The Golden State Warriors and Washington Wizards agreed to a trade this week that would send Jordan Poole to D.C. and bring Chris Paul to The Bay.
Given that the Warriors had just given Poole a four-year, $128 million contract one offseason earlier, the move caught many off guard.
You don’t often see a 24-year-old who was once dubbed the future of the franchise swapped out for a 38-year-old who played in just 59 games one year prior.
On Friday, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr offered a blunt assessment as to why the organization ultimately decided to make this move.
“We sensed we needed a shift,” Kerr told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic. “Didn’t mean we needed an overhaul, but we needed a shift of some sort.
“I think everybody in the organization sensed that. And it feels like we’ve made a pretty significant shift without giving up our identity and our sense of who we are as a team. I think, all in all, it’s a very positive shift.”
Paul, for his part, seems excited about the future. He said this week that he had already spoken to Stephen Curry and that their talk “was good.”
Caught up with Chris Paul tonight – he is in his Winston-Salem hometown promoting his new book “Sixty-One.”
Here is CP3 and his reaction on going to the Warriors – he has already talked to Steph Curry. pic.twitter.com/8RbDGXRvA1
— Scott Fowler (@scott_fowler) June 22, 2023
All that being said, it’s hard to ignore the other circumstances that may have led to Golden State’s decision.
Poole had been growing increasingly and very vocally annoyed with his role on the Warriors. That coupled with the Draymond Green situation was creating an untenable dynamic.
Poole’s first move immediately upon learning of the trade was telling.
It will be interesting to see if he prefers D.C., especially given what the team seems to have in store for him.
As for Paul and the Warriors, time will tell how that relationship ultimately works out.
At least KAT can stay healthy for his offseason vacations. https://t.co/Ma2lg6vBQz
— Game 7 (@game7__) June 25, 2023
On paper, it isn’t the smoothest of fits. Nor does it make a ton of sense long-term.
But Golden State has definitely earned the benefit of the doubt.
Will Kerr, Curry and Paul ultimately find a way to make this experiment pay off for all parties involved? One way or another, an answer will emerge next season.
Jennifer Withers Hoey is a former Business Development Manager who transitioned to writing about sports. With valuable connections all over the West Coast, she has used those contacts to break some of the most interesting stories pertaining to the Portland Trail Blazers, Oregon Ducks, LA Lakers, LA Clippers, Seattle Supersonics (RIP), and more.