Ribs yes, Webber no

So shootaround was spent chasing down the latest Chris Webber-returning-to-the-Warriors rumor, which was spawned by Marty McNeal’s report in the Sacramento Bee that Don Nelson had been spotted chowing down at C-Webb’s restaurant.

Nelson copped to noshing at Webber’s place — he pulled in with assistant Larry Riley when a Warriors contingent went up to Sacramento to scout the Memphis Grizzlies, who played the Kings on Jan. 10 and the Warriors the following night. But he wouldn’t comment on any theoretical reunion with Webber, who won the 1993-94 NBA Rookie of the Year award before falling out with Nelson and eventually being dealt to the Washington Bullets.

“You need to talk to Mully about those situations,” Nelson said. “You can talk to me about the ribs. Best in Northern California. Unbelievable, juicy. I got the barbecue and a baked potato and a couple of beers. Or it could have been scotches.”

Was Webber at the grill?

“No, he wasn’t there,” Nelson said. “That’s the other funny thing.”

Heeding Nelson’s instructions, executive vice president Chris Mullin was next. Just before signing point guard C.J. Watson, Mullin said that he was keeping his eyes open in the short-term for a guard and a big man. With Watson working out nicely, that leaves room for a center, no?

“We’re going to look at a lot of different things,” Mullin said. “A big guy with skill, yeah, that’s something we could use.”

At 34 years old and having been out of the league for eight months, does Webber still fit that bill?

“That’s debatable,” Mullin said. “I can’t say what he’s got left. I couldn’t elaborate on that.”

Last January, when Webber was bought out by the Philadelphia 76ers, Nelson said it would probably be a bad idea to have him re-team with the five-time All-Star.

It’s not any better of an idea now. I can’t imagine Webber would be able to keep up with this team’s pace, and he certainly doesn’t want to be stuck in the low post, which is where the Warriors could use the most help from any new big man. I don’t doubt that the Warriors have kicked around Webber’s name in discussing what players might help them, but as shown by Watson signing, the team is more likely to bring in a younger guy on the way up than a veteran with a high probability of getting hurt.

In short, if you want a Nellie/C-Webb reunion, by a Run-TMC DVD.

— Geoff

Geoff Lepper

Geoff Lepper has covered the Warriors since 2005 for the Oakland Tribune and Contra Costa Times. Before that, he covered baseball and college sports for the Marin Independent Journal.

  • EJ

    i’d put webber out on the court over patrick o’bryant. if it can be done, then why not try it? if we did sign webber, we could run the offense through webber at the elbow like they did in sac. that could buy baron some rest. we’ve got good cutters and slashers and webber has been proven to be a great passer out of that high post position.

  • JustPuked

    EJ – I’d rather Perovic or even the Paper Tiger himself, Patrick O’Bryant over Webber. Having seen a bunch of Webber’s games for the Pistons last year, one primary factor stood out.

    He’s got zero speed. Sure, he’s still got the quick hands and for a step or two he can go, but there’s no way he’s up to playing defense the way the Warriors play it. (That’s WHEN they’re actually playing defense which is a totally different thing). That means you can completely forget expecting Webber to hit the boards in any way shape or manner. Even Croshere boards well in his limited run and he’s barely even healthy.

    Chris Webber WAS a highly talented multi skilled superstar but that was then. He’s still a fantastic passer, and has some damn clever high post and low post moves, but he’s going to get you killed on the defensive end. I’m not sure if the added offensive fire power (which is still formidable) is a fair enough trade for the defensive drop off, especially considering adding another volatile personality to the Dubs currently loony bin. Harrington, for all his flaws and multiple unwise defensive fouls, is at least normally in position to pick up those fouls. Webber would be two steps too late on the rotation and we’d all be watching the next Ryan Gomes “Throw it down big man!” in the lane.

    Then again, having Webber mentor Wright…..nah, that’s just crazy talk. Right?

  • petaluman

    I had hopes that both Croshere and Hudson would give us some ‘quality time’ this year. There’s still a chance with AC, but injuries have kept both of these guys on the bench too much to be able to count on. It makes me leery of both Webber and Payton. It’s also hard to judge their conditioning, as neither have played this season.

    On the other hand, unless we find someone in a trade, the free agent/call-up market is not exactly awash in skilled bigs. I doubt we sign Webber, but also doubt we find anyone this year who is any better a match for us, even at his age. Don’t rule out the possibility that BW gets more minutes in the 2nd half of the season. Particularly with the light February schedule and lots of time at home, the team should get a lot more practice time.

    It’s much easier to find guards who can contribute – witness Azubuike. The next roster move we must decide on is the fate of CJ Watson.

    I believe CJ signed his second 10 day contract last Friday, which means it should run out about Monday. He’s mostly been given minutes at the off guard spot, used more as Monta-lite than Baron’s stand-in. This makes some sense to get him into the offense without having to run it, while also getting a chance to D up an NBA PG.

    To stick here, though, I would think he’ll need to show he can manage the offense. We’ve got 1 more game before his contract expires.

    Marcus, do you have any feeling for what his chances of staying are? If we let him go, what is the exact rule on these 10 day signings? Can we wait a few days and call him back up, or is it 2 call-ups per year?

  • EJ

    JustPuked – really? o’bryant over webber? and even perovic? not sure about that. granted, webber is not even close to the player he was 4 years ago, but he can shoot consistently from 15 feet, take up room in the low block, and distribute and handle the ball better than any of the other guys. we’d only need him for 15 minutes per on the floor.

    i don’t think this would be like the giants signing old guys like aurilia and dave roberts to depend on for the bulk of the team’s production. webber could simply fill in some holes. chemistry would be an issue, though. as long as he understands his role on the team, i think picking him wouldn’t be such a bad thing.

  • JustPuked

    Okay, I went a little overboard with the sarcasm there, lol! I do see the upside of Webber, I really do. I just don’t trust his character and effort. If he’s not happy we know he has no problem pouting. It’s not like Nelson and Webber are bosom buddies. It would only take a little dissention to blow up all over again. Webber/Nelson fracked up our last play-off team. Call me gun shy, I just don’t want to risk ANOTHER young playoff team to that particular combustible combination.

  • JustPuked


    From Larry Coon’s Salary Cap FAQ:

    65. What is a 10-day contract?

    A 10-day contract is just that, a player contract which lasts ten days (or three games, whichever comes later). A team may sign a player to two 10-day contracts in one season (they may or may not be consecutive). After the second 10-day contract, the team can only retain the player by signing him for the remainder of the season. A team can’t have more 10-day contracts than they have players on their Inactive List. Ten-day contracts are available to be used starting January 5 (or the first business day thereafter) each season.

  • JustPuked

    A Reitman analysis on the Aftereffects of a Nellie/Webber Reunion:

    Nelson: The “City” is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions.
    Mullin: What do you mean, “biblical”?
    Cohen: What he means is Old Testament, Mr. Mullin, real wrath-of-God type stuff.
    Nelson: Exactly.
    Cohen: Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies. Rivers and seas boiling.
    Webber: Forty years of darkness. Earthquakes, volcanoes…
    Spreewell: The dead rising from the grave.
    Nelson: Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together – mass hysteria

    We’re talking Stay Puff Marshmallow Man on a Cloverfield Rampage type stuff.

  • BayArea Bob

    I have a hard time believing he was there just to eat. By the way, Jan 10th was the same day Nellie was too “busy” to do the Nellie Show on KNBR(4:30pm) Keith Smart took his place.. a week later he told Ralph&Tom he was working on something that day, but didn’t want to reveal it. I doubt eating ribs or watching the Kings/Grizz game(7pm start) was the real reason he flaked on Ralph&Tom. Nellie lies sometimes, and I don’t mind if he wants to keep his cards close to his chest.

  • Valr

    Good job, BayAreaBob! I remember that interview but didn’t make the connection.

    If Webber is in playing shape, why not? I know a lot of fans have not forgiven him but really, c’mon, after all these years?
    At the very least, it’s good to know that Mullin&Nellie are not leaving any stones unturned.
    Another possibility, could they have been running interference against LA getting CWebb?

  • Chris Mullin

    My name is Chris Mullin and I’m a punk-a-holic.

  • Steven Bernard

    Please, please no Chris Webber. He is a loser at every level he has ever played on. He has no knees, no movement and wrecked the Warriors once before.

    What are the Warriors thinking?

    NO NO A Thousand times No to Chris Webber.