SAN FRANCISCO, United States (AFP) — Andre Iguodala will have his number nine jersey retired by the Golden State Warriors, the NBA club announced Sunday in confirming his trade to the Memphis Grizzlies.
The 35-year-old US swingman and a projected first-round NBA Draft pick were sent to Memphis in exchange for forward Julian Washburn and a traded player exception, giving them future help under NBA salary cap rules.
Iguodala helped the Warriors reach the past five NBA Finals, with Golden State taking the title in 2015, 2017 and 2018 and Iguodala earning the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player Award in 2015, largely due to his defensive work on LeBron James and without having started a regular-season game.
Warriors co-chairman Joe Lacob said Iguodala played a greater role than the team expected when signing him in 2013.
“We envisioned him becoming a vital part of a young, up-and-coming team with championship aspirations. As we look back six years later, we actually underestimated what his value would be to our team, both on the court and in the locker room,” Lacob said.
“Andre sacrificed for the betterment of our team and, in one of the best stories of this journey, earned NBA Finals MVP honors in 2015. He has been absolutely vital to our success during five consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals and three championships. We thank Andre for all of his contributions and look forward to seeing his number in the rafters at Chase Center.”
Lacob announced a similar number retirement tribute to Kevin Durant a week ago when reports unveiled the injured superstar would leave Golden State for the Brooklyn Nets.
The Warriors leave the NBA’s oldest arena in Oakland for a new $1 billion arena next season in San Francisco where championship banners and retired numbers would be honored.
In 413 regular-season games over six seasons with the Warriors, Iguodala averaged 7.3 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.08 steals.
In the playoffs, Iguodala contributed averages of 9.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 1.17 steals in 104 appearances.
Over 15 career NBA seasons with the Warriors, Philadelphia and Denver, Iguodala has averaged 12.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 1.5 steals.
Washburn, 27, played 18 games for Memphis last season, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds.
© Agence France-Presse