Editor’s note: Kerith Burke, NBC Sports Bay Area’s Warriors reporter, will take you inside the two-time defending NBA champions as only she can each Friday with the Ask Kerith Mailbag. Send her a question on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #askkerith
Well ... hello from Los Angeles, the last place the Warriors wanted to be again.
The Clippers were the better team in Game 5, and now the series is back at their house. The Clippers have hope. Doc Rivers said Game 5 felt like the first time they were “us” in the series, meaning they were playing their game instead of letting the Warriors dictate things.
Draymond Green said postgame: “We just didn’t start the game with the type of defensive intensity that we need to, and then they got going. Then you’re stuck staying on more shooters instead of pulling in. We gave up 37 points in the first quarter, and that set the tone for the rest of the game.”
It’s tough to win close-out games when the other team is playing for its survival, and knowing the Rockets are waiting made it enticing to look ahead.
As the Warriors prepare for Game 6 (airing on NBC Sports Bay Area and the MyTeams app!), pride will be a big factor tonight.
@sammymac21 Hey @KerithBurke, with the @andrewbogut experiment looking like a great move, could we see this continue for the next couple of seasons? Us Aussies get to watch him up close and personal in the NBL and then jump back to the NBA for the finals stretch? #askKerith
Andrew Bogut has been outstanding for the Warriors, and it’s possible other teams are looking at the situation and thinking they could try it, too. Teams copy what other teams do for success all the time, and if that means looking to Australia for talent when it’s time to add roster depth for postseason runs, now there is a blueprint.
Bogut deserves a ton of credit. His situation specifically is why this worked: His relationship with the Warriors, his familiarity with the players and schemes, his fitness level after the NBL season, and his willingness to uproot his life. I don’t think just anyone could have re-entered the NBA so seamlessly.
Bogut left the door open to doing the same thing next season, and even gave a little smile when he said it could start a trend. But no decisions are made yet. He’s going back to the Sydney Kings to play next season, and the Warriors will be a different team. Their needs at center might not be the same.
It’s a fun idea to picture Bogut getting a third go-round with Golden State, but that possibility is too far down the road to predict.
@cacavanah How is Demarcus doing. Would love to hear from him.
@shorespeak Where is DeMarcus? Rehabbing locally or other? Can we expect to see him on the bench/at the games or, if he doesn’t re-sign, have we simply seen the last of him?
Via IG, @ikman.preet: Is Boogie Cousins with the team and rehabbing?
DeMarcus Cousins has been with the Warriors at practice and film study. He’s been working out with team trainers. He’s around, and he’s being supported by his teammates as he goes through his quad injury.
He has not been available for interviews, so I don’t want to speak to his emotions. We probably can guess what it’s like to have an injury snatch away the moment you’ve been working for all season.
As for DeMarcus’ future with the Warriors, my last mailbag touched on that, and included some insight from Warriors Insider Monte Poole.
@Jwonder64 Wondering why we don’t see more of Damion Lee?
Damion is a two-way player for the Warriors, meaning he spends time between the G-League and the NBA. When the Warriors signed Bogut with the 15th and final roster spot ahead of the playoffs, Damion’s chance to earn that spot ended.
He’s not on the Warriors' playoff roster, and the G-League season is over, so that’s why he feels out of sight. The Warriors like Damion, and he's still around the team in an unofficial capacity.
@MusicMost Hey KB, Ron Adams is known as a our defensive guru. His success undeniable and well credited. Why isn't he mentioned for open coaching jobs? Does he have an interest? Thanks. #askKerith
There’s something to be said for being a highly regarded assistant coach for decades. You get to go about your business without being the face of a team or dealing with the daily media obligations.
He certainly could be a head coach if he wanted to, but I think Ron Adams has carved a nice niche for himself in roles that challenge him without all the other “stuff.”
Adams is 72 now, and in the link above, he describes his reasoning for taking the assistant path in the NBA. His job with the Warriors, however long he’d like it to last, is expected to be his last.
Via IG, @mixpixels: #askKerith Watched your Roadtrippin’ podcast with Quinn Cook and Austin Rivers. Good stuff. My Q: Do you get to have a special handshake with Quinn? Or is that a teammate thing?
We do not have a special handshake! But Quinn is a creature of habit, and now I am too so nothing changes on game day, so we have something.
When I’m in the hallway at halftime waiting for my Jarron Collins interview, Quinn always gives me a regular-person handshake when he walks by. It must be with the right hand, with the proper slap.
Via IG, @bosleyjeff: What is next for Oracle Arena?
Oracle still will be an entertainment venue once the Warriors relocate to Chase Center.
When I recently drove by the arena, I noticed the band Maná is playing Oracle on Nov. 30. My high school Spanish teacher, Sra. Rodriguez, loved them, and she used their songs for vocabulary lessons. I remember the song “Rayando el Sol,” and that happens to be the name of Maná's tour!
This week’s goes out to the Pacific Ocean. Klay Thompson jumped in the water before Game 4, and it was like Prince's version of the purifying powers of Lake Minnetonka. Klay scored 27 points in the first half, starting the game 7-of-7 shooting from the field.
Klay tends to perform well in LA, he’s a SoCal kid, and if he comes up big in Game 6, “Did you jump in the ocean?” for sure will be a postgame question. Maybe he should take some beach sand home in a little bottle.