American Warriors: Top five Dubs to don red, white and blue for Team USA


American Warriors: Top five Dubs to don red, white and blue for Team USA

In the coming weeks, Team USA will look to win its third straight FIBA Basketball World Cup. The test will be difficult as some of the NBA's top players have chosen not to participate in the tournament.

In recent years, the Warriors have had a number of players participate in international competition with much success. To take you down memory lane, here's the top five Warriors to don the red, white and blue.

Kevin Durant

Durant has been a part of Team USA since 2007, but he came into his own on the international stage just as he was heading west to the Bay Area. A month after signing with Golden State, Durant led Team USA to a gold medal in the 2016 Olympics in Rio, averaging 19.4 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists in 28.6 minutes.

Over his international career, he has averaged 19.3 points and 5.4 rebounds while shooting 53.6 percent from the field and 49 percent from 3-point range en route to two Olympic gold medals.

Chris Mullin

As a member of the original "Dream Team", Mullin averaged 12.9 points, 3.6 assists and 1.8 steals, helping Team USA win the gold medal in the 1992 Olympics alongside Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley and Magic Johnson. Mullin's gold medal in 1992 wasn't his first. Alongside Jordan, he captured basketball's highest prize during the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, averaging 11.6 points, 2.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists in eight games.

Klay Thompson

Along with fellow Splash Brother Stephen Curry, Thompson helped lead Team USA to a gold medal in the 2014 FIBA World Championships in Spain.

In nine games, he averaged 12.7 points, while shooting 52.3 percent from the field, including an 18-point performance in a win over Finland. Thompson followed his 2014 performance up with a gold medal performance in the 2016 Olympics.

In eight games, Thompson averaged 9.9 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 21 minutes.

Stephen Curry

Curry helped lead Team USA to the gold medal in the 2014 World Championships, averaging 10.7 points per game while shooting 43.8 percent from the 3-point line.

Four years prior, alongside future teammates Andre Iguodala and Durant, he helped Team USA win its first world championship gold medal in nearly a decade. However, Curry has yet to win an Olympic gold medal as he sat out the 2016 Olympics to rest after an extended playoff run.

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Andre Iguodala

Iguodala helped Team USA secure a gold medal in the 2010 FIBA World Cup, averaging 5.7 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.9 assists and a team-leading 1.8 steals while shooting 58.8 percent from the field.

Two years later, he helped Team USA win its second straight Olympic gold medal in 2012 alongside LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Durant.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr 'hopeful' Draymond Green will play vs. Jazz

Warriors coach Steve Kerr 'hopeful' Draymond Green will play vs. Jazz

Draymond Green's presence likely wouldn't have made a difference in the ultimate outcome of the Warriors' loss to the Mavericks on Wednesday, but it's hard to imagine them losing by 48 if he had played.

Now, as Golden State heads to Utah for the final game of its road trip, the Dubs have their fingers crossed that Green will be able to play against the Jazz on Friday.

"Hopefully we get Draymond back," coach Steve Kerr said on 95.7 The Game's "Damon, Ratto & Kolsky" show Thursday evening. "We'll see. I talked to him today and he was feeling better, so I'm hopeful that he can play tomorrow."

Green sat out the loss to Dallas with right heel soreness. Whether or not he is able to face the Jazz, Kerr is of the belief that the Warriors will be far more competitive than they were the last time out.

"But I think the day off today will help, I think the embarrassment of last night will help, and we'll have a shootaround tomorrow and I think we'll be ready to play," he continued. "I know our guys were embarrassed last night. It was the first time all season where I really felt like we sort of lost our spirit and our energy, so I know we'll have that back tomorrow and I'm looking forward to playing."

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Utah (9-5) currently is tied for fifth in the Western Conference and boasts the league's best scoring defense. Against Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert and Co., the Warriors can use all the help they can get, but at least if Green plays, the won't have to worry about the spirit and energy part.

Warriors broadcaster Jim Barnett describes racism Bill Russell faced


Warriors broadcaster Jim Barnett describes racism Bill Russell faced

Warriors color commentator Jim Barnett has seen a lot during his time following the NBA, but perhaps what sticks out most were his experiences with Boston Celtics legend Bill Russell and the racism the Hall of Famer had to endure. 

During an appearance on the "Runnin' Plays" podcast, Barnett -- who was drafted and played one season in Boston -- shared a story about the time Russell was given a key to the city just before a game the Celtics played in a Southern state.

Following the game, the black players on the team were denied entry into a hotel because of the color of their skin. In response, Russell returned the key to the town's mayor. 

The scenario was just one of many for the prominently black Celtics of the 1960s, according to Barnett. 

"They didn't sell out in the Boston Garden," Barnett said on the first episode of "Runnin' Plays". "They sold out in the Boston Garden for the hockey team - the Boston Bruins - every game was sold out. But not the Boston Celtics. It was a racist town."  

The face of the team was Russell, who became a civil rights leader in his own right. In 1961, he staged a boycott of a game in Lexington, Ky. after a city restaurant wouldn't serve his black teammates. In 1966, he became the first black coach in the history of professional sports.

By 1967, he -- along with basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown -- led a summit to support boxer Muhammad Ali after he refused to fight in the Vietnam War.  

However, the climate of the time affected how Russell interacted with fans. 

"I remember one time, this businessman asked for an autograph," Barnett said. "He said, 'if I weren't Bill Russell of the Boston Celtics, I'd be just another N-word to him.' 

Barnett added that the NBA capped how many non-whites could be on an active roster. 

"There was a quota," Barnett said. "You couldn't have more than two or three blacks. I know that for a fact." 

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As for his interactions with Russell and his black teammates, Barnett -- a white man -- said he didn't have any quandaries working alongside his teammates. 

"We didn't have any problems," the guys I played with and against, they were there to make a living in the NBA just like I was and we were all the same."