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Exhibition #1: Ws v. Clips

Baron, with the mini ‘fro and sweat dripping from the rugged beard beneath his mean mug, walked over to C.J. Watson and leaned in with fists balled. He faked a few body blows as C.J. curled up on the bench smiling, trying to block and dodge Baron’s air punches.
Davis wound up sitting down next to Watson and getting an update on the Warriors happenings.


*****

I’ve heard in the rumor mill, from a few objective insiders, that Stephen Curry has been giving Monta the business in practice. Specifically, Curry’s been pulling and nailing mid-range jumpers at will. Undoubtedly, Monta has been returning the favor. But no one expects Curry to be able to guard Ellis. But it’s pretty interesting, I think so at least, that Curry is having his way with the starting point guard.
I will tell you one thing, Nellie is bubbling inside about Curry, and Sunday was a bit of evidence as to why.
One thing noticeable about Curry is that he sees the floor and he’s good at finding the open man. Add to that the threat of his stroke, and you’ve got a match-up problem. Curry on the floor with Anthony Morrow gives defenses fits because they both get their shots off quickly, and Morrow forces the defense to spread out.

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CURRY: “I know where guys want the ball, which is something a point guard needs to know. Especially in our system, there’s a lot of movement, so knowing who to get the ball to in what position is something that will make us better.”

It is for this reason that Nelson feels like he must get Curry and Ellis on the floor at the same time. He said Curry is going to open up the floor for Ellis.

NELSON: “Anybody that’s going to play with Curry is going to be a beneficiary of a lot of open looks. That’s why I can’t keep him and Monta off the court together.”

*****

Brandan Wright seemed to be in good spirits before Sunday’s game. He said he’s already moved on mentally to the rehabilitation process. The Warriors announced before the game that the MRI revealed damage to the “capsule of his left shoulder” and surgery is required. A timetable for his recovery won’t be set until after the surgery.
He turns 22 on Monday.
Wright said he got hit on the inside of his forearm up near the elbow.

WRIGHT: “My arm must’ve been hit like that a hundred times this summer.”

Wright said this time, the shoulder stayed out of its socket for more than five minutes. Last time, he said, it popped out and went back in. If you’ve ever done it yourself, or at least seen any of the Lethal Weapons, you know that hurts like nobody’s business.

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WRIGHT:“Yeah, it definitely hurt.”

****

Late in the first quarter, Baron was driving for what looked like an uncontested layup. Baron Davis, meet Anthony Randolph.
AR4 came from the weak side and met Baron at the rim, swatted his attempt away. The block started a fast-break that led to Jackson finding Azubuike for an open layup.

****

Before the game, Curry tried on all his gear to make sure it fits. He likes it not too baggy and not too tight, he said.
The cheers began once they saw him walking out on the court, before his name was even announced, something that hadn’t happened since his junior year at Davidson after he led the school on its tournament run. He said he was already excited, and a bit nervous, after walking out onto the court for warm-ups.
Curry calmed himself down with defense. Seconds into his stint, he deflected a pass that led to a Warriors lay-up. A minute later, he nearly came up with a steal. See, he plays defense.

NELSON: “He just has the ability. Quick hands. Quick feet. I don’t know exactly what it is. He doesn’t look he’s going to be that kind of player, but he is. He’s going to be a special player some day.”

CURRY: “I value it. I work just as hard on the defensive end as I do on the offensive end. Being in the right position is where I’m going to be the most effective. I’ll play one-on-one D and make it hard on my defender, but my role as point guard is to contain the ball and be the help defender where I’m able to get deflections and get some steals and get out in the open court. I think I did that well tonight. I’m trying to be everywhere pretty much on defense. A lock down defender? They might not call me that. But I’ll be a great help defender.”

*****

Stephen Jackson picked up a technical foul late in the first quarter when he complained about a foul call. No, preseason techs don’t count towards the 15 the league gives you during the season before being suspended. But if the replacement refs are still working when the season begins, Jax might be in trouble.

*****

Anthony Morrow swears he has hops, he just doesn’t show them that often because he’s spotting up. Sunday, he showed off some hang time. On a fast-break with one defender, he cradled the ball as he glid across the key and dropped in a reverse layup.

MORROW: “Just instinct, I guess.”

By the way, he was 8-for-11 from the field 4-for-6 from 3-point range, and he had three assists.

Marcus Thompson

  • feltbot

    Curry was the revelation tonight. What kind of rookie gets 9 assists and 5 steals in 24 minutes of his first NBA game? Even if it is preseason. What kind of basketball IQ does this kid have?

    We’re going to love watching Curry this year.

    I think Nellie is on to something with KA starting, Curry and Morrow off the bench. MORROW MUST PLAY WITH CURRY AT ALL TIMES.

    And at the end of the year Morrow must buy Curry an Escalade. This kid is going to MAKE Anthony Morrow.

    Don Nelson stole the draft. AGAIN.

    (My game recap is up: http://feltbot.com/ )

  • JustPuked

    Okay Feltbot, we get it, you have a blog. How many places are you spamming with the link?

    Nice details from pre game, the locker room and post game Marcus, Thanks!

  • TimTom

    is feltbot another word for Bob Fitzgerald. Lay off the Kool-Aid man, this team is bad, and will be bad. Curry can’t save this team, that Don Nelson destroyed. AGAIN.

  • Earl monroe

    These kind of assist numbers are possible when you think pass first and it’s also contagious

  • sartre

    It’s hard not to be excited about the Curry/Morrow tandem. It helped soften the blow that Wright’s injury caused. What I’m still waiting to see though, with increasing anxiety after the summer league and this first pre-season game, is that Curry pull up jumper off the dribble hitting the mark with greater frequency.

  • some guy

    i know many of us are tired of the small ball lineups, but i fail to see how Nelson has “destroyed” the team “again”. he may eventually destroy it, but so far it’s still together. and in reality, he’s not Jerry Krause or Joe Dumars destroying a legit contender. he’s potentially wrecking a 30 to 40-some win / 8-12th seeded team.

    the biggest culprits are Rowell with the Jackson & Nelson extensions & Mullin with the Maggette signing and Marcus Williams trade.

  • Santa Claws

    Feltbot is a genius. I recommend reading his blog on a daily basis if you want to become richer in the mind and purer in the soul.

  • sonnyg

    Now it seems pretty official- Nelson is planting the idea that he’s convinced Curry will be playing with Ellis…a lot. I sure wouldn’t mind seeing a front court of Randolph, Biedrins, and Turiaf to compensate. I think Randolph is agile enough to hang with the leagues 3′s and he would also provide extra support for Ellis and Curry. I think the bigger challenge for Randolph playing the 3 would be his offense.

    It’s definitely time to move Jackson. Despite his declarations, I think he is still at an all-time high with respect to trade value. If the Warriors wait there is no way he will approach the numbers he put up last year. He continually ruins the fluidity of the offense and his presence prevents Morrow from getting time on the court. Jackson, a number 1 and a few expiring contracts might land you a high-level power forward. And even if its a one year gamble like Stoudemire or Boozer, why not. If the Warriors start winning a majority of their games, with their youth and depth, they just might appear attractive to a rent-a-star.

  • SufferedThroughJBCarroll

    You are severly overrating Jack’s trade value Sonnyg

    We’re not getting back a “high level” PF lmao..

    Best we can hope for is trading Jack to a contender for a shorter contract.

  • MountainJim

    Jackson’s all-time high trade value was over the second he inked that extension. Now he’s an aging role player with a contract only a contender would take on, and them taking on the contract would be the biggest thing we’ll get back unless there’s a multi-player deal involved.

    Dumbest move ever, Rowell.

  • Wrigged

    It’s only the preseason…

  • Oregonguy

    #3 Timtom. Takes special courage–or something–to post something negative after a nice win.

    This game gave us a lot of positive food for thought and makes it seem possible that last year will fall into the category of a bad dream. Guys, give it a rest…

  • deano

    Yes, it’s only preseason; but Curry’s line is still an eye-popper. We know he can shoot, so 2-10 FGs is not a worry. 9 asssits to 3 turnovers and 5 steals — amazing. What GSW has neeeded most, since Baron left, is a point guard who can handle, dish and play D (at least when he wants to). Yes, it is too soon to declare that Curry meets those needs; but we should treat ourselves to the appreciation of this early sign of potential greatness.

  • PhilB

    If Curry can play the point (early returns encouraging)then watch the dominoes fall (starting with Ellis and SJax). Replace Ellis with Morrow and we’re good.
    BTW, Curry looks stronger than originally advertised. Another good sign.

  • Briz

    Please don’t start with this AR4 type nickname. They are horrible. If you need to nickname someone, make it creative and base it off his personality or play, not his initials. That’s just lazy.

  • jsl

    Perfect post, Marcus. This is what a blog entry should be — especially for those of us who couldn’t see the game.

    Love the story about Curry and Monta. Competition can be a good thing, and SC seems to get it already.

    Felty, is there anyone else — besides Meir, maybe — who thinks the Fat Man “stole the draft” when Curry fell into his lap? You make some good points about SC — and I’m glad to see you can get it about someone — but your constant Fat Man brown-nosing is pure nonsensical gibberish. The guy’s a fool who’s found he’s lucked into a pretty talented team.

    Let’s see if he can finally figure it out.

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  • jerry

    Thinking about Wright,

    It’s a shame, but does anybody else get the feeling that his body just isn’t built to bang inside? If he gets injured in practice, how can you expect him to bang undernreath with Stoudemire , Bynum and David West? It’s really a shame to lose him, but he might just be one of those inury prone dudes. If this is the worst injury loss the W’s have all year, I can live with that. Plus now Randolph can get major minutes and not have to look over his shoulder.

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  • slow yur roll

    as a long time warriors fan i’m excited too about the possibilities of curry, but lets not put too much weight on a pre-season game against the clippers. here’s why: first of all teams arent game planning for curry, yet. best believe that if he shows skills in the regular season that other teams will start game planning for him and will learn how to make it tough for him to score and dish. second, nice assist numbers and nice rumors about pulling up on monta in practice but have we heard anything about his defense other than what he says? Don Nelson is an offensive guru but is just a half step above d’antoni in allergicness to defense. they can score all they want but can they stop anyone? can curry check bigger and stronger pg’s like the ones we have in the west? is it possible to have two undersized guys playing the 1 and 2 and defend anyone else? those are big questions that must be answered. if they cant hang with those bigger 1′s and 2′s then they wont be able to be on the floor at the same time. and third, again preseason assist totals are just the preseason. i am still not convinced that curry is a pg. i know he’s a shooting guard but can he not only make passes but make the right passes and run the team withgout jacking up his own shot at the end of the shot clock like he did in college? those are big questions. i’m hopeful but my excitement is tempered.

  • A’s in 2010

    Great Post Marcus! This is the kind of stuff I come to this blog for.

  • petaluman

    Marcus,

    I’d really appreciate a player-by-player breakdown of how they look to you after the 1st week of TC. We’re always interested in anything you have to say about our favorites, but ideally a team can count on everyone on the roster. Do Claxton, George, and Moore look like they have any gas left in the tank? Is Acie likely to contribute more than Marcus did last year?

    For a different sport, here’s Matt Maiocco’s superhuman effort to break down the entire 49ers roster in the Rams game.

    http://blog.pressdemocrat.com/49ers/2009/10/every-49er-revew-of-win-over-rams.html

  • Harp’s Dubs

    Marcus,thank you for finally getting the Al Harrington banner off the top of your page! If Curry’s the man, ship Monta, Jackson, BWright (option picked up) and Speedy to Houston for McGrady, Aaron Brooks and Carl Landry (a real backup PF).
    Warriors:
    PG – Curry, Brooks, Watson
    SG – Morrow, Azubuike
    SF – McGrady, Maggette, George
    PF- Randolph, Landry
    C – Biedrins, Turiaf, Moore

  • Damon

    great to hear positive news about the new draftie, he’s good for the team it seems, small backcourt here we come!

  • Earl monroe

    The worst you can say about someone is that they’re average
    50 percent is average. Can someone here tell me what nelson’s
    winning percentage is?

  • feltbot

    jsl, let me remind you that according to many insiders,if Nellie had drafted Hill instead of Curry, we would now have Stoudemire for Biedrins. Once Nellie got his hands on Curry, he turned his back on that deal, pissing off the Suns in the process.

    Don Nelson’s record in drafts is unparalleled. He did not luck into his Bucks teams. He did not luck into RunTMC. He did not luck into Nash-Nowitzki-Finley-Howard. And he has not lucked into this stacked Warriors roster.

  • Steve

    Earl monroe, anyone who equates the word “average” with Don Nelson is an idiot. And heaven knows there are plenty of those (idiots) who blog on this site on a regular basis. Even though I’m a fan of Nelson, I don’t agree with everything he does, which includes his myriad coaching methods and philosophies. Most recently (assuming Nelson was at least part of the thought process), I thought getting rid of Marco Belinelli for next-to-nothing was a Warriors move that brought back unpleasant memories from the Gary St. Jean days. Their reasoning that Marco would get lost on the bench behind C J Watson, among others, didn’t make sense to me since I consider Belinelli to be a better allround player than Watson. Regardless, I still like “Nellie”, and have always considered him to be one of the best coaches in NBA history. True, he’s never won a championship as a coach, but he’s never had any truly great teams or players to coach. Jerry Sloan has never won any championships (despite having Karl Malone and John Stockton to coach) but he’s now in the HOF. Nelson should already be there. Everywhere he’s accepted coaching offers were flat out reclamation projects, not ready-to-win teams. Yet, he’s always found ways to turn teams into winners, and make them highly entertaining in the process. Despite the Warriors finishing 23 games under .500 last year (due to injuries, roster turnover and youth), Nelson still has a winning record as coach of the Golden State Warriors (396-387). When you think of how bad this organization has been for the better part of the last 35 years, it’s remarkable to think anyone could coach the Warriors for almost 800 games and have a winning record. He has his flaws, for sure, but overall he’s been a helluva coach. To fully appreciate Don Nelson’s career and why he’s a slam dunk for the HOF, I suggest reading the following http://www.mavswiki.com/index.php?title=Don_Nelson

  • Purdman Jr.

    AR4 is the lames nickname of all time. We already have cp3, cb4, arod, krod. Come up with something more clever and creative please. Stop the lame initials plus number nicknames! Unfortunately I don’t have a better idea

  • MichaelG

    Bravo, Steve…totally agree…finally someone who respects history!

  • feltbot

    Tim Kawakami has BANNED me from his blog! I am no longer able to post my thoughts there. Presumably because of the piece I wrote about him on my blog.

    Isn’t it fascinating that a journalist who earns his living by reporting and fomenting ill-will and misery could have such a thin skin himself? Isn’t there a delicious irony in the fact that TK is censoring the voices of his readers?

    This is what I attempted to post on his blog:

    “Another typical TK cup of venom. Who brewed it up for him? Who are his unnamed sources? It should be obvious by now. If it’s not, I can clear it up for you on my blog.”

    This has nothing to do with a spam filter. I tried posting another tid-bit: “It may have come as a surprise to TK’s sources that KA got the start in the backcourt over Morrow and Curry, but not to me. I predicted it.” I was not allowed to post this either.

    Censored by a journalist who holds himself out as a truth-teller, and enemy of censorship. Amazing.

  • Trade Jackson

    NEW BANNER!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.greenpitch.org Ste

    Hey.. sorry for the off topic question, but does anybody know if it possible to watch the GSW – Lakers game online ?

  • A’s in 2010

    Yes it will be. I see it on atdhe.net

  • JJ

    Someone’s gotta go. There is a logjam waiting to happen. Ellis was right, Curry & Ellis can’t coexist together in the backcourt. Ellis sucks on D and would get destroyed by opposing big SG’s. So what to do? If Curry isn’t going to start, then why was he made “untouchable” in the Amare trade talks? Ridiculous. You have a few options available for the W’s backcourt & lineup, and all of them have their potential drawbacks that make one conclude that the best scenario would be trading Ellis or someone…

    ellis/sjax/azu = like last yr, W’s would lack passing
    ellis/morrow/sjax = like last yr,W’s would lack passing
    curry/ellis/sjax = undersized, destroyed on D
    curry/sjax/azu = this might work, trade Ellis 4 Josh H.
    curry/morrow/sjax = rookie/soph/vet/soph/mid-vet … yeah this might work but you lose Ellis’ slashing ability and not many teams this young win in the NBA. also is Morrow the real deal or an Eddie House clone?

    the problem with having Ellis on the team is he, like Iverson, ballhogs too much to play PG and is too undersized/inept on D to play SG. AI has scored a lot, but it’s no wonder Iverson hasn’t won much in his career. And Ellis is basically a poor man’s Iverson. I think it’s futile to have Curry sit on the bench when you could’ve had AMARE. Yet if he starts, then it creates problems. Gotta wait and see, just like ever other Warriors “maybe” season.

  • http://www.greenpitch.org Ste

    Oh yeah ! … thanks a lot

  • sartre

    I want to add my voice to the praise Marcus received for this post. As a dubs fan I’m desperate for current analysis of how the team and individuals are actually performing rather than the endless sensationalistic soap opera focus on what’s going on behind the scenes.

    As everyone acknowledges it is hard to see how Nellie can make the two smalls work as a regular back court combo. But we’re nevertheless in a great position with Curry backing up Monta at PG. It forces the organization to more gradually introduce Curry, to allow him to find his feet at this level. This way in a year or so the team will have a good idea about which of the two to stay with. That will give them a quality player to trade for someone who fits better with the overall team make-up. Given Curry is the better passer and it seems defender I wonder how much production as a scorer he needs to reach the tipping point where Monta’s scoring brilliance gets outweighed? And if we trade Jack who is going to provide assists when Curry is not on the court? For all his turnovers he averaged 6.5 assists, far more than any other current player on the roster.

  • The Captain

    For nicknames I propose for Randolph and Morrow, “The Twin Tonys.” Unfortunately that leaves it kind of up in the air when you’re only talking about one of them…heh, heh.

  • The Captain

    For nicknames I propose for Randolph and Morrow, “The Twin Tonys.” Unfortunately that leaves it kind of up in the air when you’re only talking about one of them….heh, heh.

  • Tdubb

    It’s funny to hear all this talk about how two small’s can play with each other. Check out the height of Joe Dumars, Isiah Thomas and Vinnie “Microwave” Johnson. And small forward Mark Agguire? 89-90 NBA Champions.

    I’m not putting the W’s in the finals but hell, in this league Chris Paul is a dominant player and he guards someone.

    Curry can play, Monta can play and Morrow can play….The NBA is about match ups on both ends and adjustments. If there are no more injuries it’s on Nellie to figure it out on the defensive end!

    Let’s see how they do tonite facing the Lakers.

  • Tdubb

    For those of you that didn’t do the homework, Thomas 6’0″, Dumars 6’3″, Johnson 6’2″ and Agguire 6’6″.

    Just so you know.

  • sartre

    It’s not impossible Tdubb (particularly with more favorable match-ups) but as Monta implied by way of comparison with Baron they lack the big bodies, are not lock down defenders, and in Curry’s case have no prior experienced at this level. Another factor is the absence of strong defensive prowess among the dubs forwards to help compensate.