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Postgame Tidbits (at Sacramento)

* The Warriors could win their fourth straight game on Wednesday vs. Minnesota. Then if they could win two of the last four (vs. Houston, at Utah on a back-to-back, vs. San Antonio, at Phoenix), that would make them 6-2 over the final eight games. That’s just good enough for the franchise to manufacture hope heading into next season. If that happens, be prepared to hear “we won 6 of 8 down the stretch” a million times this offseason.

* C.J. Watson is such a good teammate. He missed a break-away dunk on Friday just so rookie Anthony Randolph wouldn’t be alone.

Watson: “I wanted to give everyone a laugh at the arena.”

Friday vs. New Orleans, Randolph missed an open dunk late in the game. He said the defender who ran by him made brushed against his foot.

Randolph on Friday: “They should’ve called a foul. He threw my whole equilibrium off.”

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Sunday, there was no one in sight for Watson’s dunk attempt. With just over six minutes left in the second quarter, he picked up a loose ball and headed the other way. He was all alone. He took off and cocked it waaaaaaay back for a tomahawk dunk with the right hand. But it came banked off the back rim and sailed to halfcourt.

Watson, with a beaming smile: “I was up high enough. I just tried to dunk it too hard.”

* Check out this quote from Kings coach Kenny Nat. Hilarious.

“Well, needless to say, we came out with no energy and no effort — so did they.”

* So, the backcourt for next year, according to Nellie, is Ellis and Jackson. The reason Crawford needs to go, according to Nellie, is that both Ellis and Jackson are big-minute guys and Crawford is too good and too expensive to play behind them. OK. I get that.
But after the last two games, I’m not so much worried about Crawford as I am about Anthony Morrow. This dude has to get consistent minutes next year. He’s just too good a shooter (and OK enough in other areas) to sit on the bench. If Crawford is gone, that means Morrow backs up Jax. Can Nellie be counted on to keep Jax’s minutes down to 30-35 to free up minutes for Morrow? Or will Morrow wind up being the odd man out as we question why he isn’t playing?

* Another point made abundantly clear of late: Randolph is a PF. None of that next-Billy Owens stuff. The Warriors are set at SF (Azubuike and Maggette, and inevitably Jax). Plus Randolph is better at PF, now and, I say, in the future. The advantage he gets from being tall and handling the ball on the perimeter is smaller than the advantage you get from having his length and defensive tenacity inside.
He was 4-for-14 on Sunday, but he had 13 rebounds, four steals and two blocks. That’s what the Warriors need from the PF position. If he ends up developing a low-post game, he’d be the ideal PF. For now, they need to be happy with the presence he brings on defense. Who else is going to commit the hard foul? sell out to protect the rim? mix it up against bigger defenders? dunk on someone and scowl at them as he walks down court?
That’s what the Warriors need, not another big man running the offense and taking 20-footers.

*The Warriors had seven players available for the second consecutive game. And, once again, one of those seven played while under the weather. Friday, it was Jamal Crawford. Sunday, it was Ronny Turiaf. He wound up playing 27 minutes, totaling seven points, four rebounds and three blocks.
About midway through the first quarter he tugged his jersey while walking to the offensive end, a gesture to the bench that he needed a breather. C.J. Watson checked into the scorer’s table – but came in for Morrow.
He didn’t come out until 1:15 left in the first. He sat out the entire second quarter. The Warriors were uncertain if Turiaf would be able to go the second half. But he gutted out all 12 minutes of the third quarter and the three-and-a-half minutes down the stretch.

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Nellie: “Ronny Turiaf was ill and we did not know if he could play the second half. I told him to give it a try and see how he felt. I thought he was doing really well not being 100 percent. So I left him in almost the whole quarter and kind of tricked him.”

Marcus Thompson

  • MountainJim

    Down the stretch? That’s like saying hey, the Dow was up 50 after seven straight days of 300-500 point losses. Woohoo!

    Yeah, they’ll say it and some fool will buy it.

  • gkingus

    As long as the Knicks or Raptors don’t jump ahead of us in the lottery.

  • Scotty

    I don’t think we need to worry about the 6-2 talk. They’ll beat Minnesota Wednesday, but will be lucky to even take one of those final 4 games.

    We re-upped our tickets today. As much as I despise all the front office drama, I really like all these players.

  • Trade Jackson

    scotty how much did it cost you? were are tour seats?

  • Twinkie defense

    C’mon Marcus, Jack is not gonna be the Warriors’ starting 2-guard next season, don’t fall for that from Nellie again… he just needs to say that to make it easier to get Crawford outta town.

    Monta Ellis is the Warriors 2-guard.

  • Tom in VancouverUSA

    If Morrow is the backup to Jax, where does that leave Marco Bellinelli? He has shown considerable growth this year in shooting, passing, and, most important, tenacious defense. Does he have to fight with CJW for time as the backup point? One of the group of CJW, Marco or possibly Morrow will have to be sent away in a trade before next season to clear the log jam at the guard position. There’s enough trade value there to pick up a better backup 4/5 player than Kurz.

  • Wilson

    In my opinion, the Warriors have 10 good players. Biedrins/Turiaf, Randolph/Wright, Azubuike/Morrow, Jax/Marco, plus Monta and Maggette.

    We all know that we have two needs: a true point guard and an inside bruiser, either center or power forward. Against most teams, Randolph would be an outstanding four. Against a team whose power forward can use his bulk to overpower Randolph, we need a big strong guy; if he’s a center, Turiaf could slide over to the four. I guess if Maggette stays, he might be able to fulfill that role. Regardless, I’d be surprised if the Warriors don’t sign a solid true point guard, either through the draft or by trade.

    I agree with Marcus about Morrow needing to play. In fact, I believe that he’ll be a perennial starter and 20 point scorer either next year or the year after. He’s smart and like Monta will get better every year.

    So many injuries this year. It tells you how important depth is on a team and while 10-11 really good players may seem like overkill, it isn’t if Nellie spreads out the minutes. I can dream, can’t I?

  • http://chriscohansucks.blogspot.com/ Chris Cohan

    Keepers stop at Monta, Morrow, Wright, Randolph, Biedrins, Turiaf.

    That’s all.

  • petaluman

    Marcus,
    My read on the Crawford situation is somewhat different. It’s his choice to opt out or not. However, if he doesn’t, he becomes a 10M expiring contract in 2010, ‘the year of the FA’. All our other big contracts have several more years attached, so any significant trade we make in the next 2 years would probably involve him.

    However, until then Nelson will play the line-up he thinks has the best chance to win. If Randolph does indeed stay at 4, he’ll be competing with Wright for minutes. That leaves Ellis, Jackson, Crawford, and Maggette filling most of the 1-3 minutes. Jamal may not get 40 mpg, but he’ll probably play starter-type minutes between PG and SG.

    It has undeniably been exciting following Morrow’s progress this year, but his showing in these last games will be crucial in his making a case for more action next year. We don’t play the Kings every day!

    At this point, I think Wright has a more developed low post game than Randolph. However, he’s got to stay healthy to compete. Ideally, to play them at the same time, we’d need at least one of them to be effective on the perimeter on offense and one on defense. It doesn’t have to be the same guy.

  • haastheman

    I think right now randolph is a four, but as the game continues to slow down for him, he will be a three. Eventually, maybe two or three years down the line, the game will start to fell like it did for him in summer league. He can handle the ball, and he’s such a good shot blocker, that even if a 3 takes him off the dribble, he can still block it. Randolph at the three gives the warriors height and athletisism. He may never be big enough to play the four, but the game will slow down for him.

  • jaysohn

    These lasts few weeks has been critical to show that Morrow and Randolph are the real keepers out of the young guys. Both guys play hard and really compete on every play. It will be key for the Warriors to find a way to move at least one of their high priced vets, either Crawford or Maggette, during the offseason. They may have to include Wright, Belinelli or Azubuike for another team to bite. I like Wright but Randolph brings more to the table now and has the greater upside. The Warriors need another big body besides Turiaf to compliment Randolph and Beidrins in order to play a somewhat more traditional style. It might be an interesting off season.

  • blah2u

    goodness for the sake of all long terms fans involved, let’s then hope that they go 3-5. i rather see a revolt from fans and players to kick owners/mgmts arses to get us a playoff bound team by making some offseason deals rather than to suffer through another season of what ifs, woulda, coulda, shoulda and if onlys.

    hate to say it bc he has been giving his all, but jax needs to go. the team doesn’t develop with him in the line up and nellie relies on him too much. morrow said it best after the NO win. “we trusted each other and shared the ball more…”

  • Lufty455

    Yes,,,, they can fire Nelson and Rowell. Entice Mullie to stay and be GM again. Mullie hires Keith Smart as the coach. Trade JAX and Mags or Craw for a point guard or maybe sign Andre Miller or draft a PG. Pick-up Carlos Boozer as FA.
    Keeper:
    PG – Ellis/Miller or Draft
    SG – Morrow/Crawford
    SF – JAX or Randolph/Azibuike
    PF – Boozer/Wright
    C – Beidrins/Turiaf

    Bench: Belinelli, Davidson, FA or Draft

  • blah

    Jayson, I agree with your logic about adding one more Big. How about……We bring back DREW GOODEN to the Bay Area…. were he belongs?

    Gooden will be an unrestricted FA this summer. If we have the cash I’d like to see the W’s make a pitch. Not a super star, but a solid big man the could add some major value to the team and balance things out.

    If we lose Crawford, I’d like to see Tyreke Evan’s in our Jersey. Again adding some balance to the team.

    Ideally I think Griffin would be perfecft for the dubs but, baring a trade is less than a 5% chance.

  • petaluman

    If Jamal doesn’t opt out, we’ll be over the cap and restricted to a maximum offer of the MLE to any FAs. Usually, almost all the teams are over the cap, as well. In a down year, I wonder how many teams will use their full MLE?

  • justafan

    It starts at the top so BOYCOTT the Warriors the rest of this season and next and every year until Chris Cohan sells the team.

  • notanelsonfan

    ESPN Mock draft has W’s picking PG Willie Warren. He got great reviews on his game. I know he is a rookie, but again which veteran PG like Nash will wanna sign with such a young W team?

    I say get rid of Mags, unless coaching can MAKE him play his strongest game, which is attacking the basket. If not then trade him because he surely can’t pass the ball or defend well.

    I like MB, but get a bad feeling that he won’t get much playing time the way Morrow has been playing/scoring.

    Jax? When he passes the ball and really plays like a leader should then obviously keep him. But he just doesn’t seem to fit with our team.

    Wright? Lets hope this shoulder thing is not a on going problem.

    Too many guards on this team not enough playing time. Sure gonna be interesting who’s gonna stay and who’s out the door.

  • http://www.scottcelestre.com Squall

    If Morrow NEEDS to back up Jax at the 2 (which I agree he does) where does that leave Marco?

    If Randolph truely is a 4 (which he is) how does Nellie change his style to incorporate a non-shooting threat 4?

  • Optimus Prime

    I really like this team. They are young and are really deep. having said that Im not sure which way to go in the draft.

    Nellie say they need to add another rebounder, but I wouldnt was another PF to take mins away from Wright or Randolph or another C who will not play much behind Andris and Turiaf. We all know they dont need another guard and the SF looks loched up with Azubuke and Magette. I dont agree with adding another PG. I like Watcon in the backup role to Monte. He is more of a tradition pg and despite what Nellie says I dont think Crawford will opt out of his deal.

    Should be interesting offseason, but I think things will look nice if they bring most of these pieces back.

  • Optimus Prime

    The PG-Monte experiment just may work afterall especially with Jax being able to bring the ball up.

  • Tim1234

    Wright is a keeper? One good game in two years? Trade him and Bellinelli, Maggetti and Crawford for Baron and the team is already better.

  • ifthatdontsayitall

    Nellie: “Ronny Turiaf was ill and we did not know if he could play the second half. I told him to give it a try and see how he felt. I thought he was doing really well not being 100 percent. So I left him in almost the whole quarter and kind of tricked him.”

    Nice. Our only big left and the man who had open heart surgery asks for a blow and Nellie won’t sub.

    Nellie is officially out of his effin mind!

  • OliverStone

    Petaluman #9…

    Just for the sake of accuracy…if Crawford doesn’t opt out…his contract doesn’t expire until 2010/11… the year after “the year of the FA”…carry on

    http://hoopshype.com/salaries/golden_state.htm

  • Petaluman

    OStone,
    Sorry if I wasn’t clear – he will be an expiring contract that year. This makes him valuable in a sign-and-trade. Remember, Gasol wasn’t really traded for “nothing”. Most of his salary was offset by an expiring Kwame Brown. Ditto KG and Ratliff.

    I know some teams are trying clear cap, so they can try to sign a big name outright. However, under the CBA, the team with Bird rights will always be able to offer more. That’s why the most desirable players usually end up staying put or being in a s&t.

  • Scott

    Justafan,

    Get a f*cking life and stop with your boycott crap. We all get the point after the 100th time you written that. Why not suggest we all attend games and hold our breath until they sell the team.

  • Scotty

    For real. I’m so tired of reading Justafan’s boycott comments on every Warrior blog I visit.

    Trade Jackson (definitely not a fan of your screen name btw),

    My seats are in section 123, they’re part of the cheapest seats in the lower level. They went up to $50/ticket this season from $38 the previous two I had them. They dropped back down to $38 for the upcoming season though. I guess I have Monta and his moped to thank for the reduction in price. Works out to $1,634 a ticket when you include the 2 preseason games they make you buy (unfortunately) along with the 41 regular season games.

  • Scotty

    Marcus,

    Speaking of Monta, any update on his status for the game tomorrow?

  • Riich W

    The Warriors need a PG for next season, they need to get off of this fixiation of trying to convert shooting guards to 1′s. Delson tried DeMarcus Nelson at the begining of the season, contemplated Jack at the position, then it was CJ Watson, and now that Monta’s back they are trying to convert him to a 1. Hey, go out and get a guy who can play the position, make a deal, sigh a free agent. The Warriors have suffered all year because BD wasn’t there to make timely passes. They Warriors couldn’t have won even if they were healthy. They have a bad mix of players, too many combo guards, too many guys playing out of position.

  • Chris

    Forget about drafting rookies……..we don’t have the scouting, the organization or the management to do that.

    We need someone who is already established in the league, a super star caliber player; but more importantly a player who is not afraid to take the game over in the 4th quarter.

    Our guys are too scared in the 4th quarter and they are not aggressive at all.

    Forget rookies……..we have 0 luck in shit like that……..Portland, New Orleans….these teams lucked out with their rookies over the past 5 years, remember New Orleans drafted Paul and West…..both turned out to be money makers. Every young guy Portland drafted turned out to be a gem.

    We haven’t had such luck.

    Forget Griffin and all this talk of more rookies. We need guys like Joe Johnson, Dirk Nowitzki, Michael Redd, A’mare Stoudemire, Carmello Anthony…….these are the directions we should be looking.

    There is no star PG that’s available that would make any difference on our team. We would need somebody like Deron Williams or Chris Paul to improve this sorry Golden State squad,…..Hinrich, an aging Nash, an aging Kidd won’t do shit for us.

  • OptimusPrime

    How much would it suck if Sacramento ends up with Blake.

  • justafan

    Scott, Scotty, Your the reason Chris puts out suck BS you pay him!

  • Scotty

    Did not see that response coming from Justafan. Always keeping us on our toes.

    do you know the difference between your and you’re? Please tell me I’m not in a quasi-online beef with a 3rd grader. That’s all I ask.

  • http://chriscohansucks.blogspot.com/ Chris Cohan

    Ah, the Warrrios PR morons have arrived to scold the (reformed) paying customers…

  • justafan

    Scotty, If you are polite I will be as well and oh so sorry… I did mean “You’re”

  • blah

    Very few things are more pathetic than a guy who really thinks he’s creating a mutiny through blogging. Except, for a guy who’s life is dedicated to convincing fans that his own team sucks through excessive effort shown on his own website. Must be really fulfilling. It’s psychotic obsessment. Chris Cohan and Justafan, Give it up and grow up.

  • blah

    JUSTA – you pay him too even if you watch the games on TV. And if your not watching the games on TV and still posting on this site, then your have REAL mental issues as said previously.

    Chris Cohan – If the team really sucks that bad why do you love it so much? Really? I bet you also like it when I tell you your a loser, and pathetic.

    You’re both F-ing insane and frankly disturbing.

  • justafan

    Blah Are you getting paid to flame me? Which part of the pr dept do you work for? RR put you up to this? hahahaha Tool… I hope you are part of the coming Purge.

  • C.J.

    Losing to Minnesota at home, even in a meaningless game is inexcusable.

    I think it is proof positive that our young guys, while talented, just do not have the NBA ability to compete.

    Minnesota’s role players have always killed us, especially Craig Smith. Telfair was able to get to the basket. Bobby Brown, how did we miss out on him? He was a UFA and was traded from Sacramento in that Nocioni 3 team deal. He lit us up in that 4th quarter.

    I can’t believe we lost.

    We even had Jamal playing for most of the 4th quarter. You would think his intellligent, veteran presence alone would guide the younger players a little bit in the 4th.

    Anthony Randolph was up to his usual stupid turnovers, he made some nice cuts getting open, received some nice interior passes and finsihed a couple of plays, but he has a long way to go. He is nowhere near in the ballpark of OJ Mayo, Derrick Rose, Marc Gasol, Kevin Love or Brook Lopez………..not even close. He’s energetic and athletic but completely stupid in basketball IQ.

    Anthony Randolph fouls jump shooters 20 feet away from the basket because he tries to block every single shot any player throws up there.

    In this regard, Brandan Wright is much further developed offensively and defensively than Randolph.

    If we had to get rid of Wright or Randolph to acquire a big name,………..I would rather part with Randolph and take my chances with a North Carolina product.

    It’s just pathetic.

    CJ pushes the ball up court, stops at the 3 point line and dishes to Biedrins running the wing. Biedrins stops dead in his tracks and that whole possession crumbles. I like CJ a lot, but he has to learn how to pass the ball to the right people at the right time. I’ve seen CJ give Biedrins the ball in the backcourt before, making Biedrins bring the ball up. Sometimes I wonder where CJ’s head is. But I like his confidence in the 4th. He’s not scared to take shots in the 4th and as a back up PG, I think he fulfills the role pretty well.

    I’m just splitting hairs at this point because this team flat out is one of the most terrible teams in the league!

  • Derek

    This teams stinks so bad that I’m not even excited about next year……….what is there to get excited about?……..We won’t end up with any good players in the position that we will be drafting.

    Barring a blockbuster trade, we will continue to be a bad team next year.

    I mean we put out most of our young future against Minnesota on our home court and got our hats handed to us by Minnesota…………that should tell you guys something……we had Morrow, Randolph, Watson…..all those guys out there with veterans Biedrins, Azubuike and Crawford and could not get the job done on our homecourt against the T-Wolves??????……Bad sign……bad sign……this team is very bad.

  • Derek

    This is, without question, one of the worst Warrior squads since St. Jean/Carlesimo, St. Jean/Cowens, St. Jean/Mussellman, Mullin/Montgomery………….

    These guys should be ashamed of themselves.

    The Harrington trade didn’t help shit…………Harrington is a good NBA player who is underrated, he can stretch the defense, run the floor, get to the basket if he really wants to……he is a good player, too bad you fans didn’t realize that………

    This has been a complete disaster….

  • Steve

    Didn’t I read somewhere recently that Don Nelson had “lost his locker room”? In the last week I’ve watched the Warriors beat both New Orleans and Utah, and make the very physical and veteran Rockets sweat out to the final buzzer a much needed win, all with only 7 somewhat healthy bodies. What the Warriors have done all season as well or better than any team in the NBA is play hard every game. When a coach “loses his locker room”, the evidence is overwhelming. Players quit! They play as if they’re already halfway to their favorite offseason tropical resort. Look around the league. The other night the Kings are trailing the Clippers by 30 points in the first friggen quarter en route to losing by that same margin, and I hate to think of how many times those two teams were blown out by 20 or more points this season. Even a team like Cleveland, that should NEVER lose big, was beaten by almost 40 points a few weeks ago. Yet the Warriors, lacking in bodies and experienced talent all season, have always shown up to play. Losing the locker room? Yeah, right. LOL Just another example of the inept reporting of GSW basketball this season by many of the local scribes. And speaking of Monte Poole, wasn’t it fitting that a few days after writing a column that tried to make a case for why Jerry Sloan was more worthy of Hall of Fame enshrinement than Don Nelson, that Nelson’s Warriors go to Utah and watch Sloan’s Jazz fall flat on their collective faces in a must-win game? LOL Seriously, just the fact that a columnist would take either one of these great coaches and try and put a negative slant on one career vs the other in comparison pretty much makes my point. While the Warriors have gone down fighting this year, the level of competence in sports (GSW) reporting (Poole, Kawakami, et al) has just simply gone down.

  • Dave

    Yeah the reporting by the Bay Area press has gome down “Steve”………….but so has the blogging by bay Area bloggers like yourself…..your post is worthless. A couple of good games in situations where a young team has absolutely nothing to lose are basically meaningless.

    The Utah win was nice but might I remind you of the losses to Memphis and Minnesota over the past few weeks.

    You’re right, Utah HAD to win that game, but Utah is not a Western Conference powerhouse, they are a #7 seed barely hanging on for their lives….they have lost their locker room too. Boozer doesn’t like being there, Kirilenko and Sloan are constanitly feuding and it’s basically Williams playing for himself, with some nice contributions by Millsap, Brewer and Okur….that’s about it for that squad.

    We’ve played tough all season and I like some of the young pieces, but let’s see how we do when WE actually start playing in meaningful games in April, until then, the stark reality should hit you and that is:

    We lost a home game to Minnesota last week too, any thoughts on that?

  • Steve

    Dave, my thoughts? Yeah, that your reading comprehension is abysmal, if not worse. What I wrote had nothing, ZERO, to do with the Warriors winning or losing games, it was about how hard they played as a team all season. Comprende?

  • Dave

    “Steve”……..you also made a big fuss about the Utah win and the Sloan vs. Nelson pre-emptive Hall of Fame article comparison by Monte Poole, and you seemed to imply that Nelson got the better of Sloan…….that part of your post is absolutely absurd.

    Sloan will be laughing his way to the playoffs for the next few years while we’re still struggling to find our way as an organization.