When you assemble a starting five of perennial All-Stars, there is little money to afford a supporting cast. The Warriors were fortunate enough to land DeMarcus Cousins as a surprise signing this off-season. While the fans are centered around Cousins' play, the management team is more centered around his lesser contractual needs. He took a pay cut to join the team and could have easily claimed near double his ask if he had signed with another organization. This allowed the team to retain Shaun Livingston and Andre Iguodala. Both of these bench players have over 13 years of experience within the league and have been instrumental pieces in the team's recent playoff and championship runs. The blossoming talent that is Jordan Bell lessened the blow of losing both centers the team has rostered from last season. Having guys like Quinn Cook and Jonas Jerebko as the third line of defense is nothing short of extraordinary. The team is in a nice spot this season and they will be able to continue to keep their starters happy and supported.
Q: With the Fab-5 rostered, will the team oppose the idea of sending someone to the bench?
A: While there are favorable options in the second unit, there is limited experience coming from the forward and center positions. The team operated with 3-guard sets often last season because they faced a similar situation that this year's squad will face. This could see the movement of a Draymond Green or Klay Thompson to a second unit if it helps benefit the team's matchups. The starting unit is oozing with talent, so this isn't a stretch for the team to explore.
Q: Can DeMarcus Cousins settle into his role?
A: DeMarcus Cousins has been a do-it-all talent in both Sacramento and New Orleans. Playing alongside Anthony Davis taught him the importance of ball movement and increased his range. He learned to work inside out. He will have to continue to add new elements to his game because he will be leaned on for things beyond his scoring capabilities.
Q: Does lack of experience upfront limit the effectiveness of the second unit?
A: Iguodala and Livingston are the leaders off the bench. As we climb to the forward and center positions, we see few players who have been in the league for 5 or more years. None of the bench players come from previous starting positions, so this bodes well for their ability to be content with slotting. DeMarcus Cousins will likely join the rotation later in the season, so he may even offer some consistency in the second unit before he is given the full-go.