Golden State Warriors forward Harrison Barnes is a restricted free agent this offseason, and because of that one of the prevailing thoughts going around is that a team could possibly “steal” him away from Golden State in free agency if the Warriors were to pursue another option — Kevin Durant? — which would leave Barnes out in the cold.
Yet, with his impending free agency right around the corner, the talented wing is not playing well at all, and it’s put a little bit of a question into people’s minds about whether or not he’s really worth the money he will be receiving either from the Warriors or from other teams.
He is shooting 30 percent (12 of 30) over his last six games, including 0-of-12 beyond the arc. Over his last 10 games, the 6-foot-8 forward is shooting 43.7 percent overall, 13 percent beyond the arc.
Now, as Poole goes on to accurately state, Barnes did shoot 48.8 percent from beyond the arc in the 10 games prior to this recent stretch. So this could just be the regression to the mean playing out across the board. Still, it’s a tad unnerving to witness, especially since the team has a player who could take his spot.
That player is Brandon Rush. Over the last six games, Rush is shooting 53.8 percent from deep, and the team has a better NetRtg this season with Rush alongside Curry, Thompson, Green, and Bogut than they do with Barnes in Rush’s place. This could all be just noise, but it could also be something else.
Rush, like Barnes, is a free agent after this season. However, in Rush’s case, he’s an unrestricted free agent. Still, re-signing Rush might be a more prudent move than re-signing Barnes. Realistically, they could just bring back both, but Barnes’ recent play has not been encouraging in the least.