Warriors

Pelicans GM David Griffin cites Warriors blueprint when talking philosophy

Pelicans GM David Griffin cites Warriors blueprint when talking philosophy

On June 15, the Pelicans agreed to trade Anthony Davis to the Lakers.

In return, New Orleans received guards Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart, forward Brandon Ingram, three first-round picks and the right to swap selections with Los Angeles in the 2023 NBA Draft.

Less than a week later, the Pelicans drafted Zion Williamson, Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker in the first round.

They added JJ Redick and Derrick Favors in free agency, and the franchise legitimately believes it can make the playoffs next season.

So despite losing The Brow, Pelicans executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin is maintaining a "win now" approach.

What does this have to do with the Warriors? Well, Griffin provided the following explanation on "The Full 48" podcast with Howard Beck:

"Everybody gets so fixated on this in a binary way -- you're either trying to win a championship or you're supposed to tank and play for the lottery. Well, the value of growing together and learning how to win together is what really made the Golden State Warriors the animal and the flamethrower that they were.

"That nucleus of Steph [Curry], Klay [Thompson] and Draymond [Green] took their lumps together -- they learned how to win together -- in meaningful basketball games. They were a playoff team when Mark Jackson was let go. And Steve [Kerr] came in and sort of took them to an all together different level.

"But those playoff losses early on is what made it possible for them to embrace what Steve was doing and the value of what Steve was doing. Learning how to win together is a really big deal.

"And so everybody says they want to be the Warriors. They want to do this or do that. Well then do what they did. Keep a nucleus together and try to win basketball games ... raise kids in an environment in which winning matters.

"If we end up drafting 16 or 17 because we 'got in our own way,' well then the upside benefitted those kids playing meaningful basketball."

This is some awesome perspective.

Curry was the No. 7 pick in 2009, Klay was taken at No. 11 in 2011, and Draymond went No. 35 in 2012.

The No. 6 seed Warriors upset the No. 3 seed Nuggets in the first round of the 2013 playoffs before falling in six games to the Spurs in the second round.

[RELATEDWhy Gottlieb is very wrong about Draymond's place in NBA]

In 2014, the Dubs dropped Game 7 on the road to the Clippers in the opening round.

In 2015, they won the franchise's first championship since 1975.

As Griffin said, they learned how to win together and they continued to win even more.

But will the trio capture another championship? If they do, it just might be the most meaningful of all.

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How Warriors are affected by EuroLeague canceling rest of 2019-20 season

How Warriors are affected by EuroLeague canceling rest of 2019-20 season

While the NBA is inching closer to resuming the 2019-20 season, Europe's top basketball league decided not to pursue the same avenue.

The EuroLeague announced Monday that it was canceling the remainder of its 2019-20 season.

Each EuroLeague team had played 28 of their 34 regular-season games.

Ordinarily, the EuroLeague ending its season wouldn't be news for the Warriors and their fans. But 2020 has been a completely different year for the Warriors. Mired in a 15-50 season, Golden State will have a top-five pick in this year's NBA draft.

That means 19-year-old Israeli prospect Deni Avdija, who plays for Maccabi Tel-Aviv, is on the Warriors' radar. NBC Sports Bay Area's Monte Poole reported at the end of April that the Warriors have traveled to Europe to take a look at Avdija, who could be a top-five draft pick.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

With the Warriors missing the playoffs this season, the team was going to use the unexpected free time in May to go scout prospects in Europe. Coach Steve Kerr reportedly was supposed to go watch Killian Hayes and Théo Maledon, while Kent Lacob, director of team development, was going to scout Avdija. But the coronavirus pandemic forced the Warriors to cancel those travel plans.

Due to travel restrictions, the Warriors likely wouldn't have been able to send anyone to watch Avdija play in the final six EuroLeague games had they been held, but they could have at least gotten more film on him. Now, they will have to form their opinion of Avdija with the in-person scouting they've already done and the film they have on hand.

In 21 games this season against Israel Basketball Super League competition, Avdija averaged 12.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 26.6 minutes.

[RELATED: 2020 NBA Mock Draft 7.0]

Avdija hasn't seen as much playing time in the EuroLeague, so his numbers aren't great. In 26 games against better competition, he's averaging 4.0 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 14.2 minutes.

We don't know when the NBA will hold the 2020 draft, but if the Warriors select Avdija, we'll know they saw enough of him before the coronavirus put a stop to basketball around the world.

Michael Jordan-Steph Curry 'The Match' pairing posed by Colin Cowherd

Michael Jordan-Steph Curry 'The Match' pairing posed by Colin Cowherd

Sunday’s “The Match,” featuring a showdown between NFL stars Peyton Manning and Tom Brady along with PGA icons Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods was a smashing success. The event raised $20 million for coronavirus relief in the United States, and was the highest-rated golf event in cable television history.

The access and humorous trash talk throughout has led many to speculate as to which duo from sports could be part of the next iteration of the event. Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd discussed this on Monday and posed some interesting potential pairings.

"Michael has always let it be known that he's pretty good at golf," Cowherd said. "Steph is easily the best current NBA golfer, that I would pay to see."

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Steph Curry tweeted Sunday that he’d like to be included next time around, and sure enough Cowherd first mentioned a duel between the Warriors star and another NBA icon with North Carolina roots in Michael Jordan. MJ was shown to play golf frequently throughout his NBA career during ESPN’s “The Last Dance,” and continues to be a fan of the sport.

Curry is an avid golf fan and was glued to his television Sunday during “The Match.” He’s played in some professional golf events in the past, and always is among the best current athletes at the celebrity-laden American Century Championship each summer in Lake Tahoe.

Given MJ’s propensity to trash talk during his historic NBA career, it’s hard to imagine he wouldn’t be trading barbs constantly with Curry. Steph’s confidence never has been in question and he likely would have plenty of fun going back and forth with Jordan.

[RELATED: Who Warriors fans think Steph Curry should team up with in 'The Match']

Throwing a couple PGA pros in, especially two who are avid NBA fans could make for some great conversation. As we saw throughout Sunday’s foursome, Mickelson and Woods were more than willing to engage and dish out some one-liners.

MJ likely wouldn’t be thrilled about being mic’d up for an entire round with no editorial control. But if both parties would be willing, this would be the most highly-anticipated event in the history of golf.

Plus we finally could settle that pesky debate of which team was more dominant between Curry’s 2016-17 Warriors and Jordan’s 1995-96 Bulls.