The Golden State Warriors have agreed to terms with guard Leandro Barbosa on a one-year contract worth the veteran minimum salary on Thursday, as reported by ESPN’s Marc Stein. The Miami Heat were said to have also been interested in the 11-year veteran.
Barbosa, currently the starting point guard for Brazil’s 2014 FIBA World Cup team, joins a Warriors bench that has already seen plenty of remodeling with the signing of former Brooklyn Net’s guard Shaun Livingston and former Warrior guard Brandon Rush. While the veteran is a nice addition to a still very young Warriors team, it will be interesting to see how much playing time Barbosa will actually get with two solid backup backcourt options already on the roster.
Over his career, Barbosa owns a solid 15.6 PER while averaging just under 12 points per game. From 2004 to 2010, Barbosa was a solid contributor for the Phoenix Suns, during which the team made the playoffs five times, thanks in part to Barbosa’s 13.4 points per game off the bench. He won the Sixth Man Award during the 2006-2007 season, where he averaged a career high 18.1 points per game and provided the best defensive play of his career.
Over the past three seasons, Barbosa has battled through injuries, missing significant time during all three. Barbosa also played some of 2013 in his home country of Brazil with Esporte Clube Pinheiros. His stint with Esporte seemed to re-energize his game a bit, averaging nearly 16 points a game and over three assists over eight games, and the Warriors are hoping for results like that.
If Barbosa can stay healthy and bounce back to something at least closely resembling the player from his first stint in Phoenix, the Warriors may have netted a great low-risk, high reward player to bolster their bench. What did you think of the signing? Let us know in the comments below.