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Golden State Warriors Bench Overhaul: Zaza Pachulia And David West Out, Jonas Jerebko In

By Fitzgerald Cecilio
on Jul 08, 2018 09:05 PM EDT
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Jonas Jerebko
The Warriors are expected to sign versatile forward Jonas Jerebko after he clears waivers and become a free agent. Jerebko’s expected signing means the end to tenure of Zaza Pachulia and David West. (Photo : Utah Jazz | YouTube)

The Golden State Warriors have implemented a partial overhaul of their reserves as they try to win a third straight NBA title next season.

Heading into the last season's playoffs, it was obvious that the Warriors were trying to go to their young players rather than rely on their veteran big men. In the NBA Finals, it was evident that veterans Zaza Pachulia and David West were on their way out.

West played a total of 28 minutes, while Pachulia saw action for a mere six minutes in the NBA Finals. Center Jordan Bell logged in 54 minutes against the Cleveland Cavaliers, whom the Warriors finished off via sweep en route to a second consecutive NBA crown.

Warriors Signed All-Star Center Cousins

The Warriors then made a surprising move when they signed All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins to a one-year contract. The Warriors were also expected to sign Kevon Looney, Jonas Jerebko, and Patrick McCaw, increasing the Warriors roster to 14.

Anthony Slater of The Athletic revealed that if the Warriors indeed sign Jerebko, then it will be over for both Pachulia and West. The two big men won two NBA championship rings with the Warriors.

Another former Warriors big man, JaVale McGee, recently signed a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers. McGee will play alongside LeBron James, who signed a four-year, $154 million contract with the Lakers as a free agent.

"It was assumed, but the expected agreement with Jonas Jerebko basically puts an end to any thoughts of a reunion with Zaza Pachulia and David West," said Slater.

Jerebko A Key Player Off the Bench

A versatile stretch forward, Jerebko could fill the role left by Nick Young, who will not be signed by the Warriors. Jerebko's outside shooting can pull out opposing big men outside the shaded lane, creating more space for Cousins and Draymond Green to operate inside.

After he was recently waived by the Utah Jazz, Jerebko could join the Warriors on a one-year deal if no team claims him and guarantees his $4.2 million salary for the 2018-19 season, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

The 31-year-old Jerebko can ink a one-year veteran minimum deal with the Warriors. The 6-foot-10 Jerebko made 41 percent of his three-point attempts with the Jazz last season, where he averaged 5.8 points and 3.3 boards in 74 games. In the playoffs, Jerebko suited up for 10 games, averaging 1.9 points in almost eight minutes of action.

A second-round pick by the Detroit Pistons in the 2009 NBA Draft, Jerebko has suited up for three teams in his career. He played four and a half seasons with the Pistons, two and a half seasons with the Boston Celtics, and one year with the Jazz.

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