SAN FRANCISCO — Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green is declining his $27.5 million player option and will enter unrestricted free agency, Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Monday.
“We will continue to talk to Golden State and explore all options,” Paul told ESPN.
It was expected Green would opt out and now he can talk with the Warriors as well as explore sign-and-trades and free agency.
The Warriors, though, have been motivated to sign Green on a new deal, sources said.
The four-time All-Star has been a pillar for the Warriors dynasty over the last decade since he was drafted with the 35th overall pick in 2012. He has often been referred to as the team’s heart and soul, while also anchoring their defense.
This past season, though, called some of Green’s leadership into question. After punching Jordan Poole at training camp — an incident Warriors coach Steve Kerr called the franchise’s biggest crisis during his tenure at the time, and later admitted left a cloud over their entire season — Green struggled to fully regain the trust of his teammates.
Green admitted that the altercation impacted his ability to be the vocal, and sometimes abrasive, leader that has been helpful to Golden State in the past. He said he felt this prevented the team from being able to perform at its full capabilities. But there is a strong belief that all parties would be able to move forward and have both Green and Poole on the team next season.
Green averaged 8.5 points on 52.7 percent shooting, 7.2 rebounds and 6.8 assists per game this season.
With Warriors president and general manager Bob Myers leaving the organization earlier this offseason, newly appointed GM Mike Dunleavy Jr. will be tasked with finding a new deal with Green.