Buddy Hield reportedly chose Warriors over Lakers ‘because of the opportunity to win’ a title

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Good news just arrived at the Golden State camp, as the team agreed to acquire Buddy Hield from Philadelphia in a sign-and-trade deal. According to insider Shams Charania, the Warriors must send a 2031 Dallas second-round pick to the Sixers in order to complete the transfer. 

The guard’s new contract is guaranteed for two years at $21 million, but with $18 million paid over the first two seasons, and the remaining $3 million with a partial guarantee in the third year. As reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, there is also a player option for a non-guaranteed fourth campaign.

Even though many teams were showing interest in the prolific shooter, including the purple and gold franchise, Buddy was clear on why the Bay Area was his preferred destination. “Hield chose the Warriors because of the opportunity to win, per league sources,” The Athletic reported. “His suitors included the Detroit Pistons and Lakers.”

With this move, the Warriors begin the reconstruction of their roster after losing two veteran stars like Chris Paul, and of course, club legend Klay Thompson. In a way, Hield comes as the direct replacement for Klay, who already signed for the Mavericks in free agency.

The former 76ers guard ranks with new teammate Stephen Curry among the leader in three-pointer made over the past five seasons in the NBA. Despite this new signing, the Golden State core feels heartbroken after their losing four-time champion shooter.

“I don’t really know how I feel about it. Klay told us last week… When Klay told me, I was just able to listen and it wasn’t like a ‘Yo, we could finish like this’ or ‘You should rethink this.’ It was just like ‘Wow, congrats bro. I’m happy for you,'” Draymond Green shared on his podcast.

Hield, who is currently representing the Bahamas for a spot in the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, averaged 12.2 points per match and shot 38.9% from three-point range in his first season in Philadelphia. Before the Sixers, he played for the Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, and New Orleans Pelicans.

He explained why playing for his country is a priority right now. “I love basketball. I love playing. Getting to the Olympics is the ultimate goal. When I get older, I can tell my kids I played in the Olympics. My grandkids will know I played in the Olympics, and it’s special,” said Buddy, who has earned victories against Finland and Poland this summer.

Reports suggest that Thompson was aware about the Warriors’ decision for weeks now and had been ready for a new challenge outside of Golden State

The five-time All-Star signed a three-year, $50 million contract with Dallas in unrestricted free agency after 11 years in California. The shooting guard reportedly felt “disrespected” about the Warriors’ intentions and was more than ready to start a new challenge elsewhere.

“There was little communication between Thompson, the Warriors and Thompson’s agent, Greg Lawrence, and ultimately no offer in this cycle,” sources reported. “Warriors sources maintained a plan to eventually make a competitive offer in relation to his market once other business was settled. But they never had the chance. Many league sources said Thompson’s decision to depart was unofficially made weeks ago.”

Despite his former teammates feeling happy for Klay and his new contract, there is a bittersweet feeling around the Golden State camp. According to Green, outside of the court, the relationships will be long-lasting.

“Just to reassure that changes nothing for us, changes the basketball court obviously, but the relationships, they are what they are forever… I haven’t really been able to process the feeling… I might have dropped a tear or two,” the power forward assured.