Warriors

Steph Curry opines on player movement in today's NBA and if he can make the cut at Stonebrae

Steph Curry opines on player movement in today's NBA and if he can make the cut at Stonebrae

HAYWARD -- It’s good to be the king, simultaneously atop two mountains, one physically and the other metaphorically, as Stephen Curry was on Tuesday.

Weeks removed from winning back-to-back NBA championships with the Warriors, Curry stood at the podium at Stonebrae Country Club in the Hayward hills, overlooking most of the Bay Area, and chatted about today’s NBA and well as his golf game, including the heights it may never reach.

Despite his passion for golf -- he’s playing this weekend in the Ellie Mae Classic at TPC Stonebrae for the second consecutive year -- Curry reiterated that he has no plans to pursue playing at the professional level after retiring from the NBA.

Curry on the dynamic movement in the NBA this summer and the effect on the Warriors:

“If you go through history, there’s has been blockbuster moves and trades every year, or most years,” he said. “Every team is trying to beat the champs, so nothing is really surprising. You just sit back and survey the league, survey what’s going on, and how we can get back on top this coming year and three-peat.

“There’s been some big names, obviously, with LeBron (James) and other guys moving. We need to control what we can control and be a better team this year. We have a couple new additions, so we’ve got to hit the ground running in September, in training camp. As every year is, chasing a championship, a different year and you can’t just carbon copy what you did last year and be successful.”

On LeBron’s I Promise School in Akron, Ohio, and commitments made by players around the league to various civic and social causes:

“It was amazing to see,” Curry said. “Every NBA player is trying to find a way to impact the city the play in or wherever they’re from or communities at large and at-risk youth or whatever the case is. It’s very visible what guys are doing. And sometimes, there is stuff that happens behind the scenes that nobody knows about.”

On whether he shot a 67 at Stonebrae, as claimed by Warriors teammate Andre Igoudala, on an off day during the postseason and whether he can replicate such a round under tournament conditions:

“I hope so,” Curry said. “Every golfer hopes you can repeat (their) best round on whatever course you play, try to repeat those swings if you’re in a groove. You never know. So I’m going to use the next 48 hours to get right. Get in as many swings as I can, come with high expectations on Thursday and see what happens.”

On the feeling of that 67 at Stonebrae, perhaps his best round ever:

“It’s kind of like when you’re shooting (a basketball). You don’t really think about much. You’re just shooting. It’s the same thing out here. When you have days like that, it’s always fun. That’s what keeps you coming back.”

On his hopes this weekend and whether he can make the cut this year, after missing it by 11 shots last summer:

“As a true golf nut, whether I can execute it or not is another question. But I feel like I can shave off 11 shots. Who knows what the cut will be this year? But that’s my goal.

“I feel like I could use the experience last year and the few chances I get to play tournament golf to my advantage and see what happens. I’ve just got to get off to a better start and not hit it into a cupholder or a golf cart on the first shot.”

On the difference competing at the American Century Championship Celebrity tournament in Lake Tahoe, as he has in recent years, and battling players on the developmental Web.com tour, such as at Stonebrae this weekend:

“In Tahoe, I feel like I’m one of the better guys out there, so it’s a different kind of confidence,” Curry said.

“Out here, I know I’m in over my head in terms of talent and preparation.”

It appears, then, that finding his way atop the mountain representing golf may be a bit too much for even Stephen Curry.

DeMarcus Cousins explains why he flipped off Warriors fans with Kings

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USATSI

DeMarcus Cousins explains why he flipped off Warriors fans with Kings

DeMarcus Cousins knows all too well that fans can cross the line. 

In the wake of a Utah Jazz fan harassing Oklahoma City Thunder star Russell Westbrook earlier this month, the Warriors center said an incident in his current home came to mind. Back in 2017, Cousins was a star for the Kings, and was fined $25,000 for flipping off Warriors fans and yelling "f--- Golden State" after a Sacramento win at Golden 1 Center.

Cousins told Yahoo Sports' Chris Haynes that the traveling fans pushed him to a breaking point. 

“It’s crazy. I remember the whole incident with the whole ‘F--- Golden State’ thing,” Cousins said. “I remember specifically those fans talking crazy to me the entire game, and then I come out the game and it’s those same exact fans. And I knew they were Golden State fans, so I said what I said.

"I talked to the league. I’m like, ‘Such and such and such was said. I was getting called [a] b---- and all this other stuff, punk boys, whatever.’ But they was like, ‘All right, but you flipped them off.’ I’m pretty sure them dudes are still enjoying games [today]. So it’s like I’m the bad guy because I react?”

In the same interview, Cousins said fans have directed racial slurs towards him "on a few occasions," and the NBA had told him to ignore the fans. On March 12, the league fined Russell Westbrook $25,000 for "directing profanity and threatening language" at a Jazz fan. Westbrook said the fan's taunts were "racial," and the Jazz banned the fan from all events at Vivint Smart Home Arena. 

[RELATED: Cousins says NBA fans have called him n-word multiple times]

Cousins said Westbrook's experience raised awareness about interactions that he thinks are all-too-common in NBA arenas. But that doesn't mean he understands why fans end up crossing the line. 

“I think it kind of went viral with the whole Russ thing,” Cousins said. “I’m sure that played a part in it. He’s had multiple instances in that same city. You even got the one clip of the guy flipping Russ off. Like, when does the game get that serious for a fan? Why are you that angry? This dude is literally out there putting a ball through a hoop. How do you get that angry?"

Warriors Under Review: Dubs salvage back-to-back with win vs. Pistons

Warriors Under Review: Dubs salvage back-to-back with win vs. Pistons

OAKLAND -- The weekend at Oracle Arena was supposed to extend the momentum generated by the Warriors after walloping the Pacers on Thursday in the homecoming game following a successful road trip.

Coming in were the Mavericks and the Pistons, with the former betting on the future and the latter scraping the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff pillow fight.

Sweep, right? Well, sort of.

Dallas swept the Warriors into a state of disbelief Saturday with a 126-91 rout of the champs, who recovered nicely on Sunday by sweeping Detroit off the floor with a 121-114 victory.

Here are some of the positives and negatives culled from the back-to-back set:

POSITIVE

Rest season is underway

It’s that time of year where coaches and trainers have one eye on the present and the other on the future. Rest nights are hereby given to selected players.

Stephen Curry, Andrew Bogut and Shaun Livingston got theirs on Saturday, with DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Iguodala getting theirs on Sunday.

The Saturday plan was a rousing success. Curry, Bogut and Livingston likely would not have made much difference against Dallas, but they were superb against Detroit. Curry scored a game-high 26 points, shooting 5-of-10 from deep while playing 35 minutes. Bogut scored eight points (4-of-5 from the field), adding five rebounds, three assists and three blocks in 24 minutes. Livingston was 4-of-4 from the field with two assists in 16 minutes.

POSITIVE

Draymond’s bombs

This is something Draymond Green doesn’t mind you noticing -- as long as you don’t mention it: His broken 3-ball seems to be on the mend.

Green made one of the Warriors’ four 3-pointers against Dallas and then drained a big one to beat the halftime buzzer against Detroit. He was 2-of-5 from deep for the weekend, which may seem modest -- until you realize he’s been hovering well below 30 percent this season.

[RELATED: How Draymond's defense set the tone in Warriors' win]

Green over the last six games is shooting 50 percent (8-of-16) from beyond the arc. That’s a clear sign of progress. When his 3-ball is a threat, the Warriors are indefensible.

POSITIVE

The spine remains intact

Displaying precious little determination and zero rhythm, the Warriors were barely in the building for the loss to the Mavericks. Never has a blowout been more richly deserved.

Did they even care? Based on that performance, it was impossible to say.

It bothered them enough that they bounced back. After an autopilot first quarter Sunday, they came after the Pistons with a vengeance, going up 14 at the half and taking a 20-point lead into the fourth quarter. The Warriors tend to respond loudly after being pantsed. They brought their backbone and it showed.

[RELATED: Sixth straight 50-win season has earned Dubs one thing]

NEGATIVE

The ghastly truth

As much as the Warriors would like to, as coach Steve Kerr put it, “flush this one down the toilet,” we cannot overlook the headlong dive into humiliation on Saturday.

How to lose to a team on your floor to a team 16 games below .500? The numbers tell the truth. Outrebounded 49-36. Shoot 4-of-30 from deep, while the opponent is 21-of-49. Have Klay Thompson hang a minus-39, Draymond Green a minus-29, Cousins a minus-27 and Kevin Durant a minus-26. Quinn Cook, starting for Curry salvaged a minus-24.

The Warriors looked like a bunch of guys hitting the gym after 16-hour shifts at the warehouse. This one was about as close to inexcusable as anything they’ve offered in recent years.

POSITIVE

Loon in tune

Amid the ruins of the loss to the Maverick was a single jewel. Kevon Looney scored 12 points in 13 minutes on 5-of-6 shooting. He didn’t stop there.

Listed as questionable for the game against Detroit with a right forearm contusion, Looney was cleared to play and delivered once again, scoring 11 points in 13 minutes on 4-of-5 shooting from the field.

When a backup center comes off the bench in back-to-back games and scores 23 points in 26 minutes on 9-of--11 shooting from the field, he’s exceeding any realistic expectation.