Nuggets Beat Warriors, Not Refs

Nuggets Beat Warriors, Not Refs

Jan. 21, 2010WARRIORS PAGEFirst of all, the officials had nothing to do with the Warriors loss last night to Denver, OK?Talking about a call at the end of the third quarter, and acting like it made a difference in a game that went overtime is a joke. Shouldn't even be wasting time on that.OK. Lets move on Ive heard from a few Warriors fans over the past several weeks, asking about Monta Ellis and whether hed ever made a big shot or was capable of making big shots down the stretch of a game. Of course, there was the New Jersey buzzer-beater a couple of years ago, but that was about it, according to some.Well, he hit two big ones in the 123-118 overtime loss to the Nuggets on Wednesday. The first came with 28 seconds remaining in regulation, when his 3-pointer tied the game at 105-105. The second came with 45 seconds remaining in overtime, when another of his 3-pointers gave the Warriors a one-point lead at the time.Just because J.R. Smith knocked down a 3-pointer after that doesnt mean Ellis shot there was any less big. But, yes, Ellis has got to make both free throws when his team is down two with 25 seconds remaining. And he didnt do that.Regardless, at this point, the issue of whether or not Ellis can convert in the clutch should be shelved until it's more relevant.--
For the first time since his debut, center Chris Hunter looked serviceable out there. Hunter needs to continue to contribute like he did against Denver or the Warriors arent going to look so good for guaranteeing his contract for the remainder of the season.Still cant understand why he isn't in better shape by now, either.--After watching another game where the Warriors were manhandled inside, once again youre left realizing theyve got to get a power forward at some point. Now, you can say all you want about that being Anthony Randolphs future position, and I might not even disagree with you there.Even still, Randolph has a ways to go and the Warriors would behoove themselves to find someone to play the four in the meantime.--I know in many ways his game represents so much of what Im not into, but on the other hand, I love the guy: J.R. Smith. Hes one of my favorite players, and I cant quite put my finger on why.

Two Rockets suspended for Clippers fracas, will miss Warriors game


Two Rockets suspended for Clippers fracas, will miss Warriors game

Houston’s Trevor Ariza and Gerald Green have both been suspended for two games for entering the Los Angeles Clippers’ locker room after a game earlier this week to confront another player.

The NBA announced the suspensions Wednesday.

Ariza and Green went into the Clippers’ locker room after a game Monday night in Los Angeles, one that was marred late by on-court chippiness. Ariza had been ejected from that game in the final moments, as was the Clippers’ Blake Griffin.

Speaking before the suspensions were announced Wednesday, Ariza said there were a “lot of different stories about what happened, none of them which were true.”

Ariza has started in all 40 of his appearances with the Rockets this season. Green has been with the Rockets for 10 games, all off the bench.

Green and Ariza will miss Thursday's game against the Timberwolves and Saturday's game against the Warriors.

Raiders DC Paul Guenther talks Khalil Mack, Gareon Conley and more


Raiders DC Paul Guenther talks Khalil Mack, Gareon Conley and more

Paul Guenther hasn’t been Raiders defensive coordinator long. He has been in Alameda about a week now, interviewing potential position coaches and pouring over last year’s game tape.

He has some initial impressions on the group that struggled at the start and improved throughout the year. Generally speaking, however, Guenther sees talent on the roster.

“I believe there’s a lot of good players here, a lot of good, young players,” Guenther said Wednesday in a conference call. “You’ve got to get them out and develop them and get them to understand your system. But I think there are a lot of good pieces here for a foundation, for sure.”

Guenther’s system, where it came from and why he brought it to Oakland is a story for another day. Thursday morning, to be precise, so stay tuned for that.

Guenther’s early evaluation of key Raiders, however, supports his statement about a strong foundation. He is most excited, as you’d expect, about working with edge rusher Khalil Mack and several others in silver and black.

Here’s what Guenther said about…

-- DE KHALIL MACK: “Having a talent like that and ability of a guy like that, certainly you want to make it the centerpiece of the defense. We have to continue to develop our younger players to bring those guys up to speed and add people as we go through the draft and free agency. He’s a guy that you can really build a foundation through and around. He’s an exciting guy to be able to coach for sure.”

-- CB GAREON CONLEY: “He was my favorite corner coming out. His ability, he’s smooth in the pedal, he’s a good press corner, which we love to have. I’m excited to work with him.”

-- S OBI MELIFONWU: “Obi is a big guy that when you turn on the tape, you’re like, ‘Man, who is this son of a gun?’ He’s playing half the field, he’s down in the box playing the run.”

-- LB NAVORRO BOWMAN: (an impending free agent): “NaVorro is a prototype middle linebacker, really. The thing that impressed me most with NaVorro is that they got him here midseason and by the end of the year, it appeared to me that he was kind of the leader of the unit, making a lot of calls. You can see that on tape. It looks like he is a smart guy that understands the game. I love smart guys that love playing football. Hopefully we can get him back in the fold and keep him a Raider.”