Insofar as the Warriors run a fairly democratic operation, with each player having a voice and the core veterans operating as advisers to head coach Steve Kerr, an invitation to become part of a proposed but not approved second NBA “bubble” presents a dilemma.
If mandated by the NBA, they’ll go, whether it’s Chicago or Las Vegas or another site. That the vets – Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson -- would not be expected to play makes the team’s participation cursory, if not downright pointless.
Yet general manager Bob Myers recently said the Warriors would be “team players” and, in the end, do whatever is best for the league.
“You have to take a step back and say, ‘We’re going to be good partners,’” he said in a phone conversation. “We’re going to do what’s best for the league in a difficult environment.”
Understand, the Warriors don’t want to be there -- and why should they? Their 2019-20 season is over, and there is no definitive start date for 2020-2021. They’d be scrimmaging, at potentially increased risk of the coronavirus (COVID-19), with the crew that absorbed most of the minutes last season.
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Which brings us to their real desire. They want to gather as a group before the next training camp, currently penciled in for November. Kerr told me a few weeks ago that he “wouldn’t mind” getting his team together for what amounts to a minicamp in the middle of an offseason extended by the pandemic.
Coaches want it, and so do the players. They all would like the experience of playing with each other, which didn’t exist last season. Thompson missed the entire season, and Curry played four games, only one with Andrew Wiggins, who came over in a February trade.
Ideally, that would occur at Chase Center, which has opened for individual activities with attendance limitations but remains suspended for full team activities.
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Should the day come when the current restrictions are relaxed, expect the Warriors to identify a week to get everyone inside. Get Thompson on the floor with Wiggins and others, scrimmaging together for the first time. Evaluate how Curry and Green have responded to the long layoff.
That would be productive, as well as their first blowout activity since early March.
Going into a second bubble, with a stripped-down squad, confined to a hotel for a week or two, is something the Warriors are willing to do. Willing, but hardly eager and barely engaged.