Jordan Bell

Draymond defends Bell's garbage time alley-oop off backboard to himself

Draymond defends Bell's garbage time alley-oop off backboard to himself

With just under three minutes to go and the Warriors leading by 25 points, Steve Kerr put the end of the bench into the game.

Somehow, with the game in control, rookie Jordan Bell found a way to produce the highlight of the night.

After Bell got a piece of Dwight Powell's shot, JaVale McGee batted the ball ahead. With no one in front of him, the rookie tossed the ball off the backboard and threw down a dunk. The sequence left his Warriors teammates flabergasted. But Bell may have broken an unwritten rule about showboating in a blowout game.

After the game, Draymond Green was not having it with possible criticism of Bell.

"Listen man, when you get on the basketball floor, I don't care if you get out there with two minutes to go up 25 or with two minutes to go down 25, somebody is evaluating you. So you gotta play the game just like it's tied up or if you're up four or if you're down four. You gotta play the game the same way. Somebody is evaluating you. So if you want to throw it off the backboard, feel free and dunk the ball. He got an And One. It was a great play. So, I got no message for him. Do what you do. Play basketball. That's what he did. I don't get all up into the whole 'Ah man, they're winning by this much, that's bad.' Says who? Dunk the ball. What's the difference between if he threw it off the backboard and dunked it as opposed to grabbing it and dunking it? It's a dunk," Green told reporters in Dallas after the Warriors' 133-130 win.

Green was then asked what he thought of the play, regardless of game situation.

"Great play. Great play. Amazing. Did you see it? It was dope. He got an And One too. He missed the free throw though. We gotta talk about that. That's my message for him. Make the free throw," Green said.

Kerr reportedly apologized to Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle after the game. Green commented on that.

"Steve's the coach. I'm not. That's not my problem," Green said.

Draymond wasn't the only member of the Green family defending Bell. His mom, Mary Babers-Green was on Twitter defending the rookie.

https://twitter.com/BabersGreen/status/922660243921874945

With Green listed as doubtful, expect Warriors to rely on rookie Jordan Bell

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AP

With Green listed as doubtful, expect Warriors to rely on rookie Jordan Bell

After getting a rude “Welcome to the NBA” facial from Rockets guard Eric Gordon in his debut Tuesday night, Warriors rookie Jordan Bell stands to get a more legitimate baptism Friday night in New Orleans.

That’s where Pelicans All-Stars Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins will be waiting, eager to abuse the new guy.

With starting power forward Draymond Green listed as doubtful with a strained left knee -- MRI test results were negative -- Bell can expect significant minutes when the Warriors and Pelicans meet at Smoothie King Center.

Aware Green’s availability is in question, Bell sees what’s ahead in Davis and Cousins, as they both possess skills that rank among the top five big men.

“I’m definitely excited about that,” Bell said Wednesday. “(They are) some of the best bigs in the league, so I’m definitely excited to get tested against that.”

Warriors coach Steve Kerr generally avoids tinkering with his set rotations, in which case David West and JaVale McGee would continue to come off the bench at center. Of the other “bigs” on the roster, Bell is most likely to start if Green is unable.

Bell played 12 minutes in the opener, and they were in slots that typically go to McGee, who never left the bench against Houston. Citing the matchups created by the Rockets’ smallish lineups, Kerr opted for the 6-foot-8, 225-pound Bell over the 7-foot, 270-pound McGee.

That will change Friday, regardless of Green’s status, as both Bell and McGee will be needed against Davis and Cousins, both of whom possess wing spans over 7 feet. Only Bell is suited to play power forward or center, and the staff is coaching him at both positions.

“At the 4, I have to be more of a facilitator, like (Green) is,” Bell said. “Some plays (Kerr) has me doing the same things Draymond does. Sometimes he has me bring the ball up in practice. Calling plays, putting me in positions on the elbows to make the right pass, make the right read.

“When I’m at the 5, I have to be more of an aggressor, a more physical guy on the court, focusing on rebounding and finishing around the rim.”

It’s exceedingly rare for a second-round draft pick to start a game in his first week as an NBA player. The Warriors believe Bell can handle it. So in the case of Green being held out, it wouldn’t be a surprise if the rookie’s name is called.

 

Say hello to Warriors rookie Jordan Bell: Football fanatic, music lover and more

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USATSI

Say hello to Warriors rookie Jordan Bell: Football fanatic, music lover and more

OAKLAND -- He’s a rookie who grew up in Long Beach, went to the University of Oregon and was selected by the Warriors in the second round of the 2017 NBA draft.

Jordan Bell is 22 years old, the baby of five siblings raised by a single mother. Inasmuch as he owns a pit bull, Prince, it seems logical that his favorite NBA player is his new teammate, Draymond Green.

The Warriors like what they have seen of Bell thus far, so it’s as good a time as any to learn a few things about the rookie.

--He’s a Dallas Cowboys fan. He was a Raiders fan, then a New York Giants fan and eventually, with goading from his family, settled on Cowboys.

--As a youngster, he was more into football than basketball.

“I just really started playing basketball in high school. I always played at the park, but I never thought to myself that I wanted to be a basketball player. Not until high school, when I had a growth spurt, about four inches over one summer. That made me the tallest dude in my class, so I thought I might as well give this basketball thing a try. Once I started playing, I started loving it. I stopped playing football for a while. And then I realized I love basketball way more than football. “

--He loves, loves, loves music, says he listens to it “all the time,” and that his favorite rapper is an easy call: Kendrick Lamar.

“Before Kendrick came a long, I just liked music, period.”

He’s willing to offer his personal take on the top-five rappers, all time.

“In no order, Tupuc. Biggie. Kendrick. Eminem. Jay-Z. That’s just my preference though. If I could add a few more, I’d add Nas, Andre Three Stacks (aka Andre 3000), Lil Wayne. That’s my top eight. I also love J. Cole. He’s a rapper that older people can listen to. “But I actually listen to R&B more than I do hip-hop.”

This is when Bell points out more favorites, including Chris Brown, as well as old-school artists Musiq Soulchild, Maxwell, Anthony Hamilton and the late Luther Vandross.

--Coming from the structured environment under coach Dana Altman at Oregon, Bell was more than a bit surprised at the relatively laid back atmosphere around the Warriors during the offseason.

“Everybody is real nonchalant. They seem to have a lot of trust in their players. They don’t make you come in; anything you want to do is like, optional. Even for me, as a rookie. I didn’t expect that. I thought they’d have a schedule of what days I had to work out. But it’s real . . . the ball is in your court.

“At Oregon, they checked on our classes every single day. Our coaches checked the classes. It was very strict. If you’re not on time, you’re running after practice. They’re very serious over there.”

--He is finding it rather easy to adapt to the Bay Area, and is enjoying the dining options.

“It’s a kind of like Southern California in some ways. But I like Mexican food. I like to find hole-in-the-wall kind of places. There’s a taco truck right next to my building (in Oakland) that’s really good.”

--Being someone with a relish for playing defense, he has identified players that pose special challenges for a defender.

“Honestly, two of them are on this team, KD and Steph. KD is a serious matchup problem. It’s crazy. How do you defend that? You can’t defend it. Even if you’re his size and you move like him, you still couldn’t do anything about it. But nobody is his size and also moves like him. He’s what, 7 (feet)? Shoots like a guard, moves like a guard, handles like a guard, is athletic and gets to the rim. Crazy.

“But I definitely watch all different types of players, like Chris Paul, James (Harden) and a lot of others.”