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Report: Patrick McCaw prioritizing role in contract talks

Patrick McCaw, Warriors

Patrick McCaw’s public saga of disagreement with the Golden State Warriors has been qualified as “bizarre” and “strange” to many in NBA circles who are to see a 10th man playing hardball with nearly no leverage to do so. Some even thought the third-year player could potentially be seeking his way off the roster.

The UNLV product turned down two different offers from the front office, a $1.7 million qualifying offer and a two-year, $5.2 million deal that could see him become an unrestricted free agent in 2020.

It seems that McCaw driving a hard bargain isn’t about meriting more money, but rather a more significant role with the team — one that would allow his career to take off, instead of being trapped among a multitude of stars with no clear route to a starting position.

Via Anthony Slater of The Athletic:

There’s something that’s becoming increasingly clear: This isn’t as much about money for McCaw as it is about opportunity. Sources indicate that both McCaw and his father, Jeff, who has become a vocal part of this process, believe a more expansive role is the best thing for his growth and eventual earning potential.

It’s not just about the minute total, though that’s important. It’s about role. With the Warriors, McCaw is in line to get decent run on the league’s most high-profile team, available to showcase himself on the biggest stage, just like he did two seasons ago as a rookie contributor in the Game 5 championship closeout over the Cavaliers, when his stock was at its highest. That sounds like a very appealing one-year path for a 22-year-old trying to revive his diminished value.

McCaw is bound for a similar role as the one he had last season, a backup with minutes in the teens who would get more ample opportunities when the team decides to rest veterans like Shaun Livingston and Andre Iguodala, or as an injury replacement.

The 22-year-old struggled last season with shooting inconsistencies and injuries, which kept him out of the picture when it mattered most — only getting spare minutes after returning from a spinal injury during the last six postseason games.

The route is a tough one, but one the 6-foot-7 wing has deemed necessary to secure his future. The addition of rookie Jacob Evans, as well as marksman Jonas Jerebko, will likely prove the biggest impediments to consistent playing time, as the Warriors were quick to address their defensive and 3-point shooting needs in the offseason.