Warriors

Warriors practice takeaways: What we learned on Day 2 of training camp

Warriors practice takeaways: What we learned on Day 2 of training camp

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Warriors practiced in their new home for the second time Wednesday, but practice ended earlier than expected thanks to a pair of Golden State big men injuring themselves. 

With the Warriors still integrating a number of new players, here are the three biggest takeaways from Wednesday's practice session. 

Curry and Russell come to an understanding

Two days into training camp, Warriors guard Stephen Curry has already found the remedy to sharing responsibilities with newcomer D'Angelo Russell: Whoever gets the rebound keeps the ball. 

Russell -- who officially signed a four-year, $117 million deal in July -- was among the highest usage players in the league last season. The Nets used Russell on 31.1 percent of their offensive possesions, causing concern he could coexist with Curry, who was used on 29.2 percent of the Warriors'. However, Curry believes the two ultimately will complement each other. 

"That's going to be fun to watch," Curry said Wednesday. "Having a playmaker like that, that can put the ball on the floor, create for others. He's obviously a knockdown shooter. I think the chemistry will be developed very, very quickly in terms of how we work off each other and what we can accomplish as a backcourt."

The Warriors will be without Klay Thompson, who averaged 21.5 points last season, as he rehabs his torn ACL. That, coupled with eight additions to the roster, will force Curry and Russell to shoulder the offensive load at the onset of the season. 

Russell sounded confident Tuesday that the two players could coexist. Fewer than 24 hours later, Curry agreed. 

"In terms of just playing, I've always had a high responsibility of putting the ball in the basket and creating for others and that's pretty much the same," Curry said. "I'll have to feel out exactly how defenses want to play us and what they want to try and take away, but at the end of the day, I've always played aggressive [but] that's never meant taking every shot."    

Center injury woes

Golden State's already thin frontcourt took two more hits Wednesday. Kevon Looney tweaked his hamstring, while Alen Smailagic rolled his ankle, causing Steve Kerr to cut the training session short. 

The injuries come two days after the team announced their free-agent acquisition Willie Cauley Stein -- who was expected to compete for the starting spot -- strained his foot. Following Wednesday's practice, Kerr said Looney "didn't think it was bad." Additionally, Looney was seen riding a stationary bike during Kerr's media session. According to a source, Looney's injury was described as "minor," and he isn't expected to miss any time.  

"It's always a concern," Kerr said. " ... This is a brand new roster so different dynamics and this is kind of a fluke for three of our four centers to go down either before camp or on the second day. That's flukish." 

In the meantime, the team will turn to Omari Spellman and perhaps Draymond Green at center. After a breakout fourth season, Looney was expected to compete for the starting center role. 

Smailigic, meanwhile, is a long-term project worth an investment, evidenced by the fully guaranteed contract he signed this summer. The 18-year-old showed a bevy of potential, with numerous highlight-reel dunks during Summer League in Las Vegas. In four games in Vegas, he averaged 8.5 points, adding 5.0 rebounds in 22 minutes per contest.

[RELATED: Kerr on NBA's coaching trial in Year 6 with Warriors]

Assessing the small forwards

With Kevin Durant and Andre Iguodala no longer on the team, Golden State is uncertain who will start at small forward. In the offseason, the Warriors added Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson to compete with Alfonzo McKinnie for the starting role. 

"We've got a couple of guys who have been pros now for a while, they have plenty of experience," Kerr said. 

Entering camp, McKinnie has the advantage, considering his experience in the Warriors' system. However, he might have the most to lose with a bad camp. Of the players competing for the role, McKinnie is the only player with a non-guaranteed deal.

Kerr also said that Jacob Evans -- who struggled to get on the floor as a rookie last season -- could also get time at small forward. 

Why Mychal Thompson was nervous for Klay's first game vs. Kobe Bryant

Why Mychal Thompson was nervous for Klay's first game vs. Kobe Bryant

Klay Thompson is just about the most cool, calm, collected player in the NBA. He never gets rattled and he's never nervous.

But Klay's dad Mychal is a different story.

The elder Thompson posted a photo on Twitter on Monday from Klay's very first game against Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, and he revealed that he was nervous to watch his son face his idol.

Mychal said he was nervous because of the way Kobe treated rookies he faced. In that game, on Jan. 6, 2012, Bryant 39 points, seven assists and four rebounds in the Lakers' 97-90 win over the Warriors.

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

Klay, in just his seventh career game, scored 14 points off the bench.

Born in Los Angeles, Klay grew up worshipping the late Bryant. Just this week, the Warriors star stopped by Staples Center to pay his respects to Bryant and his daughter Gigi, who died in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26.

[RELATED: Steph had "major FOMO" when NBA bubble games began]

Based on the photo of Klay guarding Kobe eight years ago, it doesn't look like the 2011 No. 11 overall draft pick was nervous at all.

Steph Curry says NBA players upsetting President Trump doing 'right thing'

Steph Curry says NBA players upsetting President Trump doing 'right thing'

Steph Curry isn't able to peacefully protest in Orlando, Fla., but he's proud of what his NBA peers are doing with their platform.

Throughout the NBA restart at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex, entire teams have taken a knee during the playing of the national anthem to protest racial and social injustices. Players are wearing social justice messages on their uniforms. They are using their Zoom conference calls with reporters to call for equality and for the Louisville police officers who shot Breonna Taylor to be arrested.

In particular, United States President Donald Trump has taken exception to NBA players kneeling during the national anthem, stating that he's turning off games because of the action.

But Curry believes if NBA players are angering President Trump, their message is the right one.

“My barometer is always, if the current president is upset about something that somebody’s speaking out on, then you’re probably saying the right thing," Curry told The New York Times' Marc Stein on Monday. "Whether they’ve knelt, or sacrificed an interview to talk about Breonna Taylor, or whatever’s important, they’re talking about it and they’re backing it up with action.”

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James spoke to reporters last week about President Trump turning off NBA games because players are kneeling.

"I really don't think the basketball community are sad about losing his viewership, him viewing the game," James said last Wednesday. "And that's all I got to say."

[RELATED: Seth Curry believes missing NBA restart tough for Steph]

Curry, LeBron and the rest of the NBA community understand what they are trying to accomplish with their actions and words. They are making a push for justice and equality in society. They are not concerned with President Trump's opposition.

And as Curry indicated, if the current president opposed what they are doing, they should keep doing what they are doing.