with the Warriors last season, then said the situation was “blown out of proportion” and that the two players retained brotherly relationship.
“People place athletes on this pedestal but then want them to act like normal people,” Toscano-Anderson added. “But then when they do normal people shit, then it’s like, ‘Oh, why are you doing stuff like that?
“I think people just have to remember that we’re humans too, man,” Toscano-Anderson added.”
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