Zaza Pachulia bids farewell to Warriors on Instagram
Known for their ultra-small lineups (often to close out games), the Warriors simply have not much need for a traditional center like Pachulia or JaVale McGee any longer – even more so with DeMarcus Cousins signed, who provides more versatility with his scoring, particularly his ability to stretch the floor and attack off the dribble. The Dubs also have some young big men with similarly limited skills that are in their best interests to develop, such as the promising Jordan Bell as well as Damian Jones.
The 34 year-old saw the writing on the wall with his dwindling playing time and opted to head to the Motor City and sign a one year, $2.4 million deal with the Pistons.
Like most players that depart their team, it’s always customary to post their farewells through Instagram and the 6-foot-11 enforcer wasn’t any different.
Words can’t describe how thankful and humbled I’m for the opportunity and experience I got in last two years. These golden moments will be remembered forever for me and my family. Thank you @warriors and Dub Nation for love and support. Same time I’m very excited to join @detroitpistons and play for coach Casey. Can’t wait to meet my new teammates and get the season started. #Warriors #Pistons #NBA
Despite his limitations, Pachulia is considered a legend in the Bay Area for saving the Warriors’ title hopes back in 2017 for injuring, as many accuse him of, the San Antonio Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard during the Western Conference Finals, thus sidelining the forward for the rest of the series. This is on top of his many flagrant fouls and questionable plays that, depending on who you’re rooting for, is either dirty or just plain toughness and physicality.
With the Pistons, Pachulia is expected to back up center Andre Drummond and should fit in much better given that new coach Dwane Casey is known for employing standard lineups.