The Thompson debate doesn't stop with the defensive element, of course. On the financial front, landing Love would eventually require giving him a max contract that would likely start at approximately $19 million annually (he has indicated he'll opt out of his current deal and become a free agent next summer).
Meanwhile, Thompson's agent, Bill Duffy, has been seeking a max deal in extension talks with the Warriors as well. And while Golden State would surely prefer that the stance eventually softens and leads to a more palatable deal, the fact that he is younger means a max for Thompson would start at $15.7 million and still allow for more flexibility in the Warriors' future than a Love deal.
A max extension for Thompson, on top of re-signing Love at max should they trade David Lee for him, could push their salaries into the $80 million-plus range, even after sending Lee's $15 million salary out in the deal. That could complicate matters dramatically, depending on the position of Warriors ownership toward the luxury tax.
Thompson is an elite shooter and projects as an above-average defender in time. If Gordon Hayward is worth the max, it's pretty easy to make the argument Thompson is. But Hayward is more versatile and can create more off the dribble. Thompson never really took that step last season and there's concern over making a major investment in a player that can't produce on his own with the ball.
But either way, if the Warriors get Love and keep Thompson, they're looking at a major tax bill unless they move someone like Andre Iguodala or Andrew Bogut.
Get paid kid!