OAKLAND -– With no fewer than five players in the mix, it will be a fierce battle for the final roster spot on the defending champion Warriors.
It will be even more competitive by Monday. That’s when veteran guard Ben Gordon is expected to have finalized an agreement to join the crowd, with designs on providing scoring off the bench.
The Warriors expect the paperwork to be completed before they go to work on Tuesday.
“He’s a proven scorer, a proven shooter,” coach Steve Kerr said Friday afternoon. “He’s at an age where he should still be able to play. Physically, he looks good.
“So we’ll give him a chance. No guarantees of anything. But we do have, potentially, one roster opening. So we’ll give him a look.”
Gordon, 32, will shoot it out with the likes of Jarell Eddie, Chris Babb, Ian Clark and Juwon Slaten for a role in the backcourt behind starters Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. Shaun Livingston, Leandro Barbosa and Brandon Rush will occupy the other guard spots off the bench.
“He’s going to come to camp and we’ll see what happens,” general manager Bob Myers said. “We have one roster spot, so we’ll keep that open and let the guys come in and compete for it.”
[RELATED: Can Eddie shoot his way on to roster?]
Guard scoring off the bench is really the only available spot on a team that returned its top nine players in terms of minutes played. What the Warriors are seeking is someone who can replace –- and perhaps provide an upgrade on -– Justin Holiday, who signed with Atlanta.
With Eddie, Babb, Clark and Slaten relative youngsters, Gordon owns the strongest resume among the new invitees. He has spent 11 seasons in the NBA, having mixed results along the way.