Who Gets the Rock in the Fourth?

(Note: We’ve had some technical issues with our blog. Somehow, the last post, and all the comments, disappeared. The Raiders blog is having even more problems. I am recreating the post for those who didn’t see it. For those who did, there will be some differences as I didn’t have it saved anywhere).

After watching the Hawks game, and how Crawford closed it out efficiently, I was thinking the Warriors will have a dilemma on their hands. Who are they going to designate the go-to guy.
Before I break down the options, I must say that I go into this with the belief that the closer-by-committee thing doesn’t work in basketball. In the NBA, you need to have the one guy who is THAT GUY. No matter who is rolling. No matter how bad he’s been playing. He gets the rock. Obviously, it won’t be 100 percent of the time. But for the most part, I believe, you need a guy who you go-to down the stretch, who has the skills to make something happen for himself and others, and even after the plans go awry. You win and lose with him. Doesn’t mean he has to take the shot, but he needs to be involved, the center of what happens down the stretch. Hopefully, this guy is good enough to get it done. Because if you don’t have that guy in this league, you’re not a very good team. Or if you have the wrong kind of guy in that position, you’re not a very good team.
The Warriors had that guy in Baron, now they need to deem someone his successor. So, who would you give that job, too. The options:

Pros: His midrange is money and he’s a good 3-point shooter when he gets a good look. He can post-up, which gives you another option. He is a pretty good passer for his position, so you can have faith he can set up a score for someone else. He also has experience hitting clutch shots, the often others created them for him. He’s also a good free throw shooter.
He isn’t a good ball-handler and he’s prone to make poor decisions, so he’s a high-risk for a turnover.

Pros: Because of his superior athleticism and midrange jumper, he is sometimes impossible to guard. He’s excellent at finishing his drives and he’s a solid free throw shooter. He has a scoring knack, so he can find multiple ways to put the ball in the hole – jumper, drive, offensive rebound, finishing, pull-up, free throws, fast break. Also, Monta has a killer instinct. He plays aggressive, determined and hungry.
Cons: He’s handles, though improved, still limit his ability to improvise. His court vision is limited and his passing, though improved, makes you wonder if he can consistently make plays for others. He didn’t shoot the 3-pointer well, which means you’re in trouble if you need one. Of course, all this is based on last season and it doesn’t take into consideration any improvements he may have made. With his history, it’s highly likely he’s gotten better.


Pros: Because of his excellent ball-handling ability, he can create easily for himself and others off the dribble. Can get to anywhere on the floor. Can knock down any shot on the floor. Can knock down different types of shots, especially difficult ones. His midrange is water and he has 3-point range. Really good free throw shooter. Underrated passer.
Cons: Settles for tough shots too much and takes too many unnecessary 3-pointers. Was once an explosive athlete but doesn’t finish above the rim much anymore. Isn’t as good finishing with contact as you’d like.

Pros: Excellent at getting to the basket and the free throw line, which is the kind of high-percentage opportunity you want down the stretch. Good free throw shooter. He has a nice midrange jumper and the size to post up. Handles are good enough to get to where he needs to go. Can stick a 3-pointer when he gets a good look.
Cons: Doesn’t pass well, nor does he see the floor well. Prone to offensive fouls because of his head-down drives. Decision making can be suspect (i.e., takes a jumper over a smaller defender, rushes the shot when running clock is best, etc.)

So, who gets your vote.

Marcus Thompson

  • Willy

    Thanks for the repost. I tried to read it for several days and couldn’t get to it.

    I’ll take the easy way out and say that I’ll give the team some time together as a unit before I decide who that guy is going to be.

  • Earl monroe

    Definitely not Jackson, last night was a case in point, he almost shot the warriors out of the game by himself, his passing is overrated as is his handle.
    There was no need for that game to get as close as it did.
    He continues to stop the ball flow and because he does not jump, cannot get to some of the rebounds he should get to.

    For me it would be Ellis, Crawford, Maggette and even Watson before Jackson.

    Jackson is now a role player.

  • kana


    Appreciate your efforts, but would you please have the editorial staff remove Al Harrington from your masthead…it’s bad juju.



  • kshaq

    Not Jackson at all. Agree with Monroe there. Yesterday, when Jackson let the ball out of his hands, for Jamal to handle it, the Warriors got some baskets. The reason why Jackson was so successful last year was the fact that he didn’t get to handle the ball. And that is something he has to understand. I know he’s got that sense of responsibility over his shoulders to carry the team. However, when he handles the ball, it hurts the team more than ever. Like Earl Monroe said above, he almost cost us the game last night with three questionable shot selection and turnovers. So yeah..I would go with Jamal, or look for Jamal to create.

  • wowiorrs

    I think it depends. If we need to knock down threes because were down so much it cant be monta or maggette, jackson when he feels it is ideal otherwise crawford. if its a tight game no question monta pick and roll with beans or just iso himself. if we have a lead its also monta bcuz he’ll create openings for others

  • MountainJim

    It has to be Monta or Crawford, because no one else will ever get it right. That’s not to say they will, but they can get themselves open and force a defense to react, and might even deliver a pass to the guy left open when that happens.

    But I had to laugh when you said if you don’t have that guy you aren’t a very good team. Is the converse true? This isn’t a very good team, so maybe we don’t have that guy.

  • EJ

    i’d much rather keep the ball in crawford’s hands. considering how prone he is to drawing contact on his jumper, that’s a huge bonus, especially when’s he hitting close to 90% at the line. in a last shot situation, i like the prospects of an iso of crawford and turiaf for a pick and roll. they’ve got some chemistry going on. turiaf has got great hands, can really leap, and can knock down free throws.

    and yes, please take down teenage mutant ninja al from the banner. lol.

  • DW

    Ellis is the only that at the end of the day you wouldn’t second guess taking the shot. Everyone else you would wonder why they didn’t find Monta on the floor if they missed.

  • Chirs

    I want a player that can “create his own shot” to make big baskets in the 4th.

    As we stand now, the only players that can “create their own shots” on the team are: Corey Maggette and Jamal Crawford.

    Belinelli is on his way there but as of yet, he’s a little too “scared” to drive the ball to the basket (typical of European players). Marco has to get toughter in this regard, he has the abillity to take people of the dribble.

    Stephen Jackson can take and make big shots, no question. I would put him on that list for that reason alone. But he cannot “create his own shot” because he can’t dribble and he really cannot finish after penetrating.

    So as of riht now, I want guys who can drive to the basket and get to the free throw line to close out games for our young Golden State squad.

    The only guys who can do that are Corey Maggette and Jamal Crawford. When Monta Ellis gets back, he will complete that trio of players that I want to take shots in the 4th.

    Drive to the basket and get to the free throw line, put the other team in foul trouble in the 4th, let other teams “shit their pants” because they are scared to put the Warriors “in the bonus”.

    Why do WE always have to be the ones in the 4th quarter, “shitting our pants” because the other team is already in the bonus.

  • AS

    I like the Monta/Crawford combination. They can create for an open Jax-3 or a Maggette-drive.

  • Dave

    Monte or Crawford in the 4th, because you have to have a threat to take it to the hole. All of these guys tend to haul up a long shot, we still need a low post threat.
    Re: Midterm Grades for Warriors, you forgot to give an “F” grade to Rowell for handling BD and Mullin, moves that turned a playoff potential team back into a doormat. Also RE: It’s Not A Lost Season, even with Ellis coming back, he doesn’t change who the team is because he is another guard. This club will not improve until they stress defense and rebounding, and actually play bigger up front.(IMHO)

  • Chirs

    “Earl Monroe”…………….you’re right!

    Jackson is a “role player” now.

    His only “role” is to make certain he turns the ball over as many times as possible in a matter of 48 minutes.

    Thank you again, “Earl Monroe” for blessing us with your “pearls of wisdom.”

    I think Earl Monroe is a Berkeley college professor. His leftist statements makes me think he has a degree in Liberal Arts.

    What would we do without “Earl Monroe’s” intelligent commentary?………..You are, without question, the smartest man on here, “Earl Monroe” We should all listen to you and agree with you.

    Tell you what,……….why don’t you pack your shit and move back to D.C. where “Earl Monroe” is regarded as “God”.

  • Marcus, just say what’s on your mind:

    We got a bunch of balhhog wings.

  • Warrior Matt

    Generally I agree but what about the Pistons? They won a championship with neither Rip, Chauncey or Wallace being the “go to guy”.

    Offensively it’s a pretty interesting combination, imagine those 4 closing games (It’s Nelson so it doesn’t matter that they all play the same position) he will probably add Morrow hanging out in a corner. You can’t double any of them and you can’t play zone. Of course if they miss they there is no way they stop the other team. Probably won’t work for a true winning team but it should make for a really fun trip to the lottery. You can move the pieces that don’t fit in the off season.

  • It all depends on what we need at the time..If we need a 3 then Crawford can get his own shot or set-up Jackson with a pass. If we are tied or one down then I would go with Monta or Maggette, Monta can pull up from anyplace on the court and knock down a shot. Maggette can go low and get a foul call and make free throws for a win.

  • Crawford, Monta, Jackson, Maggette in that order.

    Crawford – clutch shooter, can create for others, best passing

    Monta – clutch midrange shooter, can create for others, decent passing

    Jackson – clutch spot-up shooter

    Maggette – fouls don’t get called at the end of the game

  • chikago


  • sad jose

    1. monta

    2. jackson