Why converting Lamb’s contract was ‘easy decision’ for Dubs originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
By promoting Anthony Lamb’s NBA status from part-time to full-time Friday, the Warriors knew in advance that they were agitating some discomfort within the fan base and perhaps another round of wrath.
They nevertheless forged ahead. They are, after all, making a mad dash to the playoffs.
Maybe Golden State’s front office believes Lamb is a good man whose character is being wrongfully besmirched by salacious allegations dating back to his time at the University of Vermont that resulted in an active civil suit against the school.
There is no question, however, that after spending the first 70 games this season under a two-way contract, Lamb’s value has inflated in recent weeks, first with the ongoing absence of Andrew Wiggins and now with Andre Iguodala scheduled to undergo surgery next week on his left wrist.
“Pretty easy decision with our roster looking like it does, without Wiggs, without Andre,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr told reporters Friday in Atlanta. “We definitely needed another wing with size to guard multiple spots.”
Lamb does not have the skills, athleticism, or experience to match those of the two veterans, but at 6-foot-6, 235 pounds, he is a suitable physical replacement for Wiggins (6-foot-7, 200) and Iguodala ( 6-foot-6, 195).
Lamb has been a reliable player off the bench. The combo forward provides muscle, plays hard, usually makes smart decisions within the team concept and is shooting = 37.9 percent from distance. Having been on the roster all season, there is no need to introduce him to the playbook, as would be the case with a free-agent acquisition.
The contract conversation from two-way to standard means Lamb will receive a generous increase, rising from $509,000 – half the rookie minimum salary – for a full season to about $250,000 for the remainder of the season, according to Spotrac.com.
Lamb’s promotion opens a two-way spot, which will go to guard Lester Quiñones. He’ll be promoted from the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors and will join Ty Jerome, also a guard, as the team’s two-way players.
“I’d love to add Ty Jerome, too,” Kerr said. “But we don’t have enough spots; we could only pick one. So, we chose Lamb, based on positional need.”
That choice could subject Lamb to greater scrutiny. He is being accused of raping Kendall Ware, a former UVM swimmer, after their six-month relationship ended in 2019. Her civil suit against the school cites “deliberate indifference” to “student-on-student harassment and sexual assault.”
Lamb has denied the allegations, is not a defendant in the lawsuit and issued a statement through the Warriors saying he “welcomed any investigation into the matter.”
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The Warriors have said they have done their due diligence through the NBA and the teams with which Lamb was previously a member.
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