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Andrew Bogut: “I feel like I’m a liability out there”

The Warriors announced after Thursday’s practice they were shutting down Andrew Bogut for 7 to 10 days. The point is to strengthen his left ankle, which is still recovering from surgery in April.

After hearing Bogut talk about it, he is clearly frustrated, disappointed and fed up. While the rest of Warriors fans are encouraged by his production despite being limited, he can’t get past being limited. While the Warriors could use the little he brings, he can’t stomach bringing so little.

So, Bogut wants to take the time off to build his ankle up. And no one disagrees, especially based on how painfully obvious it is he’s not healthy. Here is Bogut in his own words.

Did you make this decision or did the doctors?

“We’ve just been playing it ear. … I probably came back a little early because I wanted to test the ankle out and really see where I was at. Probably a little too soon. But that’s what I wanted to do. It wasn’t the Warriors pushing me or anybody pushing me. It was myself trying to be out there and see how it responds. But my rehab progress has plateau’d a little bit. It hasn’t gotten worse but it hasn’t gotten better this last week, as much as I’d like it to. It’s still a little bit of a struggle to push off the ankle. It’s more just power and quick movement stuff I’m struggling with. I feel like I’m a liability out there because I can’t rebound, I can’t move the way I like to move. So we’re going to try to get it right the next 7 to 10 days, see how it responds.

So it can’t get better if your playing?

I think that’s what we’re thinking because my rehab arrow was going up, and then the more games I’ve been playing, it’s kind of just flattened out. I haven’t seen the progress of it getting better. I still get a little bit of swelling and soreness afterward. My concern isn’t really the pain at the moment. It’s more so the power moves that I can’t do because I can’t push off that left leg like I like. Rebounds right next to me and I can’t get that quick push off to get to the ball. So I just feel like there’s no point in laboring out there right now. For the next 7 to 10 days, get some rest and more strengthening than I’ve have been doing and see how it responds.

Is there a reason to think 7 to 10 days would do the trick?

No, it’s just a number we through out there in the blue. (laughs). I mean, there’s no right formula for this. So in 7 to 10 days, I could be ready. I could be ready in 5 or 6 days. But I might not be ready for another two weeks. We just don’t know. But 7 to 10 days is that number we think we’ll be able to reevaluate things and see how it is. Until I can comfortably jump off my left foot like I normally can, I think we’ll still be trying to strengthen it.

It’s unanimous that the team is better when you’re out there. How come you aren’t as encouraged?

Because I can do a lot more. I’m real disappointed with the way I’ve been playing. Part of it’s obviously the ankle but it’s not an excuse. I don’t want to go out on an NBA floor and use the ankle as an excuse for my performance. At the same time, I’m not just sitting out the next couple of games just because my numbers are bad. I’m not a numbers guy. I don’t care about numbers. We’re 3-2, that’s the main thing. But I don’t think I’m helping the team being out there as much as I can because I’m somewhat limited. I’d rather come back where I can really help the team much more than I am right now and then see how we go. And then Hopefully when I come back I’m not stuck at (20) minutes a game again. Maybe they can lift that off me or we can kind of adjust that a little bit with another 10 days rest. What a lot of people forget is I had two full practices before the first game, so I probably rushed into it a little bit. That’s why minutes were limited, so we’ve got to reevaluate things.

Do you initiate this?

Every thing’s been open dialogue. No one told me I should start. I made the decision by myself with the help of GM, coach and trainers. Same situation now. We’ve been in dialogue with coach Jackson, GM, my agent, with the doc, with our trainers, collectively we thought let us settle down for 7 to 10 days, get back in the weight room, see how we go. I haven’t had a chance to rehab because we’ve been playing games. Playing 20 minutes a game, doing shootarounds and practices. Can’t spend another 2 hours per day trying to get it strong. We thought we’d pass that earlier but obviously we haven’t. I need to get it a lot stronger than it is so I’m confident. Not all physically, but mentally too. I’m confident if there’s a loose ball, I can push off on my left ankle as much as I like, to go for that loose ball, or get that rebound, that blocked shot.

No travel? NO practice?

Not so much rest,. More like rigorous rehab, just strengthening the ankle as much as we can. Really lifting up the workload of getting the ankle strong. … Everything will remain the same and hopefully start practicing within a week. Just building it back up and seeing how it responds.

Are you disappointed or encouraged by your progress?

I’m obviously disappointed. I want to play basketball. It’s been a long road to get me back on the floor. I’ve tried it out now. I know how it feels on the floor, so now I’m going to be smart with it. I’ve tried to be a little bit of a hero early on and tried to push through some things that I probably shouldn’t have. But at least I know where I’m at now. I know what I need to do to get back into it and hopefully we’ll turn the corner.

Where is your sanity?

It’s tough. Very, very tough. Tough time in my life of sport, and even off the floor because it just weighs on my mind a lot. I know a lot of people are expecting me to be what I’m supposed to be. It hasn’t come to that yet. It’s going to take me a while to come to the top of my game so people will say good things about me. It is frustrating. All I can do is take it day-by-day.

Will you hold out until you are yourself again?

This isn’t a situation where I’m like, ‘Damn I’m not getting numbers. I’m going to sit out until I do.’ I don’t care (about that). I’d rather win. But I feel like I’m a liability out there right now at certain parts of the game. I just don’t feel like I can get that explosiveness off my ankle that I’d like. I don’t want it to be a situation where I’m taking away from my teammates who are probably playing better than me at the moment. And I’m just playing because they’re trying to get me healthy when we’re trying to win games. That’s the main concern right now.

So once you can do more on that ankle, you’ll be fine to play?

If I can get out there, I can get to that rebound like I know I can, quickly, I feel like I’ll be out there again. But if I’m out there and I’m second guessing whether I can push off it or not, kind of limping and making faces like I have been, it’s probably not the right time to be out there.

How is the swelling and pain?

It’s day to day. It swells up at times. It’s times where I get swelling … That’s the biggest thing I’ve probably haven’t managed as well because when you have swelling that means something’s wrong. So you’ve got to kind of be very, very careful with that. Obviously when you get swelling, the muscle shuts down and you’re laboring a bit more. Then that can cause more issues in other areas of the body. So there is some swelling issues every now and then, especially flying and do all those things. But that’s to be expected. That’s nothing out of the ordinary. That’s a pretty in-depth surgery that I had so there is going to be some swelling from time to time.

How difficult is it to balance your competitiveness with being smart?

Very tough because you never want to be seen as a puss who’s just sitting on the sideline and is hurt all the time. At the same time, like I said, you don’t want to be a hero and try to play through something and do more damage so. It’s a fine line right now but I think I crossed that line a little bit trying to play through it. Now, I’ve just got to be smart with it. However long it takes, it takes. I can’t control that now.

Marcus Thompson

  • Ewok

    Just rest it… There’s no shortcuts to it. Give it a good rest or whatever…

  • steve

    Might want to edit the “shits part out”

    the muscle shits down and you’re laboring a bit more. Then that can cause more issues in other areas of the body. So there is some swelling issues every now and then, especially flying and do all those things. But that’s to be exp

  • Ivanbe

    “Very tough because you never want to be seen as a puss who’s just sitting on the sideline and is hurt all the time.”

    Andris Biedrins begs to differ.

  • RNP

    I was very suprised he started playing as soon as he did, having only been cleared for 5 on 5 contact the week before. That seemed very premature,and that he had not yet built up the ankle’s strength against the pounding that full court basketball places on the body. This is going to talk longer than 7 to 10 days, and shouldn’t rush it. Ezeli, Biedrins and Tyler can give us plenty of good minutes, if given the chance. And I want to see Jenkins get some minutes too. He is a reliable ball handler and can break down the defense with his penetration better than Curry does.

  • wil

    I knew it was premature all along, it had disaster written all over it! I’m surprised they put him out there so soon. He gave in to overwhelming pressure from the media to perform right away. I hope he (and the Dubs)learned his lesson. Give him a month off or until he is 100% and your media leave him the heck alone.

  • John B

    This will be a true test re: how truly deep the Warriors have become per the pundits at the beginning of the season. Not a doctor or PT, but common sense tells me they (the Warriors) allowed him or pushed him to rush this thing at the possible expense of making it worse. Realistically, I was viewing this as a rehab. season with limited playing time anyways . . . don’t recover from something like this in a few months.

  • Real J-Ridah

    This will give Andrew ample time to acquaint himself with all the clubs in SOMA. He really hasn’t had enough time to get out to the local scene. As we have all discussed, clubs, booze and naked women is the most important thing in life and most important in attracting basketball free agents to the Bay. I guarantee you when word gets out in Australia that we are a major clubbing city we will attract all of the best Aussie player’s with kangaroo hops. When you think of it this is truly a blessing in disguise. See you at the club tonight Bogey, come on over to my VIP table and you can down a bottle or two with me. I’ll help your rehab!

  • jsl

    Excellent interview, MT; most complete story on Bogut yet.

    We now see what this guy can bring — even when he’s hurting he’s a terrific defender and those two plays with Curry last night were just fabulous. Let him take whatever time he needs — perhaps a month or two — to get that ankle strong.

    It’s unfortunate, but these things just take their own time. And Bogut, unlike AB, comes across as a very straight shooter.

  • Dan

    I sure hope this doesn’t mean that its small ball time…they play too much already….fire Jackson and elevate Malone now…

  • daniel

    Sit him until Dec then eval his ankle again. They can’t fuss around with an ankle or foot injury especially for a BB player. The problem is he is too big and heavy so unless the ankle is right, playing could cause real damages.

  • Ned

    Crazy that he played that early. 2 full practices. Trainers and Doc should be ashamed. These guys keep there jobs because they tell players, coaches, owners etc. what they want to hear at times. This is obviously one of those times. Curry will be next to go. He is playing way to many minutes.

  • deano

    I like Bogut’s attitude. He cares about his teammates. He wants to help them win, to be a big part the team’s success. Even though he is doing the best he can, he is not happy; because his best right now is not up to his own standards. What a pro.

  • Niners in 2012

    Hey Bogut, 18 mins from a hobbled you is better than 1 minute of Andris Biedrins

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  • zorro

    Enjoy watching Bogut play. Rest up, strenghten the ankle.. there are still lots of game left to play this year. Look forward to seeing a healthy Bogut on the floor.

  • Grey Warden

    10 days is nothing. Might as well sit him out for the year. Or do what the Warriors did last year: Start tanking in the 2nd half and hope for a good position in the lottery.

  • AV

    Looking at this team realistically without thinking about the past, I think playoffs this year should not be their focus. Building a contender in 2-3 years should. After these first few games I can see how it could play out. We need to keep our ‘strong’ players. Contenders have strong, smart 2 way players that help you win. It’s obvious to me even being limited by the injury is one of those players. Barnes, and Thompson could turn into that kind of player eventually. They have the size and athleticism to compete against anyone on both ends. Barnes I see becoming a Batum type player, not an all-star but a difference maker that helps you win. Thompson I see potentially being like a Ray Allen. He needs to work on his shot selection, play making and continue working on his D. So far he looks solid on D which is a good sign. Curry and Lee I don’t think are or ever will be strong players. While they both give you some offense they are both consistently overwhelmed on the defensive end. I think a contender could afford to have one of them in their starting lineup, but not both. If Curry continues to gain strength and shoots well as the season goes on, he would be a very attractive player have a very tradable contract. With Biedrins and Jefferson having 1 year expiring contracts after the season you can see a nice package for a star level, ‘strong’ player. Curry, Lee and Biedrins/Jefferson would be a nice package for a high quality player. You already have some high value players on your bench (Jack, Rush, Landry) and some promising rookies. Continue to draft well and 2014+ looks even brighter.

  • AV

    “… injury BOGUT is one of those players”

  • Dillymac

    Just drop him! He’ll never be healthy and they’ll just keep paying him!

    Yet another awful decision by Lacob, Meyers, and company.

  • Dillymac

    Just drop him! He’ll never be healthy and they’ll just keep paying him!

    Yet another awful decision by Lacob, Meyers, and company.

    Do the right thing W’s BUY HIM OUT

  • Derek

    Trading for Bogut was a terrible call. The guy is damaged goods who will NEVER be healthy enough to play another full season of basketball. The Warriors have been rebuilding since 1975. Excuses and terrivle decision are the norm. No matter how you may feel about Ellis, trading him for 2 big contracts, attched to useless players (Bogut and Jefferson) was a pathetic call. Bogut contract is done after the season. The team would be foolish to resign him for anything more than league minimum