The Warriors all but ensured their presence in the first round of the 2012 NBA draft, which is considered to be one of the best in recent memory.
Just before Thursday's trade deadline, the Warriors traded away Stephen Jackson — who they acquired from Milwaukee on Tuesday — to San Antonio. In exchange, Golden State received Spurs small forward Richard Jefferson and a conditional 2012 first-round pick.
The conditions of the pick are not yet known, but one team source said there is a "90 percent chance" Golden State will get the pick.
The Warriors also announced they bought a second-round pick from Atlanta. Golden State will receive the lower of two second round picks — either the Hawks' pick or the Phoenix Suns' pick, which is currently owned by Atlanta.
"We've had multiple discussions about acquiring additional draft picks and we will continue to pursue other opportunities as we approach the end of June," general manager Larry Riley said in a news release. "Ownership has displayed a continued willingness to invest financial resources in the draft and, as this indicates, we will explore any opportunities that will enable us to acquire additional assets."
In Jefferson, the Warriors get an 11-year veteran who has been to the NBA Finals twice. For his career, Jefferson is averaging 16 points and 4.9 rebounds. But this season, he is on pace for one of his worst seasons as a pro. He's averaging 9.2 points on 41.4 percent shooting — both on pace for career lows. His 28.5 minutes per game is the fewest he's averaged since his rookie year.
Jefferson has two years left on his contract after this season, totaling $21.2 million. So the Warriors committed to more money in the move, since Jackson had just one year remaining after this season worth about $10 million.
But the draft pick is the real coup in this transaction, from the Warriors perspective. Golden State's own pick was traded away to New Jersey and now resides in Utah's pocket. The only way the Warriors' keep their pick, based on a condition in the trade, is if they somehow wind up with one of the top seven picks in the draft. Golden State currently owns the 10th worst record in the league.