Golden State Warriors sign Damion Lee to two-way contract

The Golden State Warriors have officially announced the signing of former Atlanta Hawks guard Damion Lee to a two-way contract, one of two spots Golden State has available.

General manager Bob Myers has said the club is still figuring out exactly how to use those two-way spots most effectively. The Warriors have been looking to get younger and more athletic at the wing, while replacing some of the big men that numbered six on last year’s NBA-title roster.

Though Lee, 25, comes with an injury history — a pair of ACL injuries and a broken hand — Lee is exactly that type of player, and it doesn’t hurt that the 6-foot-6 guard is also engaged to Stephen Curry’s sister, Sydel.

Lee spent much of last season in Santa Cruz, with the Warriors’ G-League affiliate, before signing with the Hawks in March after completing two consecutive 10-day contracts. With Atlanta, Lee averaged 10.7 points and 4.7 rebounds in 15 games, during which he played an average of 26.9 minutes.

He also played for the USA Basketball World Cup qualifying team that played two exhibition games in Santa Cruz on Feb. 23 and 26, recording 7 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists in 33 minutes against Cuba and Puerto Rico.

A Baltimore native, Lee was the Colonial Athletic Association Rookie of the Year for Drexel in 2011-12, and was second-team all-conference as a sophomore. In a game against Arizona in his third season, he tore his ACL and MCL, and missed the rest of that year. When he finally was able to play his redshirt junior year, he fractured his right hand against Northeastern, prematurely ending his season. He had averaged 6.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 27 games, and hit 88.7 percent of his free throws, 14th in the nation. Even playing a shortened season, he was one vote shy of winning the CAA Player of the Year.

He transferred to Louisville for his senior year under Rick Pitino, after being heavily courted by Arizona, Gonzaga, Marquette and Maryland. He was named to the midseason watch list for the Naismith Trophy, before the Cardinals were embroiled in an escort sex scandal investigation that put an end to their postseason hopes.

Undrafted out of Louisville, he played for the Miami Heat in the 2016 Summer League, then signed with the Boston Celtics in September of 2016, before being waived after two preseason games. He then went to the Maine Red Claws, but was waived in January of 2017 after suffering a torn ACL in his other knee. In 16 games, he averaged 17.8 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.1 steals in 34 minutes.

In August, Lee was a part of a three-team trade in which his rights were acquired by the Santa Cruz Warriors.

Per NBA rules, teams are permitted to sign two players to two-way contracts in addition to the 15-man regular-season roster.Players signed to two-way deals can accrue no more than 45 days of service time with their NBA club during the regular season. The Warriors converted two-way player Quinn Cook to a full-time Warrior with a guaranteed contract last season.

Ryan Gorcey
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Ryan Gorcey

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