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Report: Warriors ‘actively exploring’ ways to keep 2-way guard Damion Lee

Damion Lee, Warriors

The Golden State Warriors are actively exploring ways to create the necessary flexibility to keep two-way guard Damion Lee on the roster after his 45 days at the NBA level expire, according to Marc Stein of The New York Times.

The Warriors have “made it clear” they want Lee on the roster next season, but are hoping they won’t lose him for too long this season.

Two-way players like Lee and fellow point guard Ky Bowman can only play for an NBA team for 45 days. Gamedays and practice days count toward the 45-day total, though travel days no longer do.

Lee and Bowman were forced into action early due to injuries to Stephen Curry and the added need for a wing player after signing Marquese Chriss and waiving Alfonzo McKinnie prior to the start of the season.

Lee has been impressive this season, making a strong case to make the rotation permanently and making the most of his opportunities. The Louisville and Drexel standout played 32 games for the Warriors last season (also as a two-way player) but had a reduced role.

This time around, he’s averaging 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.2 assists through 20 games, seven of which were starts. Lee is shooting 37.5% from deep and 88.1% from the foul line.

The youngster had a 22-point, 15-rebound outing in a win over the Houston Rockets and followed it with a 16-point, eight-rebound effort in a win over the Phoenix Suns, then topping it off with an 18-point, 12-rebound performance in a loss to the Dallas Mavericks last week.

The Warriors are no longer as injury-riddled as they were in the early portion of the season, but will need to create a roster spot to sign Lee to a full-fledged deal. Golden State has tried to cut down on practices in efforts to give Damion Lee and Ky Bowman additional days to be with the team and slice from the total 45 days they have with the Warriors.