J.J. Abrams, reporting for the New York Times, tweets that Andre Iguodala will return to Golden State where he won three NBA championships rather than with Brooklyn.
Andre Iguodala tells @NYTSports that he is returning to the @warriors.— Jonathan Abrams (@Jpdabrams) August 6, 2021
“The relationship with the fans, the relationship with the Bay, the opportunity to end it here, was just something special.”--@andre https://t.co/rByRkaNEbK
The tweet ends 15 hours of speculation on where Iguodala, who was MVP of the Warriors’ 2015 NBA championship, would wind up after the Heat waived him earlier in the week.
In a tweeted video Thursday night, Shams Charania reported that Iguodala had “narrowed” his choice of teams for the upcoming season to the Nets, Warriors and Lakers.
Three-time NBA champion Andre Iguodala narrows his playing choices to three teams: pic.twitter.com/o3EK6p7FZh— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 6, 2021
Friday morning, Jordan Schultz of ESPN added to the speculation that the Nets and Iguodala have had “positive communications” and that Iguodala had narrowed his choice to the Nets and Warriors ... with the prospect of playing for Steve Nash a plus.
Iggy update: Despite interest from the #Lakers, Andre Igoudala’s current top two are the #Warriors and now the #Nets, league sources say. Brooklyn and Iggy have had “positive communication,” I’m told. Andre - a 3x champ - is enthused by the idea of playing for Steve Nash. https://t.co/HpqhezgdA8— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) August 6, 2021
As Charania noted, the 37-year-old unrestricted free agent was wanted mostly for his championship pedigree and locker room leadership. The 6’6” Iguodala won three titles with the Warriors in 2015 — being named MVP — as well as in 2017 and 2018 when he teamed up with Kevin Durant. Iguodala became a free agent when the Heat earlier in the week declined a team option worth $15 million.
Of the three teams in pursuit of Iguodala, only Golden State could offer him more than that vets minimum, a difference of about $4 million. However, Charania reported Iguodala will sign for vets minimum.
A 17-year veteran of the NBA, Iguodala played in 63 games, five of them starts, last season, averaging 4.4 points in 21 minutes with shooting splits of 38/33/66. He hasn’t averaged double figures in points during a regular season in nine years, but is particularly prized for his post-season experience. He has appeared in 170 post-season games more than any current Net.
The same three teams mentioned by Charania vied for Patty Mills earlier this week with the Nets coming away the winner in that sweepstakes. The Nets would have been able to offer Iguodala the veterans minimum, having given Mills the taxpayers MLE. In addition, the Nets roster situation was getting tight with 12 players on guaranteed deals — including Cam Thomas who signed Thursday as well as Patty Mills and James Johnson who are likely to sign in next few days; one on a non-guaranteed deal and a second first round pick guaranteed a two-year contract.
In 2015, Iguodala averaged 16.3 points, 4.0 assists, and 5.8 rebounds in the Finals. He was also tasked with guarding LeBron James, who made only 38.1 percent of his shots when Iguodala was in the game. He became the first player to win the MVP without starting every game of the Finals.
- Andre Iguodala has Nets on short list of preferred stops - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- Where the Nets stand in free agency heading into Summer League - Alec Schiffer - The Athletic
- Nets among three teams being considered by free agent Andre Iguodala: report - Alex Smith - SNY