Warriors

Marquese Chriss explains main area of focus while playing for Warriors

Marquese Chriss explains main area of focus while playing for Warriors

Despite the report that people within the Warriors organization have "petitioned" general manager Bob Myers to get him on the roster, Marquese Chriss is well aware that he might not open the regular season with the Dubs.

He's currently with Golden State on a non-guaranteed contract.

"I thank them for trusting me and bringing me into camp and giving me an opportunity to show what I can do," Chriss told reporters Wednesday after practice. "They're in a tough situation with their hard cap.

"But I'm just trying to make the most out of it, whether it be here or somewhere else. I just want to take whatever I learn here and build from it to help myself be a better player."

In order for Chriss to be in a Dubs uniform against the Clippers on Opening Night, the Warriors' front office would either need to cut Alfonzo McKinnie (his contract doesn't become fully guaranteed until early January) or trade Omari Spellman or Jacob Evans without acquiring a player in return.

The other option would be putting the 22-year-old on a two-way contract, but that would mean parting ways with either Damion Lee or Ky Bowman.

Plus, signing a two-way deal doesn't sound like something Chriss is planning on doing anytime soon.

"I don't know at this point. I want to be in the NBA right now," he said Wednesday. "If it comes down to it, that's something I would have to consider or something I would have to think about."

For now, the No. 8 overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft simply is focusing on his game and trying to contribute anyway possible.

"I play well in the DHO (dribble hand-off), I set screens, I pass the ball, I rebound," he told reporters. "I think the biggest thing is just getting the scorers open. We have amazing shooters and amazing scorers.

"Getting those guys the ball in the spots that they can score is the biggest thing for me. I think the screens I was setting (in the preseason opener against the Lakers), I kind of didn't have to. I'm not used to not having to set screens and people still making shots.

"It's different. Just getting in the way of people is enough sometimes."

Chriss -- who fouled out in 14 minutes -- was called for multiple moving screens last Saturday.

He clearly was told by the coaching staff to focus on screening, and he took it to heart. Let's see how he adjusts in Thursday's preseason game against the Timberwolves at Chase Center.

If he impresses again, the pressure on Dubs management will continue to grow.

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Raiders' vibe hasn't changed as playoff hunt intensifies amid win streak

Raiders' vibe hasn't changed as playoff hunt intensifies amid win streak

ALAMEDA -- As the 2019 NFL season heads toward the home stretch, the Raiders have gone from punchline to playoff contender thanks to grit, resilience and some Jon Gruden magic.

Most teams that have traversed a similar path as the Raiders might alter their approach with the games meaning exponentially more. The Silver and Black were picked to win somewhere between four and six games to start the season, and that was before Antonio Brown auditioned for "The Jerry Springer Show" with help of a guerilla Instagram campaign to get himself released

Oakland won its season-opener buoyed by an us-against-the-world mentality, but the Raiders dropped their next two, hitting rock bottom in a 34-14 loss to the Vikings in Week 3. Some teams might have fractured and folded, but the Raiders responded to win five of their next seven games to head into Week 12 occupying the No. 6 seed in the AFC and just a half-game back of the Chiefs for the AFC West lead.

The Raiders have surprised a lot of people in jumping into the playoff race, but the feeling around the Silver and Black is status quo.

"We've always been a group that has great energy," quarterback Derek Carr said. "Whether it was OTAs, workouts, meetings, training camp, we've had great energy all the time. The fact that there's still great energy in the locker room, that does not surprise me. When we lost a couple games in a row at the beginning of the season, the same energy was still there. It doesn't surprise me it's the same now. We don't get into wins and losses, we don't get into stats and all those kind of things -- Player of the Week and those things because it really doesn't matter until the end of the season.

"The only thing that matters is that we keep doing our same process and that we love what we are doing and who we are doing it with. If we can maintain that thought, that single mindset, the rest takes care of itself."

That early thumping in Minnesota could have defined the Raiders' season. Instead, they went to work, believing in the people in the locker room and the plan Gruden put in place. They survived their five-game road trip to return home at 3-4. and then protected the Coliseum, winning three in a row to move to 6-4. 

They've been hit hard by injuries and roster turnover. But they didn't get down or take their focus off the task at hand. They put their arms around each other and kept their heads down, focused on a singular goal.

"Absolutely," Carr said when asked if the wins have rewarded the team's faith in what they are trying to do. "Because then you start to see like, yeah what we are doing is right. When we do what our coaches say, when we execute our assignments, when everyone just does their job everyone gets to benefit from it.

"As long as our guys can keep a level head -- which they will, we'll make sure of that with those young guys but as long as we keep a level head, it's nice to see our process be rewarded."

That process has seen Carr put together an efficient season that mirrors his 2016 campaign. The offensive line has kept him upright, rookie running back Josh Jacobs has put together a stellar first season but is hungry for more and the defense, ravaged by injuries across the board, has banded together to help secure big wins with fourth-quarter stops.

[RELATED: How Raiders' Waller alters mindset to beat heavy coverage]

The playoffs are within the Raiders' sights.

Even the AFC West title is a possibility as 2019 draws to a close.

Despite where the Raiders find themselves, Gruden is making sure everyone stays the course.

"We're just grinding," Gruden said. "We're in the midst of a fight. We know what we have to try to do to win another game. We got to play better. Play better in all three phases and keep working our hearts out to improve."

Expectations have been met and passed. Now, the Raiders must stay laser-focused on their process to achieve a goal most beleive impossible during the dog days of summer.

Warriors vs. Utah Jazz watch guide: Lineups, injuries, player usage

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Warriors vs. Utah Jazz watch guide: Lineups, injuries, player usage

With sore backsides and a shrunken roster, the Warriors conclude their four-game road trip Friday night with two particularly difficult challenges.

There is the thin air of Salt Lake City (elevation 4,226 feet), and then there is the smothering defense of the Utah Jazz.

Pregame coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 5 o’clock, with tipoff from Vivint Smart Home Arena scheduled for 6:10.

The Warriors (3-13) are coming off their worst loss in 426 games under coach Steve Kerr, a 142-94 thrashing in Dallas. They were down to eight players after All-Star forward Draymond Green was a late scratch for that game. Green also will be on the sideline Friday night.

Utah (9-5) is bringing its typically stingy defense, holding opponents to an NBA-low 100.6 points per game. The Jazz is No. 1 in defensive rating (100.2), No. 2 in 3-point percentage defense (31.1 percent) and No. 3 in overall field-goal percentage defense (42.3).

 

PROJECTED LINEUPS

Warriors

F Glenn Robinson III
F Eric Paschall
C Willie Cauley-Stein
G Alec Burks
G Ky Bowman

Jazz

F Bojan Bogdanovich
F Royce O’Neale
C Rudy Gobert
G Donovan Mitchell
G Mike Conley

 

INJURY REPORT

Warriors: G Stephen Curry (left hand fracture), G Jacob Evans III (left adductor strain), F Draymond Green (right heel soreness), G Damion Lee (right hand non-displaced fracture), F Kevon Looney (neuropathy), G D’Angelo Russell (right thumb sprain), F Alen Smailagic and G Klay Thompson (right ACL rehab) are listed as out. Looney and Smailagic are on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Jazz: F Ed Davis (left fibula fracture) is listed as out.

 

ROTATION OUTLOOK

Warriors: The last thing any NBA team wants is to go into one of the high-altitude cities (Denver or Salt Lake City) with an extremely limited bench. That could result in some strange lineup combinations for the Warriors ... Bowman is coming off his strongest game of the season, with 16 points, two assists and zero turnovers in 32 minutes. He could approach 40 minutes in this game. He is up to 20 active NBA days ... Paschall played a season-high 40 minutes at Dallas, where he spent time at both forward spots. That likely will happen again, when the Warriors play Omari Spellman with either Marquese Chriss or Cauley-Stein ... Burks and Robinson played well on Tuesday at Memphis and poorly the next night in Dallas. For the Warriors to have any chance of staying close, they need to bounce back ... Tonight’s available player count: Eight.