The Golden State Warriors have an alternative course of action in the event they fail to land Kevin Durant in free agency. Recent Golden State Warriors rumors revealed that the Warriors are also major players in the Hassan Whiteside and Al Horford sweepstakes.
While it’s no secret that the Warriors are heavily recruiting Durant this offseason, the decision is still his to make. He may end up re-signing with the Oklahoma City Thunder when the free agency smoke clears.
If Durant ultimately decides to remain with his incumbent team, the Warriors will immediately focus their attention towards free agents Hassan Whiteside, Al Horford and Joakim Noah. The team will also target Nicolas Batum or Evan Turner to bolster its small forward position, multiple Golden State Warriors rumors suggested.
NBC Sports stated that Horford is the kind of big man who would fit perfectly in Steve Kerr’s system. Not only that, the 6-foot-10 All-Star would be an offensive upgrade over Andrew Bogut without giving away too much on defense.
Whiteside would also be a front court improvement for the Warriors. However, he can be very difficult to work with. Speaking on Zach Lowe’s podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst criticized Whiteside for not being the typical locker room guy.
“His style of play, his personality, the way he goes about his business is not congruent with the way the Heat normally go about themselves,” said Windhorst.
Despite his off-court issues, Whiteside is an exceptional defensive talent on the court. He finished the 2015-16 NBA regular season as the league’s blocks leader with a total of 269 rejections. His per game averages include 14.2 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.7 blocks, as per Basketball Reference.
Two seasons ago, the 7-foot defensive ace was begging teams for a workout so he could continue his NBA career. After experiencing unprecedented individual success with the Miami Heat, Whiteside now enjoys the spotlight.
“I find it flattering, because in my past, I was trying to call those teams and now it’s the other way around,” Whiteside shared to ESPN. “It’s a flattering experience and I’m thankful for this opportunity.”
Horford is class personified and would likely re-sign with the Atlanta Hawks, but nothing is set in stone at this point. On the other hand, Whiteside said he is open to all possibilities. He will make his decision as soon as free agency opens on July 1.
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