Warriors

Jackson says Warriors still have a lot to play for

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Jackson says Warriors still have a lot to play for

The Warriors are 20-29 and have 17 games left in theirseason. Two of their best players Stephen Curry and Andrew Bogut are hurt.Theyre not going to make the playoffs.Theyve got six rookies on their roster right now andseveral veterans who have been around the NBA block or two.Theyve also got very little incentive to win, consideringthe better they finish the harder it will be to keep their draft pick.So, what is there really to play for?
Well, thats not a great place to go with Warriors coachMark Jackson.To me, thats a losers mentality, a quitters mentality,Jackson said about just playing out the string for next season. If you allowthat to fester or invite it into the locker room, its going to bite you downthe road. And youll wonder why you gave birth to it duringadversity.Jackson is well aware that a segment of Warriors fans arerooting for the team to lose right now, so as to better their chances ofkeeping their pick. If the Warriors end up with the No. 1 through No.7 pick, theyll get to keep it. If its No. 8 or worse, it will be conveyed toUtah.Jacksons not having it.I know what this does is build character, Jackson said.It builds something that when we get it right people will wonder why. Andyoull have to rewind to these moments that we grabbed the rope and refusedto let go.There are tangible reasons why the last 17 games aremeaningful to the Warriors, too.The more playing time you can get for rookie Klay Thompson,the better. Or, what about getting a gauge on whether or not Charles Jenkinshas a future as the backup point guard?Theres also likely going to be a need for an additionalcenter for the 2012-13 season, so why not get a gander at Jeremy Tyler, MickellGladness and Keith Benson?We know who Klay is, Jackson said. Ive said before, fromDay 1, he couldnt make a move without traveling on this level. He also was notgood at putting the ball on the floor and making a play. Hes come so far wherehes very good at catching and making plays.With him, its continuing to get better. The one thing youdont want is for a young fella to get satisfied and to take his foot off thegas pedal.The way Jackson looks at it, he wouldnt be doing his job ifhe demanded any less of his team now that its out of the playoffrace.Im still looking to win and play our brand of basketball,Jackson said. The mindset is still the same, the principles are still thesame. Were asking a heck of a lot from our team right now. You look at Charles Id be shortchanging him if I asked him to do anything different than I askof Steph or Nate (Robinson).And, of course, theres also the issue of Curry and hisproblematic right ankle. The Warriors announced earlier this week that Currywouldnt play for two more weeks, and there is sentiment for him to remainsidelined for the rest of the season.NEWS: Curry shut down for next two weeks
Jackson is not in that camp; if Curry is healthy, he shouldplay.Hes paid to play, Jackson said. I dont know anybodythats 100 percent that just shuts it down. If thats the case, I dont wanthim on my team. What does David Lee have to gain right now? Hes out thereplaying, doing everything Im asking him to do.Ive seen pros shutting it down when it looks like youreplaying for nothing. Its during these times you make a loud statement, notjust to your teammates but anyone else.

A Warriors fantasy 13-man team from the past

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AP

A Warriors fantasy 13-man team from the past

Stephen Curry is a two time MVP. Kevin Durant is a one-time MVP and four-time scoring champ. Draymond Green is the reigning Defensive Player of the Year. Klay Thompson, owner of the game’s most picturesque jumper, once scored 60 points in 29 minutes.

The Warriors not only have reached the playoffs in five consecutive seasons for the first time since moving to California in 1962 but also own the single-season wins record and have won two championships over the last three seasons.

All of which explains why fans, athletes and coaches following the NBA tend to shower them with praise. They respect the coaching staff, are impressed with the front office and envy the roster.

Longtime fans know this is a completely new feeling. They recall so many past Warriors teams with sardonic fondness because, well, the bad old days in the Bay were a local joke.

As the team’s play-by-play man since 1995, Tim Roye remembers those days, and we discussed them on this week’s Warriors Insider Podcast. Specifically, I asked Roye to name his personal 13-man roster generated from Warriors between his arrival in ’95 and the drafting of Stephen Curry in 2009.

Roye’s draft picks, along with many of his other observations, are available on the podcast. Mine, which were not given on the podcast, are available here.

BACKCOURT/WINGS

In alphabetical order: Gilbert Arenas, Baron Davis, Monta Ellis, Tim Hardaway, Chris Mullin, Jason Richardson and Latrell Sprewell.

Arenas, taken in the second round of the 2001 draft, quickly became a local sensation. He was here for only two seasons and, despite the pleas of local fans, left for big money as a free agent. At his best, his scoring skill was unsurpassed.

Davis, stolen in a 2005 trade with Charlotte, gave the Warriors a much-needed shot of credibility the minute he walked through the door. Following a lot of bad Warriors deals, BD was the best player trade acquisition since Bernard King in 1980.

Ellis, selected sfrom a Mississippi high school in the second round of the 2005 draft, came to California as a shy teenager and eventually blossomed into electricity in sneakers. He was a wonderful scorer with crazy quicks and a deadly midrange J.

Hardaway, drafted out of UTEP in the first round, 14th overall in 1989, was the original crossover king, except he referred to it as the UTEP two-step. Difficult to contain and utterly fearless, he is a Hall of Famer in waiting.

Mullin, drafted out of St. John’s in the first round, seventh overall in 1985, Mullin was a fabulous shooter and a deft passer who became a five-time All-Star as a Warrior. His Hall of Fame ticket was punched in 2011.

Richardson, drafted from Michigan State in the first round, fifth overall in 2001, quickly became the team’s most exciting player. That he won the dunk contest as a rookie, and again the next season, provided a rare thrill for local fans.

Sprewell, drafted 24th overall out of Alabama in 1992, was popular until he jumped coach P.J. Carlesimo and was suspended and shipped out of town in 1997. Over a 19-year stretch ending in 2013, he was the team’s only All-Star. He made it three times.

FRONTCOURT

In alphabetical order: Andris Biedrins, Antawn Jamison, Stephen Jackson, Troy Murphy, Joe Smith.

Selected in the first round, 11th overall, in 2004, Biedrins was only 18 when he came to America. He had good hands, rebounded well and was developing into a solid center before he fell victim to confidence issues and the trappings of the good life.

Jamison, selected in a bizarre draft-day deal in 1998, was the best player on some wretched teams. A good rebounder and scorer -- he once had back-to-back 50-point games -- the power forward became an All-Star after he left the Warriors in 2003.

Jackson was picked up in a January 2007 trade with Indiana and it didn’t take long to see his value at both ends. The small forward who could play big makes this team for one primary reason: He stole Dirk Nowitzki’s soul in the 2007 playoffs.

Murphy was the second of two first-round picks in 2001, 14th overall. He wasn’t particularly athletic but he was an effective rebounder and a good shooter. He’d be a stretch-big, somewhere between Ryan Anderson and Mo Speights.

Smith was the team’s most recent No. 1 overall pick, in 1995. A natural power forward, he was named to the All-Rookie first team and was even better the next season. He faded in his third season, was traded and never reached full potential.

SIXTH MAN

Jamal Crawford. Easy call. A Warriors for only 54 games in 2008-09, that was plenty to see the three-time Sixth Man of the Year could deliver instant offense like few others.

Is it a great team? No. But it’s a playoff team. We needed 13 seasons of history, which feels like cheating until you consider the franchise went more than 10 years, from November 1994 to March 2005, without anyone honored so much as Player of the Week.

Klay Thompson randomly interviewed on local NYC news about scaffolding

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AP

Klay Thompson randomly interviewed on local NYC news about scaffolding

With a big break until their next game, the Warriors spent a couple days in New York City.

Klay Thompson spent part of his Monday walking around the city.

And as only Thompson could, he wound up appearing on a local news report. But he wasn't talking about basketball. Not even close.

Courtesy of Twitter user @MP_Trey, Thompson was interviewed on Fox 5 NY to talk about ... scaffolding.

"I usually observe if the piping and stuff is new. Sometimes, you know, something looks like it's been there a while, I try to avoid that," Thompson said in the report.

You can watch the odd video here: