Warriors forward Kelenna Azubuike exercised his player option for the 2010-11 season, worth $3.36 million.

Azubuike, 26, played in only nine games last season as he spent the majority of the season recovering from a torn patellar tendon in his left knee. In the first nine games of the season, Azubuike was one of the Warriors’ most effective players, averaging 13.9 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 25.7 minutes per game. He was an efficient scorer also, shooting 54.5 percent from the field and 37.0 percent from the 3-point line.

Azubuike started in seven of the nine gamesĀ he played this seasonĀ and will challenge for the starting small forward position with the Warriors in 2010. The other candidates to start as small forward will be Reggie Williams and Corey Maggette, pending any draft picks or free-agent signings at that position.