What to Watch For (Game 1): Andrew Bogut is a Game-Time Decision; Mark Jackson Rips Two of His Players
By Marcus Thompson
Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 at 4:12 pm in Uncategorized.
Mark Jackson said center Andrew Bogut will be a game-time decision. Bogut participated in shootaround fully, his third straight practice.
Still, Jackson said he will talk to Bogut and watch him closely before deciding if he’ll play tonight. If he doesn’t play, rookie center Festus Ezeli will get the start.
JACKSON: “He did everything we needed him to do Tuesday. He feels good. I’ll make a decision when we get to the arena (Wednesday night). It’s just about how he feels, basically. That’s pretty much the way were going to go for right now, being patient and staying true to the process.
Jackson said if Bogut can play, he will start. But he will be a short leash.
The goal will be to ease Bogut into form. He’ll probably be on limited minutes, may sit out the second game of back-to-backs or get a day off during hectic stretches. And when he does play, he’ll be getting his conditioning down, learning his teammates and shaking the rust off after a nearly 10-month absence.
JACKSON: “I think you have to go in thinking that you don’t know when you’re going to have him. We have to make decisions accordingly. That being said, I’m very confident in Festus’ ability to start and Andris’ ability to be a backup. We’re covered. We’re protected. With all due respect, neither one of those guys is Andrew Bogut, but they can hold down the fort.”
Jackson said he was “impressed” and “proud” when he saw the commercial point guard Stephen Curry and rookie forward Harrison Barnes did for Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Basketball, which aired on TNT.
Jackson said he was at a restaurant when it came on and the television was on mute. But he liked what he saw.
JACKSON: “It was incredible. … I thought it was spectacular. The walking and the eating were spot on. It was a job well done by those guys. … I knew that both guys were very good actors, because they’ve been acting like defenders for quite a while – so good that they’ve become the characters and we’re excited about that.”
Curry is fully recovered from his sprained ankle, Jackson said, and will not be limited at all tonight.
JACKSON: “He’s not under watch. Not at all. We expect him to play as if its a regular season game and there’s no restrictions at all. At all.”
Jackson said the injury is suggests the strength of his ankle (to bounce back from the sprain normally) and is a testament to the patience of all parties to stay true to the process. The Warriors have created a sort of a protocol for Curry’s ankle issues. The latest rendition seems to work.
But that’s not the main reason Curry’s ankle recovered well.
JACKSON: “I think it’s more so the way I handled it.” Even he had to laugh at that one.
One of Jackson’s biggest challenges early on will be crafting a rotation from all the depth the Warriors like to proclaim they have. But how do they work together? How can he take advantage of the strengths of a few? How does he dole out minutes? How long does he rest his key players? How does he deal with those who are disgruntled over lack of minutes?
He has his work cut out for him.
JACKSON: “I think 10 guys (in the rotation) is realistic because we have legitimate back-ups at every position. That being said, the minutes with those back-ups are not going to be all the same. Some are better than others. It’s going to be on a nightly basis, but they’re going to have an opportunity. Everybody else just has to stay ready.”
My guess as to the first five off the bench: Brandon Rush, Jarrett Jack, Carl Landry, Festus Ezeli, Richard Jefferson.
The player Jackson will find ways to get on the court: Draymond Green.