Slumping teams meet as Warriors visit Wizards


Slumping teams meet as Warriors visit Wizards

March 2, 2011

WARRIORS (26-33) vs.

Coverage begins at 3:30 P.M. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area

WASHINGTON DC (AP) -- Golden State is off to a poor start on its longest road trip of the season. Even a matchup with the lowly Washington Wizards might not guarantee things will get better for the struggling Warriors.

The Warriors look to avoid a fifth consecutive loss overall Wednesday night to the Wizards, who have dropped six in a row themselves.

NEWS: Wizards coach Saunders to miss game

After losing to Boston and Atlanta on a brief homestand, Golden State (26-33) has dropped the first two stops on its seven-game trip. The Warriors opened the stretch with a 126-123 loss at struggling Minnesota on Sunday, then followed with a 109-100 defeat at Indiana on Tuesday.

The four-game skid likely drained any momentum the Warriors built up by winning seven of the previous nine contests. Golden State is 12th in the Western Conference, 6 12 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot.

REWIND: Free throws the difference as Pacers beat Warriors

While Golden State ranks near the bottom of the NBA allowing 105.9 points per game, it has given up 111.3 per contest the last four games.

The Warriors allowed Indiana to shoot 51.2 percent from the field in the second half Tuesday.

"I think we're focused on what we're trying to do," guard Stephen Curry said of the Warriors' defense. "We have a lot of effort. We have to look at film and see what teams are doing. I'm trying to find an answer. I don't really have one."

Though it would seem Golden State has a good chance to get back on track versus a Washington team that has lost 17 of 20, the Warriors have lost three of four overall and two straight on the road against the Wizards.

Washington averaged 115.0 points on 51.1 percent shooting to sweep the two-game season series versus Golden State in 2009-10.

The Wizards (15-44), however, have averaged 92.5 points during their current six-game skid. Washington has lost four of the last eight games by 20 or more points.

It shot 35.6 percent in Monday's 105-77 home loss to Chicago.

"Our fans were trying to fight back for us," said Washington forward Andray Blatche, who has totaled 46 points and 18 rebounds the last two home games versus Golden State. "But it came to the point where we didn't give them no reason to fight back after we were down by 20-something."

Though Washington has struggled, rookie point guard John Wall is playing better. Despite being held to nine points against Chicago, Wall has averaged 19.9 the last seven games.

He'll matchup for the first time against Curry, who has totaled 53 points the last two games. The second-year point guard scored 27 points in each of the two losses to Washington last season.

Curry had 20 points while Reggie Williams scored 25 off the bench Tuesday as the Warriors, who could not hold a nine-point first-half lead.

Among the NBA scoring leaders averaging 24.7 points, Golden State's Monta Ellis was held to 13 at Indiana. He's averaged 16.0 points during the four-game skid.

A day after Washington bought out the contract of veteran Mike Bibby, who played just two games since being traded to the Wizards last week, the club did the same with forward Al Thornton on Tuesday.

The Warriors are reportedly interested in the forward, who averaged 8.0 points and 3.2 rebounds in 49 games for the Wizards.

NASL-champion San Francisco Deltas fold after one season


NASL-champion San Francisco Deltas fold after one season

The dream is no more. 

San Francisco Deltas' CEO Brian Andres Helmick ended speculation on Friday when he released a statement announcing the end of the team after one season in the North American Soccer League -- a DII professional league in the USSF pyramid. 

The Deltas are fresh off claming the NASL's championship in front of a sold-out crowd at Kezar Stadium, But even that wasn't enough to save a franchise who admittedly was struggling to stay afloat. 

"We are closing down the San Francisco Deltas," Helmick wrote. "As many of you have said, this journey that started in 2015 has the makings of a movie with character-defining struggles, heroic moments, painful defeats, and overcoming seemingly impossible hurdles all culminating in a dream come true on Sunday, November 12th when the SF Deltas were crowned the national champions after defeating the New York Cosmos — arguably the most storied brand in U.S. Soccer history. I’ll never forget the scene of thousands of fans storming the field. Now that the celebration has come to an end, players and coaches have been released from their contracts. We will not leave any loose ends and everybody will be paid what they’re owed for 2017 — including players, coaches, staff, partners and vendors."

In 32 league games, the Deltas amassed a 14-12-6 record and advanced to the fourth round of the U.S. Open Cup tournament where they lost to the San Jose Earthquakes. 

"In hindsight we have not been perfect," Helmick said. "Far from it. We have learned so much from this adventure and we will begin organizing our thoughts and learnings that led to us to make this decision. Our hope is to share them for the benefit of others who are interested in developing the sport here in San Francisco or in other cities. I firmly believe that via transparency and collaboration we can improve the sport we all love."

In response to the Deltas news, the NASL released the following statement: 'In San Francisco, it’s unfortunate that the Deltas’ business plans did not materialize in the way they had hoped. We remain a big believer in the market, as evidenced by the atmosphere and crowd at The Championship Final earlier this month, and we still believe that the city deserves a professional soccer team. We are in active discussions with potential ownership groups and we aim to keep professional soccer in San Francisco in the future."

The Deltas experiment is the latest to test the viability of professional soccer in San Francisco. Last Fall, another group fronted by Zappos.com founder NIck Swimurn -- San Francisco Football Club -- attempted to start a team using AT&T Park as its home stadium as part of the United Soccer League. The project and application was pulled.