The Golden State Warriors have picked up their team option on forward Marreese Speights, the team announced Monday.
Speights, 27, will make a little over $3.8 million in the final year of his contract with Golden State, who acquired him as a free agent in 2013 using the mid-level exception. He averaged a career high 10.4 points to go along with 4.3 rebounds in 76 regular season-games with the Warriors.
Speights posted a 19.58 player efficiency rating in 2014-15, good for third highest on the team, and was 10th in the league in points per minute. Speights was Golden State’s most consistent scoring threat off the bench for much of last season.
With Speights locked up, the Warriors will have at least two players, including rookie Kevon Looney, that can play the backup power forward should David Lee be moved this offseason.
However, if Golden State is unable to move Lee and re-sign Draymond Green, they could very well be between $15-$20 million into the luxury tax, meaning they would have to pay an additional $3.25 for every dollar of Speights’ contract, putting his true cap hit over $15 million.
Speights’ signing appears to be a strong indicator that Golden State is confident they can move Lee.