Emptying the Mailbag

Emptying the Mailbag

Youve got questions, and I think Ive got answers. E-mail Matt Steinmetz, and letsget into it
Are the Warriors going to make a trade? Ricky M., Concord,Calif.Id put the odds at better than 50-50 right now. TheWarriors are 10-24, and while they figure to improve in January, its not likewere looking at a dramatic turnaround here. When youre struggling like theWarriors are struggling, its almost more gutsy to sit tight than to make amove.

I think there will opportunity for Warriors general manager Larry Rileyto make a move, and it will be awfully tough to not do anything.

Hey, Matt, should the Warriors get Tracy McGrady? Andre,San Jose.
It almost doesnt matter whether or not the Warriors should.They wont. Why? Because Riley has basically stated that hes not interested incap room because there is no guarantee you can parlay that into a tangible freeagent.

So, dont expect him to make a trade and part with a piece just to haveMcGrady in a Warriors uniform for a couple of months. Plus, theres the veryreal issue of McGradys injury history.When will the Warriors sign a player out of the D-League?Mike, San Jose.
Id look for that to happen in the next week or so, if it happens at all. Warriorscoach Don Nelson has expressed interest in bringing in a small forward type soI wouldnt be surprised if something is forthcoming.

With the good play of Corey Maggette, if he keeps it up,will the Warriors still make it a priority to trade him? If we do, we would beputting even more pressure on Monta Ellis. --Kirk, Redwood City, Calif.

I still believe moving Maggette is a priority, and I believethat for a couple of reasons. First, the Warriors would love to get offMaggettes contract. Second, Maggette certainly has some value around theleague, specifically with a few contenders and even with some general playoffteams.
Maggette certainly isnt without value, but he just doesntfit on this young Warriors team. Asfor putting more pressure on Ellis, if the Warriors make the right trade forMaggette, then the move should actually take pressure off Ellis. Maggette helpsin one area: scoring.But if the Warriors were to get a more well-rounded player,such a player would certainly help Ellis more than Maggette does.
Yo, Matt, in Mychael Urbans chat the other day he claimsyou called him out back-in-the-day and challenged him to one-on-one. Ive seenhim. Hes like Mark Eaton. How would you take him? Hed try to back you downall day long? Money B. Oakland.

Ill tell you right now, without ever having seen him play,Urban is one of these robotic, mechanical big men who you can turn over atwill. And I see playing against him resulting in me getting hurt.

Ive seen Anthony Randolph has the potential to be great.But will he become a triple threat with his shooting, passing and driving anytimesoon? Canaan B., San Jose.
I think Randolph is still years away from reaching hispotential at least three or four years. And whats most scary is that hemight never end up being the kind of player most hope he will become. But thenagain, he might. Thats what makes him so intriguing.I like that he can put up numbers by accident. But he stillhas a long way to go in terms of refining his game.

Where is Jaymee Sire? Wiwat, San Jose.

A lot of times shes downstairs. I work on the second floor,and she works on the first. When shes not down there, you can find her on thesidelines at Warriors games and Raiders games, not to mention in the studiohosting SportsNet Central. Shes not hard to find. You just have to look.

Shanahan showed patience with Beathard; Will now have to show more

Shanahan showed patience with Beathard; Will now have to show more

Kyle Shanahan is, self admittedly, not a patient person. As he watched quarterback C.J. Beathard run the scout team over the last couple of weeks -- how he visualized an unfamiliar play, went through his progressions and handled the defensive coverages -- the head coach saw rapid improvement every day. But he suppressed any urge to play the rookie before he was ready.

“I tried to wait for the right time for him and the right time for the team,” Shanahan explained.

Down 14-0 to Washington halfway through the second quarter with starter Brian Hoyer struggling, Shanahan knew Beathard’s time had come.

“I felt the team needed it right then,” Shanahan said. “It also made me more confident to do it because I thought he was ready for it, also.”

Moments after the game was over, Shanahan named Beathard the starter. Watching the game tape on the flight home only bolstered his decision.

“By no means was he perfect, missed a couple of things, but that always happens,” Shanahan said. “I thought he came in there, didn’t hesitate, competed. The moment was not too big for him. Made a few plays in rhythm, made a few off schedule plays and was a big reason we got back in that game.”

Beathard led the 49ers on two scoring drives and finished 19-of-36 with 245 passing yards, a touchdown and an interception, though it came on fourth-and-20 on his final pass attempt of the game. On his 45-yard touchdown pass to Aldrick Robinson, Beathard extended the play when the fifth year receiver wasn’t where he expected him to be.

“He was supposed to go to the post for a certain coverage, and they had a busted coverage, so he just hung out there which is why C.J. didn’t see it right away,” Shanahan explained. “We had enough protection where he could take a couple more hitches. He drove the pocket and saw where Aldrick was, and he didn’t hesitate. Made that throw with that arm strength.”

Shanahan smirked at his not-so-subtle dig at those who questioned Beathard’s arm strength during the draft process. He sees a quarterback who can make all the throws, and make them from the pocket, and scramble when he needs to. All he needs now, Shanahan contends, is experience.

“It’s about playing in the game and reacting to defenses, reacting to coverages, reacting to adjustments. He’s going to see a lot of things he hasn’t seen before, and that will change each week. It will probably change each quarter.”

Helping Beathard continue to grow through those experiences will require patience, but in this situation, it’s the kind the head coach can handle.

“You’re never going to get a quick answer. You see over time, but he’s got the ability to do it. He’s got the mental toughness to do it. I think he will get better the more he plays.”

Kings look to get healthy with opener just days away


Kings look to get healthy with opener just days away

SACRAMENTO - All hands on deck. The Sacramento Kings open the 2017-18 schedule Wednesday night against the Houston Rockets at Golden 1 Center and it looks like they might do so with a full arsenal of players at their disposal.

Point guard De’Aaron Fox returned to practice on Sunday and then participated in the team’s annual Fanfest. If his dance moves are any indication, the 19-year-old’s back is feeling just fine.

Veteran George Hill tweaked his groin Friday against the Golden State Warriors, leaving his availability for opening night in question. Hill, 31, who has a history of groin injuries, was on the court Monday practicing and said he is ready to play.

“Everything is feeling good right now,” Hill said Monday following practice.

The only player who didn’t practice on Monday is rookie Bogdan Bogdanovic, who sprained his right ankle against the Warriors. According to head coach Dave Joerger,  the team is hopeful that the Serbian sharpshooter will return in time for Game 1.

“We’re still shooting for Wednesday for both of them,” Joerger said of Hill and Bogdanovic.

New look Rockets

The Rockets went 55-27 last season under head coach Mike D’Antoni, but that didn’t stop them from going all in during the offseason. With MVP runner-up James Harden already manning the backcourt, Houston added nine-time All-Star Chris Paul as their new starting point guard.

“Leadership, he’s a floor general,” Hill said about Paul. “Anywhere he goes, he’ll make a team better. We know they were already a good team without him, coming in with him is going to be a bigger task.”

It’s a new look roster and the expectations are huge for the Rockets. Houston averaged 115.3 points per game last season and led the league in both 3-point attempts and makes. This season, they also added two strong perimeter defenders in P.J. Tucker and Luc Mbah a Moute.

It’s a huge test coming out of the gate for Sacramento. Following the contest against the Rockets, the Kings hit the road for three straight before returning to Golden 1 next Thursday to face DeMarcus Cousins and the New Orleans Pelicans.

Camp notes

With the season just around the corner, the Sacramento Kings made their final roster cuts on Sunday afternoon. David Stockton, Matt Jones and Reggie Hearn were waived, leaving the Kings with 15 rostered players and two two-way players in Jack Cooley and JaKarr Sampson.

Stockton, Jones and Hearn are all expected to join the Reno Bighorns of the NBA’s G-League.