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Warriors’ Draymond Green says he stuck tongue out at Jermaine O’Neal, not Clippers’ Blake Griffin

OAKLAND – Warriors forward Draymond Green said he did not stick out his tongue to taunt the Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin after making a 3-pointer in a 121-104 win Wednesday.

Green said Thursday that in the moment, he was actually making a face at former teammate Jermaine O’Neal, who directed an emotional look toward him after the 3-pointer from his courtside seat.
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Warriors 121, Clippers 104: Doc Rivers says Golden State is ‘gorgeous to watch’

OAKLAND – With essentially no positives to take out of the loss, Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers effusively praised the Warriors.

“I saw a beautiful game of one team,” Rivers said after the Warriors’ 121-104 win. “I actually told the (Clippers) four days ago, ‘Golden State the way they’re playing right now, it’s beautiful to watch.’ They got a team to me when you watch them, they’re completely bought in.
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Draymond Green changes agents, and general manager Bob Myers sees how that could help Warriors re-sign him

Warriors forward Draymond Green will become a restricted free agent after the season, and it could benefit the team’s chances of re-signing their standout reserve that he has hired new agents.

Green told USA Today he’ll now be represented by the Wasserman Media Group, which is led by Arn Tellem. Warriors general manager Bob Myers began is a former agent who worked with and was mentored by Tellem.

Tellem now representing Green, a Warriors second-round draft pick in 2012 who grew to become one of the most valuable members of their rotation, could help the team retain him.

“So if Arn says, ‘Hey, I got this much money (from another offer),’ he’s not going to lie to me, so there’s value in that,” Myers told 95.7 The Game on Wednesday. “And here’s the other thing I do know. If it’s a tie, we’ll win. Not only just because he’s restricted, but Arn, we’ve known other a long time, so he’s not going to hurt us. If he can help, that’s great.”

The 6-foot-7 Green is due a raise after proving himself as a clutch playoff performer, versatile defender and improving jump shooter.

“Maybe he’ll give me a discount?” Myers joked of his former boss Tellem. “Probably not, right?”

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Warriors’ Stephen Curry: Assistant Ron Adams holds him to higher standard of being championship-caliber defensively

OAKLAND – Warriors point guard Stephen Curry will guard the Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul tonight after having garnered praise for his defensive play to start the season.

Sacramento’s Darren Collison was 4 for 12 from the field. The Los Angeles Lakers’ Jeremy Lin didn’t make a field goal in six attempts. All-Star Damian Lillard was held to 4-for-18 shooting in Sunday’s win at Portland.

What’s changed for Curry this season has been the presence of assistant coach Ron Adams, a longtime veteran of NBA coaching who’s known for his defensive excellence.

“Just holding me to a higher standard,” Curry said of Adams’ influence. “Obviously we watch a lot of film and talk a lot about just how we’re supposed to see that end of the floor, what it means if I’m able to do what I’m supposed to do every single night for our team’s success.

“It doesn’t matter how many points I score. He seems to find that one or two things that I can do better on the defensive end after every game that kind of knocks you back into reality a little bit. You can always get better, and I have to be to be a championship-caliber point guard and for us to try to get where we’re trying to go.”

Adams has resonated with players including Curry with his quotes of the day, including one attributed to Michelangelo that says, “The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”

Curry last season often wasn’t asked by coach Mark Jackson to guard top opposing point guards, a strategy that caused controversy within Jackson’s own coaching staff. Curry is now getting that challenge, as he said he’ll get motivated to guard Paul tonight.

“Yeah, because if he plays well, it’s on me and vice versa,” Curry said. “You’ve got to be locked in and focused and do my part as a part of the game plan on defense and understand what we’re trying to accomplish.”

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Behind the Warriors’ $70 million man Klay Thompson, there is his bulldog, Rocco

OAKLAND – To get to know more about Klay Thompson, the newly minted $70 million man and talk of the NBA, take a look at his bulldog, Rocco.

“We were trying to get the contract signed, and all he wanted to do was go home to his dog, so he’s a pretty simple guy,” general manager Bob Myers said at Thompson’s press conference Saturday, giving Rocco some of the spotlight.

Asked if he went home to tell Rocco, that he signed a four-year, $70 million contract extension, Thompson laughed and told KNBR he tried.

“He didn’t know what it meant, though,” Thompson said. “That’s why I love him, though. He didn’t care the day before when I signed the contract or the day of. He just loved me for me being his master.”

Thompson was named the Western Conference player of the Week after starting the season as the league leader in scoring. He told the station that he grew closer with backcourt mate Stephen Curry while playing together at the FIBA World Cup in Spain since during the season and offseason the two have busy lives outside of basketball.

“Steph he’s got a young baby girl in Riley, and I got Rocco, a dog dang near like a child,” Thompson said.

Spoiled pup

A photo posted by Klay Thompson (@klaythompson) on

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Warriors 95, Trail Blazers 90: Stephen Curry noticeably ‘hawking people,’ taking steps forward on defense

PORTLAND, Ore. – Draymond Green, one of the Warriors’ defensive stoppers, has noticed how Stephen Curry is getting in on the action.

Curry, assigned to guard fellow All-Star point guard Damian Lillard, held the Oakland native to 11 points on 4-for-18 shooting. He then came up with the steal and the ensuing free throws to seal the Warriors’ 95-90 win at Portland.

“He’s really been hawking people up there, and it’s good to see that because that’s how people try to do him,” Green said. “When you give people a taste of their own blood, they’re really not expecting it. They don’t know him as a great defender, and he’s gotten so much better. He’s giving people problems.”

Coach Steve Kerr, who also remarked how Curry guarded Jeremy Lin on Saturday as well as anyone could have, noted that his point guard has “turned into an excellent defender.”

“He’s quick and has great instincts,” Kerr said.

The compliments are something Curry has heard before, and he wants to keep up the defensive pressure for the good of the entire team. When he can guard a team’s opposing point guard, that frees up the more noted defender, Klay Thompson, to shut down shooting guards.

“We were a top-five defense last year, and that’s why we were so successful,” Curry said. “No matter how offensively talented we are and how many points we can produce, if we don’t put forth that effort on the other end, you’re just kind of wasting talent on the offensive end. We have the personnel and the talent on the defensive end to do that and to be another top-five defense.”

Green has seen Curry pick up the defense since the preseason. When matched up against the Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul in that first game at Staples Center, Curry gave Kerr a glimpse of how he wanted to take on the star point guard.

“Forget what he did today,” Green said. “He’s been doing that this entire year for the first few games, in the preseason. I can see he’s really made an effort to do better defensively, and the more he does that, the better we’re going to be as a team.”

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Warriors’ Nemanja Nedovic says not playing is ‘confusing,’ looks to prove front office wrong after option declined

PORTLAND, Ore. – Warriors point guard Nemanja Nedovic said the disappointment that comes with not playing is worse than learning the team declined to exercise the third-year option on his contract.

Nedovic, the Warriors’ first-round draft pick in 2013, was in street clothes again Sunday at Portland after being placed on the inactive list for a second straight game.

Nedovic said he was disappointed in coach Steve Kerr’s decision not to play him thus far, but respected the decision and would stay ready.

“I really didn’t care too much,” Nedovic said of the Warriors declining his $1.15 million option next season. “All I really care about right now is playing. I wasn’t thinking too much about the option. I don’t care about the money. I just care about minutes and playing time.

“It’s confusing a little bit (not playing), but it is what it is.”

The 23-year-old Nedovic was available to play in the season opener, but saw top offseason signing Shaun Livingston come back from offseason toe surgery in time to play over him. Once Brandon Rush was healthy enough to play, Nedovic was made inactive as Kerr has preferred to use Leandro Barbosa and Andre Iguodala as ball-handlers.

Nedovic said he spoke with general manager Bob Myers and the front office while being informed of their contract decision last week.

“They just told me that doesn’t mean they’re giving up on me,” Nedovic said. “They invested a lot of money in me. I can use the season to prove them wrong. That’s what (Myers) said, so I’m trying to do the best out of it, keep working, stay in shape, and that’s the most important thing.

“It is a motivation, of course. I’m going to try to prove them wrong, and we’ll see what happens.”

Nedovic averaged 9.2 points and 2.6 assists in 15.9 minutes in the preseason.

“I think I’ve proved myself that I can play here, and that’s the most important thing,” Nedovic said.

“Not playing hurts. It’s different when you go home after a game where you played and after a game where you didn’t play.”