The Heat Is on for Warriors' Myers, Lacob in Free Agency

The next week for the Warriors comes down the persuasion and maneuverability of president/general manager Bob Myers and the heights to which CEO Joe Lacob will lift his checkbook.

Kevin Durant did his part, vacating his seat at the table surrounded by free agents who are 18 days away from helping the Warriors win their second championship in three seasons.

Stephen Curry will do his part, which is to sign a contract of "super max" proportions once it is placed before him.

That leaves eight players, from tenured key components like Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston; significant veterans, such as David West and JaVale McGee and Zaza Pachulia and Matt Barnes, who played their part this season; and pups that grew in the culture, like Ian Clark and James Michael McAdoo.

When the clock strikes 9:01 Friday night, 12:01 Saturday morning in the NBA's New York headquarters, the table will belong to Myers and Lacob.

The final voices of the Warriors are embarking the most challenging six days of their time running the franchise. Tougher than last summer, when they had a single target, Durant, and he bought in. Far tougher than 2015, when they Warriors were coming off their first championship in 40 years with most key players under contract; they could even afford to gamble in the draft, selecting Kevon Looney. Infinitely tougher than 2014, when they were not yet fully formed and simply needed a coach to see the ceiling and apply the finishing touches.

Those were the days, eh? The Warriors, after so many years of stumbling in place, if not tripping while going backward, were steady and sturdy and finally had a tight grip of the rock we know as the NBA.

Now, as they sit atop the rock, kicking and flicking all others to parts unknown, it's about assembling a roster that can keep them a level of two above the rest. That is, if you listen to any GM in the league, as exceedingly difficult as it sounds. Oddly enough, it's slightly easier to get to the top than it is to stay there.

The brain trust definitely wants Iguodala to return, and they surely would like to have Livingston back on the roster. There is mutual interest in David West if he wants to continue playing, and he's leaning that way.

It would be quite the surprise if Pachulia or Clark or McGee or Barnes were to return. They've already declined the $1.7 million qualifying offer to McAdoo, making him an unrestricted free agent.

Which leaves it up to Myers and his staff to fill out the roster around the core of Draymond Green, Klay Thompson, Curry and Durant.

It will be a big blow should Livingston walk, an even bigger blow if Iguodala walks. has confirmed reports that have Iguodala meeting with the Spurs and Kings in the first 24 hours of free agency, with at least one other team lurking behind him.

If Iguodala and Livingston walk -- though it's not likely -- Myers will have to catch his breath and roll up his sleeves.

That's what he does best. Myers jumped out of the player agent business to take over the player personnel department and he has been splendid. He has won two NBA Executive of the Year awards -- one more than either Pat Riley or Danny Ainge and precisely as many as Jerry West.

Myers deserves to be trusted, at least until he fails.

Which brings us to Lacob, who also has a high success rate -- but is coming off a significant loss with West leaving for the Clippers.

Lacob has a sickness insofar as losing makes him ill. He doesn't like losing negotiations, but he has shown he'll grit his teeth if that's what it takes to keep the Warriors winning. There has been, so far, no sign that he will make a decision based on saving dollars.

That could change, but probably won't. Even though he's not likely to throw a three-year, $54 million deal at Iguodala -- even if the market is set there. Iguodala is the player who will command the most, which makes him the biggest test case for Lacob.

If Myers meets his standards between July 1 and July 6, the Warriors will once again present the best roster in the league.

If Lacob stays true to form, he'll allow it.

No matter how the next few days unfold, they both will feel more fatigue than they've felt at any time with the franchise.

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