Warriors

Warriors' Andre Iguodala alludes to retirement, fine with NBA playoff workload

Warriors' Andre Iguodala alludes to retirement, fine with NBA playoff workload

OAKLAND -- The Golden State Warriors have dealt with myriad injuries throughout the NBA playoffs. That burden has caused 15-year veteran Andre Iguodala to play extended minutes during the team's quest for a third consective title.

Iguodala has averaged nearly 30 minutes over his last four games. Now, after a calf injury kept him out of Game 4 of the Western Conference finals, Iguodala believes his health will be fine, even if his years in the league are numbered.

“Just a lot of minutes and overuse. I’m old,” Iguodala said after practice Saturday. “It just flared up real quick, but we have a good training staff. When you’ve been playing for five long seasons, it’s bound to come up. It’s rare that you see it. It’s hard for it to be realized. My career is almost over, anyway. So I don’t really care.”

To help Iguodala recover for the NBA Finals, which will begin Thursday, Warriors coach Steve Kerr has held the 35-year-old out of practice over the last three days, allowing him to get treatment on his left calf.

While recent weeks don't show it, Iguodala has had a relatively clean bill of health this season. He played in 68 regular-season games, averaging 5.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists. His play has picked up in the postseason, as he's bumped his scoring average to 10.1 points per game, helping Golden State overcome injuries to Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins.

Since joining the Warriors six years ago, Iguodala has been a vital veteran presence. Long known for his strict diet, the forward occasionally will take younger players under his wing. Two summers ago, Iguodala played a role in improving Kevon Looney's diet, helping the forward lose more than 25 pounds before his breakout third season. During Patrick McCaw's rookie season, Iguodala, unprompted, sent a box of tailored suits to McCaw's residence.

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Iguodala's play and positive influence on the Warriors could end soon. Earlier this season, he told NBC Sports Bay Area's Monte Poole that he was pondering retirement. With one year left on a three-year, $48 million contract, Iguodala's decision will have to come soon. For now, he says he's focused on his fifth NBA Finals appearance.

“We have a tough series ahead. But I’m going to enjoy it,” Iguodala said. “I’m about to be done playing, anyway.”

Attorney says deputy in alleged Masai Ujiri altercation has concussion

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USATSI

Attorney says deputy in alleged Masai Ujiri altercation has concussion

The deputy who the Alameda County Sheriff's Office said Toronto Raptors president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri struck in the face is on medical leave after suffering a concussion, attorney David Mastagni told The Associated Press on Tuesday. 

Mastagni told KPIX on Monday that the deputy, whose name has not been released, also has "a serious jaw injury" as a result of the alleged altercation.

“The officer is off work, disabled and wants to go back to work,” Mastagni told the AP.

KPIX reported Monday that Mastagni is representing the officer. 

Officials say that Ujiri pushed and struck the deputy in the face during the waning moments of Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Thursday. With Ujiri's Raptors set to celebrate their first championship, the deputy prevented Ujiri from reaching the court because he didn't display the proper credentials, Sgt. Ray Kelly of the Alameda County Sheriff's Office told NBC Sports Washington on Friday morning.

KPIX reported Monday that Alameda County Sheriff Greg Ahern "personally reviewed" footage from Oracle Arena's security cameras and the deputy's body camera, and he said he will recommend the district attorney charge Ujiri with misdemeanor battery of a police officer. Mastagni told multiple outlets that the deputy is considering filing a lawsuit against Ujiri. 

The Raptors said in a statement to NBC Sports Washington last week that the encounter "is being looked at, and we are cooperating with authorities. We look forward to resolving the situation." Warriors season-ticket holder Greg Wiener said he saw the incident, and he told the AP on Friday that Ujiri shoved, but did not strike the deputy after he "put his hand on Ujiri's chest and pushed him."

Wiener initially told the AP that the deputy did not mention that Ujiri lacked proper credentials, but recounted Tuesday “after thinking about it all weekend" that the officer shouted, "No one gets on the court without credentials.”

The 48-year-old Ujiri has run the Raptors' front office since 2013. The Washington Wizards are preparing to offer Ujiri their top job, and NBC Sports Washington's Ben Standig reported the offer could include an ownership stake in the team and be worth up to $10 million per year.

NBA rumors: Executives doubt DeMarcus Cousins will land contract he wants

NBA rumors: Executives doubt DeMarcus Cousins will land contract he wants

It's extremely difficult to get a read on what the Warriors' roster will look like next season, given all of the marquee players destined for free agency, some of whom will be recovering from serious injuries.

DeMarcus Cousins knows that existence all too well. He's set to become an unrestricted free agent on June 30, having spent a large portion of the past season working his way back from a torn Achilles and torn quadriceps.

The Achilles injury was a major factor in bringing Cousins to Golden State. As it turns out, the quadriceps injury, as well as the ruptured Achilles and torn ACL suffered by Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson, respectively, could prove to be major factors in keeping him there for at least another season.

While Cousins flashed his pre-injury form sporadically throughout his first season with the Warriors, his consistency was severely lacking, and certain areas of his game were clearly diminished. His shortcomings were exposed in the Finals against the Raptors, and while there's a lot of money available to be spent in free agency, some believe that Cousins won't receive the kind of deal he's been hoping for.

"I doubt he gets what he wants," one anonymous NBA executive told Bleacher Report's Yaron Weitzman.

If that's the case, and Cousins doesn't get an offer that blows him away, could he return to the Warriors for the inaugural season at Chase Center?

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was asked about the potential of bringing Cousins back for another season last week, and was very open to the idea, but didn't expect it to be a realistic possibility.

"I would say the hope is, frankly, that he can do a lot better financially than what we could offer him. But who knows? Every year is different," Kerr said last Friday. "We have to figure out our own situation, particularly with Klay [Thompson] and Kevin [Durant] and how all that shakes out.

"But I could absolutely foresee a place for DeMarcus here if he wanted to come back," Kerr continued. "It's just a question of what are his goals? What's out there for him?"

If the anonymous executive is correct in their assumption, Cousins might not have a more appealing option than what the Warriors are able to offer. And, depending on what his goals are, a renewed partnership might be even more logical.

Let's say Cousins doesn't receive any offers in free agency to his liking. If he's then intent on proving his doubters wrong and putting himself in the best situation possible to showcase his resurgence, the Warriors would seem to make a ton of sense, just as they did a year ago.

With both Durant and Thompson expected to miss most or all of next season while recovering from their respective injuries, that's going to leave a massive void in the Warriors' scoring arsenal. Stephen Curry can't be expected to do it all on his own, and -- if healthy -- Cousins might be the perfect kind of complement to help carry the load.

[RELATED: Steph given fourth-best odds to win third MVP next year]

Of course, given how depleted Golden State's roster already is, the idea of placing a big bet on a big man still working his way back from a couple of major injuries is, well, a bit scary.

It's got to make sense for both sides. But it might work out that another year of Cousins in a Warriors uniform accomplishes exactly that.