Warriors

Draymond Green has ambitious plan for Warriors rookie Eric Paschall

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USATSI

Draymond Green has ambitious plan for Warriors rookie Eric Paschall

SAN FRANCISCO -- With the top two NBA Rookie of Year candidates on opposite sides Monday night when the Warriors face the Memphis Grizzlies, Draymond Green has an idea that would give his teammate an edge.

At 6-foot-6, 250 pounds, Eric Paschall needed only one-quarter of the season to show he can handle the role of being an “undersized” power forward but also be effective as a small forward.

Paschall’s production as a rookie is comparable to that of Memphis’ Ja Morant, a 6-foot-2, 175-pound point guard.

Green believes Paschall’s mentality can go beyond a mere two positions.

“One thing I’ve been trying to get him to do is learn all the positions,” Green said Monday after shootaround. “When you can learn all five positions, it just helps you create more value.”

Learning the roles of all five positions, unlike being able to play them all, provides a deeper glimpse into the team dynamic. As a point guard, it’s Morant’s responsibility.

For a forward, however, a full understanding of every position is what can separate the good from the very good, and the very good from the extraordinary.

“For a player like E, at such an early point in his career, if he can master learning all five positions, with his versatility, that just continues to add to the value that he’s creating for himself,” Green said.

Green’s goal is to do his part to tutor Paschall in hopes the rookie ultimately becomes a better version of himself. Paschall has a superior knack for scoring, but he trails Green’s innate ability in such areas as playmaking and rebounding,

Moreover, it is unlikely Paschall will ever play all-around defense at Draymond’s elite level.

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Paschall ranks second among rookies in scoring, averaging 17.1 points per game. Morant, at 18.6 per game, leads all rookie scorers. Paschall is shooting 50.7 percent from the field, while Morant is at 45.7. Paschall has the edge in rebounding (5.3 per game to 3.2), with Morant leading in assists (6.4 to 1.8).

What’s most notable about comparing the two in the ROY race is expectations. Morant was chosen No. 2 overall. Paschall was the 41st player selected.

They are the frontrunners for the award, with Miami’s Kendrick Nunn close behind. Preseason favorite Zion Williamson is rehabbing after knee surgery and has missed the first seven weeks of New Orleans' season.

Steph Curry omits LeBron James, Kevin Durant from all-time starting five

Steph Curry omits LeBron James, Kevin Durant from all-time starting five

When Stephen Curry's career is all said and done, there's a good chance many of the current younger generations of NBA fans will include him in their all-time starting five. They have seen the game evolve in front of their very own eyes, and no player was more responsible for that transition than the greatest shooter ever.

But Curry's career isn't over yet. Not even close. And as things currently stand, even he wouldn't include himself in his all-time starting five.

On the most recent episode of Showtime's "All the Smoke" with Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes, Curry was asked which five players he would nominate for that lofty designation, and it's pretty tough to disagree with his selections.

Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Tim Duncan and Shaquille O'Neal? Safe to say that squad would be tough to beat. Of course, if there's one thing that five-man unit is lacking, it's probably a lack of perimeter shooting. Maybe that's how Curry eventually fits in.

It's worth noting that Curry didn't include LeBron James on his list. Of course, if reported rivalries are to be believed, perhaps that explains the omission. Same goes for Kevin Durant, who recently left Curry out of his top-six hardest players to guard in the league. Are these sour grapes being thrown back and forth?

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It's certainly possible in the modern NBA, but a far more likely explanation is that James and Durant, like Curry, aren't finished yet.

Warriors send Jacob Evans down to G League in order to regain rhythm

Warriors send Jacob Evans down to G League in order to regain rhythm

SAN FRANCISCO -- Jacob Evans has held out hope for improvement for much of the season. For the time being, he'll try to reach the goal in the G League.

The Warriors guard's latest odyssey to Santa Cruz is expected to last until Sunday, providing Evans an opportunity to get more on-court time during an injury-plagued season. 

"This will give him a chance to play bigger minutes," Warriors coach Steve Kerr. "To develop a rhythm."

With the demotion, Evans will miss Friday's matchup against the Indiana Pacers in San Francisco. Instead, he will play Friday evening against the Wisconsin Herd at Kaiser Permanente Arena and Sunday's matchup against the South Bay Lakers. He'll then rejoin the Warriors on the team's upcoming five-game road trip, which starts Tuesday against the Philadelphia 76ers. 

Evans' second season in the NBA has been marred by injury.  A week into the season, he strained his left adductor, costing him 21 games. Last week, he missed three more games after suffering a concussion. All the while, he's shooting just 31 percent from the field and has been supplanted in the rotation by rookie Jordan Poole.

"These last few weeks have been tough, even before injury," Kerr said. He hasn't really been able to get himself going, we haven't been able to help him get going. We feel like this is a perfect time for him to get some playing time."

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Evans was drafted in 2018 for his defensive acumen. He's struggled to find offensive success this season, averaging just four points despite averaging 10 more minutes per game. However, Kerr remains confident in Evans' long-term development. 

"He's a big, strong, smart defender. He's picked up a lot in his year and a half in the league," Kerr said. "So he's a guy I can trust and count on defensively. But like everybody in this disjointed season, it's been tough for him to find a niche."