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Less Than a Week to Go, Warriors Still Weighing Tons of Options

By Marcus Thompson II mthomps2@bayareanewsgroup.com

Jerry West, Warriors’ board member and consultant,  has been drilling this word into the psyche of his front-office cohorts. Assets. Assets. Assets.

“We can’t afford to let assets pass us by and address need,” said Warriors general manager Bob Myers, explaining West’s philosophy. “If the best asset is a guard, we have to take him at seven.”

With the NBA draft less than a week away, the Warriors options are still wide open. That’s especially so because every available prospect is in play even if he dupllicates what’s already on the roster. The only draft-related certainty Myers was willing to reveal in Friday’s chat with the media was that Golden State will take the best available player.

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Warriors Notes: Could Deng or Dion Be Fits for the Warriors?

Still have a week before draft day, meaning still a lot of time for things to change. Here is what I’m hearing regarding the Warriors.

Per the NBA rumor mill, the Chicago Bulls are entertaining giving up Luol Deng to get into the NBA draft lottery. According to sources, Golden State hasn’t talked with Chicago about Deng yet. But Deng is on the Warriors’ short list of veteran small forwards they’d be interested in.

Chicago would have to take some of the Warriors’ baggage in return, such as Richard Jefferson or Andris Biedrins, along with the No. 7 pick. The Bulls may get better offers. Trade talks, from the Warriors end, have been fairly slow. But things won’t pick up in earnest anyway until next week, as the June 28 draft nears.

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Here is a couple name to throw into the mix for the No. 7 pick: Syracuse SG Dion Waiters and Washington SG/SF Terrence Ross.

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Oakland native Damian Lillard to Workout Solo for Warriors on Sunday

Golden State officially announced the workout schedule for Sunday. The six-man group is not the real story. The real story is the seventh guy: Damian Lillard. He’s going to wait until the six guys workout, then he’s going to do a private workout for the Warriors – at Golden State’s request.

The point guard from Weber State, who is from Oakland, is projected to go top 10. Could he be going No. 7 to the Warriors? Could the Warriors be sizing him up to see who wants him, and maybe use him as trade bait? Or do they know they don’t want him but want to do their due diligence on the prospects in their backyard?

Here’s a theory: Word is Portland wants Lillard. So maybe the Warriors are working out a deal with Portland to trade down – giving Portland the No. 6 pick and Lillard. Golden State could swap No. 7 for No. 11 and other stuff (say J.J. Hickson). Why would the Warriors need to work him out privately to pull that off? I don’t know! I said it was a theory.

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Jared Sullinger: “I Don’t Have to Rely on Athleticism”

Since I’m out at the U.S. Open, our Jimmy Durkin held down the fort at the Warriors’ workouts Thursday. Here is Ohio State big man Jared Sullinger keeping it real about his lack of athleticism.

What do you need to show teams?

“Just I can play. Pretty much just show them that I can play with length, play against length. Just show them that I’m a basketball player.”

Would you fit in with the Warriors?

“Any place I feel like I can fit in because it’s the NBA. You want to get to that spot so you’ve just got to find your niche. But the Warriors have two veteran bigs in David Lee and Andrew Bogut. I’d love to pick their mind and learn how to play in the post in the NBA.”

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Warriors Summer League Schedule

Golden State will play five games during the Las Vegas Summer League, the NBA announced.

July 11: practice

July 12: practice

July 13: vs. Los Angeles Lakers

July 14: vs. Denver Nuggets

July 16: vs. Phoenix Suns (scrimmage)

July 18: vs. Miami Heat

July 20: vs. Chicago Bulls

July 21: vs. New Orleans Hornets

Rookies Charles Jenkins and Jeremy Tyler will play. Klay Thompson may not take part in summer league since he’ll be practicing with Team USA from July 6-11. Even before Thompson’s addition to the Team USA select team was announced, GM Bob Myers suggested Thompson played enough as a rookie to negate the need for him to play in summer league.

However, Thompson is a gym rat who just might talk himself onto the court.

The Warriors could also have as many as 4 draft picks on the squad, too, since they have pick Nos. 7, 30, 35 and 56

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An Open Letter to LeBron James

I am not a sports journalist right now. I am a LeBron groupie coming out of the closet. And I am speaking on behalf of a nation of King James’ apologists.

Please, sir, get it done.

We don’t care that Oklahoma City is a better team and has home-court advantage. We don’t care that one of your key players, Chris Bosh, still isn’t 100 percent. We need you to come through for us.

We’re so tired of getting ‘The Decision’ thrown in our face every time we come across a hater. It no longer works to run off a list of Hall of Famers with no ring in defense of your bare knuckles. Your all-around greatness is no longer a sufficient rebuttal to attacks on your killer instinct. It’s time for you to come through. No excuses.

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Baylor’s Perry Jones and Kentucky’s Terrence Jones May Have Proved No. 7 to Be Too High for Them

NOTE: I’m hearing Tyler Zeller looked pretty good Monday. He showed he was more than the interior defender/post player. He can step outside the key and shoot it. He’s a smart player with some real skills to go with his 7-foot, 247-pound frame. Apparently, he kinda gave Vanderbilt defensive specialist Festus Ezeli the business.

No. 7 is probably too high for Zeller, and he likely won’t last until No. 30. But if the Warriors are unhappy with their options at No. 7, they could move down and Zeller would be in play.

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When all was said and done Monday, neither Baylor’s Perry Jones nor Kentucky’s Terrence Jones wowed Warriors management, according to sources. They’re good players with top-level talent, sure. And both played well. But they didn’t do enough to make the Warriors fall in love, which is probably what had to happen for either of them to be the  No. 7 overall pick.

Both players still have one major question hanging over their heads: can they play small forward at the NBA level? Neither answered that question, at least not definitively, with their performance in Monday’s workout, which means No. 7 may be too high for either.

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