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


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.”

Warriors need vets to bounce back against young Suns


Warriors need vets to bounce back against young Suns

The Warriors have lost three of their last four games, their roster is in shambles and, still, they look like pure gold in contrast to the Suns team they’re facing Saturday night in Phoenix.

Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6 o’clock, with tipoff scheduled for 7:05.

Reeling from the absences of Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson, the Warriors (52-17) showed plenty of the scrap in losing to the Kings on Friday in Oakland but couldn’t get much offense from their veterans.

The Suns (19-51) are having the worst season since 1968-69, their inaugural season. They’ve lost seven in a row, 16 of their last 17 and 21 of their last 23.


Warriors by 3


Quinn Cook vs. Elfrid Payton: Payton bolted to a 16-point first quarter and scored 29 the last time he faced the Warriors. Quinn is coming off a career-high 25-point game. With teams relying on diminished rosters, whichever of the two young PGs can set a tone gives his team an advantage.


Warriors: G Omri Casspi (R ankle sprain), G Stephen Curry (R ankle tweak), F Kevin Durant (R rib soreness), G Pat McCaw (L wrist fracture) and G Klay Thompson (R thumb fracture) are listed as out.

Suns: G Devin Booker (R hand sprain) and F Alan Williams (R meniscus tear) are listed as questionable. G Brandon Knight (L ACL tear) is listed as out.


Warriors: 7-3.

Suns: 1-9.


Tony Brothers (crew chief), Jacyn Goble, James Williams


The Warriors won the first of four meetings this season, 129-83 on Feb. 12 at Oracle Arena. They swept all four games last season and are 12-1 against the Suns in the Steve Kerr era.


MOTIVATED VETS: Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, Zaza Pachulia, David West and Nick Young, expected to generate offense, combined to shoot 19-of-59 (32.2 percent) in a five-point loss Friday. They must be better; they can’t be much worse. Phoenix leads the NBA in points allowed.

THE BIG MEN: JaVale McGee started nine straight games at center, but Pachulia started the last two. The Suns are long up front, so McGee could be in line for a start or more minutes. In addition, Damian Jones, the team’s other 7-footer, also could get playing time.

STREAKING WITH THREES: The Suns own the longest active streak of games with at least one 3-point make (1,128). The Warriors are No. 2 (1,121). Both streaks are endangered. Curry, Thompson and Durant are out for the Warriors. Booker will either sit out or play with a splint on his shooting hand.

Cook gives injured Warriors 'huge boost' in anomalous loss

Cook gives injured Warriors 'huge boost' in anomalous loss

OAKLAND -- If Quinn Cook plays at anything close to the level he performed Friday night against the Kings, the Warriors should avoid any catastrophic stumbling in the absence of their top three scorers.

They stumbled plenty in a 98-93 loss to Sacramento, but not because of Cook. The two-way player who has spent most of the season with G-League Santa Cruz scored a team-high 25 points, shot 10-of-13 from the field and played respectable defense.

He did more than could have been reasonably expected.

“I felt like this was coming,” coach Steve Kerr said. “He was fantastic. He really lit it up and gave us a huge boost.”

The Warriors ran into problems elsewhere, shared among the usually reliable veterans who need to be particularly reliable in the absence of Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.

Usual starters Draymond Green and Zaza Pachulia combined to shoot 6-of-20.

Usual reserves Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, David West and Nick Young shot a collective 13-of-39.

In the second half, when Warriors mustered only 34 points -- a season-low for any half -- the six vets combined to take 32 shots and missed 24.

Those are atrocious numbers and they explain what went wrong in a game that was there for the taking.

They’re also an anomaly.

“We just couldn’t get anything going,” Green said. “But we got some good shots. We got ‘Dre on a couple of pull-ups in the lane, I got a couple open shots, Nick got a couple open shots, Zaza got a couple open ones. D-West had one pop in and out. (Kevon Looney) had two pop in and out.

“We just got cold. But hopefully those shots will fall tomorrow.”

West, returning after missing four games with a cyst on his right arm, was 1-of-6 from the field. He came into this game as a 60.8-percent shooter this season.

Igoudala was 4-of-10; he shot 70 percent over the previous 10 games. Young was 5-of-15, well below his 44-percent shooting this season. Livingston’s 3-of-8 shooting is uncharacteristic of someone shooting at least 50 percent for four years running.

If history is any indication, Green (5-of-14) and Pachulia (1-of-6) are not going continue to miss at the rate they did in this game, the first this season in which the Warriors were without all three of their top scorers.

If history is any indication, the Warriors can’t be counted on to score 34 points on 27.3-percent shooting in the second half of a game.

“I loved how our guys battled,” Kerr said. “They really competed well and made some big plays. We just couldn’t get the ball to go down quite enough in the second half.”

That’s going to change, perhaps as soon as Saturday night in Phoenix, were the Suns are playing to lose.

So if Cook plays steady basketball, the Warriors will fall off and their fans won’t become a basket case while waiting for the three shooters. The Warriors surely believe that.

“He really showed up. I’ve been waiting on that Quinn,” Green said. “We needed that. It was great for him to come out and play like that. And most importantly, his shots were falling. Since he’s been playing (more often) he’s been playing well, but his shots weren’t really falling. But tonight, they fell for him.”

They won’t always fall at a rate of 77 percent. They won’t have to once his teammates drop in a few more of their own shots.