No Warriors trade involving Monta Ellis is imminent, but it seems inevitable the star guard will be traded.
Whether it's to Philadelphia, Chicago, Memphis or Denver, the Warriors appear comfortable with the reality that moving Ellis presents their best chance to improve the team. Recent developments have shown he still has value, and most of the Warriors' decision-makers aren't tied to him.
With the draft less than two weeks away, it all seems to be creating the perfect opportunity to trade Ellis.
The Warriors are on the hunt to add a difference maker via a trade. Multiple sources confirm they have talked to Memphis about Rudy Gay, Philadelphia about Andre Iguodala, Chicago about Luol Deng and Denver about Nene.
The Iguodala option, which the Warriors have been exploring at least since the offseason began, is the one that has legs. But one team source said it's not close to happening. The expectation is that any deal would happen on or near draft day, which is June 23.
The Warriors are not actively shopping Ellis, another source said, but when the news came out that talks with the 76ers had resurfaced, it gave the Warriors a gauge of his value. Since then, multiple teams have inquired about Ellis, despite his having three years left on his contract at $11 million per year.
Point guard Stephen Curry has more trade value than Ellis because, among other reasons, Curry's contract is much more affordable, but the Warriors aren't interested in trading him. Since they have little else to offer, the Warriors "would be crazy not to strike while the iron is hot," one of the sources said.
But Golden State isn't giving away Ellis. One of the sources said that whereas the Warriors like Iguodala, they aren't in love with him, and he is one of a few options they are exploring.
According to a CBS Sports report, Ellis' agent, Jeff Fried, is working with the Warriors to send his client to a contending team. If so, it seems Warriors management isn't alone in thinking a trade is inevitable.