Warriors

NBA rumors: Warriors won't shop D'Angelo Russell before trade deadline

NBA rumors: Warriors won't shop D'Angelo Russell before trade deadline

If you're a Warriors fan and are hoping D'Angelo Russell gets traded before the Feb. 6 deadline, you won't like the latest intel.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe discussed D-Lo's situation with Golden State on Sunday.

Wojnarowski: "If you are going to move D'Angelo Russell, it is in a big deal. To me, a scenario where he could move is (with) that number one pick. The Warriors could have the No. 1 overall pick -- you got to see where it is.

"He's not available, (but) that would be like a Bradley Beal level player. You're (the Wizards) getting a potential cornerstone pick and a 23-year-old All-Star. I think there are very few scenarios in the league where that's available to them (the Warriors).

"It doesn't make much sense for Golden State to be out there canvassing the league. Wait until the season's over, see what it looks like. I know this -- they're not going to be making calls on D'Angelo Russell. People may call them.

"I think D'Angelo is playing this season, at the very least, and maybe even beyond in Golden State. He's still a very valuable asset."

Lowe: "There's a healthy debate within the league about whether D'Angelo Russell has positive or negative trade value on that max contract. The bottom line is, D'Angelo plus whatever that pick ends up being -- that's where you let the playoffs play out and see if they create a new star that wants out or a new situation goes haywire.

"And whatever the best deal for D'Angelo Russell that exists now or in February, will be there again in the summer. There's no rush to do this."

Correct. Totally agree. Yes sir, correct and correct again.

Unless a team makes an offer they simply can't pass up, the Warriors should wait until the NBA Draft Lottery in mid-May determines their draft position.

The Dubs (5-23) currently have the worst record in the league. If they finish the season in that spot, they would have a 14 percent chance of landing the No. 1 overall pick, and automatically would get a top-five selection.

To Lowe's point about a star demanding a trade -- if the Bucks lose earlier than expected and Giannis Antetokounmpo declines the supermax, Milwaukee could be forced to trade the Greek Freak. If that comes to fruition, the Warriors need to have as many assets as possible at their disposal.

Likewise, what if Joel Embiid or Ben Simmons demand a trade from Philadelphia? Are your wheels spinning yet?

[RELATEDKerr says Dubs' Russell hasn't let trade rumors affect him]

Almost anything is possible in today's NBA, and the Warriors want to be ready to strike if and when an opportunity presents itself.

And finally -- just because it sounds like Golden State won't be making a blockbuster move in the near future, that doesn't mean the front office won't be looking to execute some smaller trades.

As we discussed last week, don't be surprised if the Warriors make a series of moves to avoid paying the luxury tax this season. If they duck below the tax threshold before July 1, tens of millions of dollars would be saved.

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Monta Ellis reveals 'We Believe' Warriors were doubted by Don Nelson

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AP

Monta Ellis reveals 'We Believe' Warriors were doubted by Don Nelson

2007 was an unforgettable season for the Warriors.

Entering the season with minimal expectations, Golden State climbed up the standings late in the year and secured the No. 8 seed, going on to knock off the top-seeded Dallas Mavericks in a legendary playoff series.

Monta Ellis, who was one of the catalysts for that “We Believe” squad, says that it wasn’t just those outside the organization who entered the season with doubts.

“The one that people really don’t talk about is,” Ellis told Slam Magazine. “That year, [head coach] Don Nelson even came out in the paper and wrote us off. He said we weren’t going to make the playoffs, and we might as well start getting ready for next year and seeing what we could get in the Draft and whatnot.

“We had a lot of veteran guys on the team, and me being a young guy and hungry, we took that to heart. We all came together as a team then. I think we ended up winning 18 of the last 22 or something like that to end up getting into the playoffs as the 8-seed. With that run that we made, it was crazy.”

Ellis was the young guy on a starting unit with veterans like Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, Jason Richardson, and floor general Baron Davis.

But instead of fracturing the team, the players actually bonded over trying to prove their coach wrong.

“We didn’t like that [Don said that],” Ellis said. “So we all came together as a team and we just went out there and played. Off the court, you weren’t going to see one without seeing the other 12 or 13 guys. We go to dinner. 

“Whatever we did, we were always together. It carried over to the basketball court. When we were on the basketball court, no matter if the times got tough or anything, we were always able to stay together. We had heated moments. We had heated situations. But nobody ever got personal with it. Nobody ever took it to heart. Everybody was like, Alright, we’re just trying to get better. We saw that. We saw everybody getting better. We saw the team getting better. So we just stuck with it.”

[RELATED: Five memorable Warriors' playoff moments that stick out]

Although Golden State didn’t return to the postseason until 2013, this group remains one of the most iconic Warriors teams of the 2000s.

As some of the players have said in recent years, this team definitely knew how to have a good time off the court, even with coach Nelson.

NBA rumors: League 'angling' to cancel rest of season amid coronavirus

NBA rumors: League 'angling' to cancel rest of season amid coronavirus

As the sports world remains frozen due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NBA reportedly isn't optimistic it will be able to restart and finish its season.

ESPN's Brian Windhorst went on "SportsCenter" on Friday and gave an update on the league's current line of thinking and the realistic possibility that basketball won't return until next season.

"It's been a bad week," Windhorst said in regards to the feeling the season might not be salvageable. "I think there was optimism about progress a week ago, and some things that have happened this week have turned it south about what could happen. A big factor was what happened in China, where they halted the return of their league and one of the big reasons was they really believed that if they just tested the players' temperature all the time that it would. The Chinese are finding that asymptomatic carriers are causing maybe a second wave in that country. They have just slammed the breaks on sports.

"The talks between the players union and the league this week -- I've talked to both sides of this issue -- and it is clear the NBA is angling to set up a deal that enables them to shut the season down. Now, they don't have to do that yet, and the way they are negotiating, they are leaving themselves an option either way. But they are not having talks about how to restart the league, they are having financial talks about what would happen if the season shuts down and I think there's a significant amount of pessimism right now."

The NBA reportedly had been looking at the idea of playing the playoffs in Las Vegas while keeping the players in a bubble without fans, but public health officials have poked holes in that idea.

Windhorst noted the NBA is walking a fine line in finishing this season without impacting the 2020-21 season, and the widespread availability of fast, reliable tests will be needed to finish this season.

"They do have runway here," Windhorst said. "I do think that they could go into August or September to finish this season. But I'm not sure they feel confident about that right now. A big factor is testing. We just don't have the testing. At some point, not only does there have to be a test that is quick and can tell if a player is healthy enough to enter the game, you have to know that you have the tests available so that you aren't taking them away from people who need them."

The NBA suspended its season March 11 after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus. Gobert and teammate Donovan Mitchell both have fully recovered from their bouts with COVID-19.

[RELATED: Kerr reminiscing about Warriors' dynastic run amid stoppage]

Not finishing the NBA season would be a tough pill to swallow for the league, its players and its fans, but as we focus on social distancing and flattening the curve, it might be the only option.

As of April 3, there were more than 270,000 cases of coronavirus in the United States and more than 7,000 deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and NBC News reporting.