Joe Lacob and Don Nelson

Joe Lacob has just done another major interview, this one with Tim Kawakami. What follows is my reaction to it, in the form of one last panegyric (here is the first) in favor of retaining Don Nelson as the coach of the Golden State Warriors.

First let me note that it was extremely smart of Lacob to do this interview with Kawakami. Going directly into the snake pit to draw the venom from the viper’s fangs. A strong move that indicates as much as anything else that the Chris Cohan era is well and truly dead.

Getting to the substance: One thing made clear from the interview is that Lacob has strong opinions on basketball and basketball talent, and believes like most fans that he has what it takes to be his own GM.  He wants to put his own stamp on the basketball team, starting with the draft and ending with trading for superstars, with the occasional personal signing of an undrafted home-town hero thrown in.  I can’t fault him for that. I would no doubt be exactly the same way if I had control of a franchise.  But it can be a dangerous trait in an owner, as Mark Cuban has repeatedly proved.  In a very short time, Cuban has become one of the very worst GMs in the history of the league — perhaps the only one to ever throw away a championship team out of hubris.

The interview also makes me fear for Don Nelson, and for the “architecture” of the team, as Lacob puts it.  Lacob recognizes that this team is very special in its running ability, but states in almost the same breath that he doesn’t believe a running team can win in the playoffs.  (He apparently doesn’t believe that untimely injuries or suspensions in the conference finals kept the 2003 Mavericks or the Nash/Stoudemire Suns from winning a title.  And he may not have watched Cowen’s (and Nelson’s) Celtics run Jabbar’s Bucks off the court in the 1974 finals. [Want a hint as to my age?  Watching Cowens battle Jabbar unto death was a formative experience for the young, undersized feltbot.])  Lacob wants low-post basketball.  That’s how his championship Celtics were built, that’s the conventional wisdom since the dawn of basketball time, and that’s what he understands.

I would like to say this to Joe Lacob:  Walk it up and throw it into the low post basketball is not the be-all and end-all  of playoff basketball that conventional wisdom says it is.  Don Nelson basketball  wins in the playoffs, and I can prove it.

It wins with greatly inferior rosters, as when Nellie’s RunTMC Warriors knocked both the David Robinson Spurs and the Stockton and Malone Jazz out of the playoffs, and when Nellie’s We Believe Warriors knocked  the #1 seeded Mavericks out of the playoffs.

It also wins with great rosters, as when Nellie won the World Championship with Team USA in 1994, and when he came within a heart-breaking Nowitzki knee injury in Game 3 of the 2003 Conference Finals of winning a title with the Dallas Mavericks.  Mr. Lacob, please go back and watch the first two games of that series, in which the Mavs seized home-court advantage from the Spurs, and consider who would have won the title if Nowitzki doesn’t get injured.  (The New Jersey Nets were a non-factor.  They were swept out of the finals by the Spurs, and would have been crushed by the Mavericks as well had they advanced.)

And while you’re at it, please go back and watch those great Phoenix Suns runs in the playoffs, and consider whether the Suns might have won a title if Joe Johnson and Steve Nash didn’t get their faces re-arranged, or if Amare Stoudemire didn’t blow out his knee, or if David Stern didn’t make one of the most ridiculous suspensions in the history of organized sport.

If that doesn’t convince you – and apparently it hasn’t – then consider this:   I predict that 4 out of the next 5 NBA titles will be won by a Don Nelson-styled running team.  A team that in fact plays SMALL BALL for much of the game.  That team is of course the Miami Heat, and the “architecture” that will win titles in crunch time is Chris Bosh at center and Lebron James at power forward.  With Bosh out on the wings spacing the floor, and Lebron playing point-forward at the top of the key.  That is the unit that is completely unstoppable, that is the unit that is going to run teams off the floor, that is the unit that is going to win championships in spectacular style. With nary a low-post player to be seen.

Nellieball is going to win titles, very soon, and for a long, long time to come.

I fervently hope you give it a chance here, Mr. Lacob, for we have the makings of a very special team this season, under the guidance of a very special coach.  A chance to convince you that the most beautiful and entertaining basketball on earth can also be winning basketball.

One last glorious chance.

57 Responses to Joe Lacob and Don Nelson

  1. I’m not convinced that Lacob is calling for a drastic overhaul, and even if he is, I don’t see it happening soon. Note he said it took a Kevin Garnet to make the Celtics work. Where are we going to get a such player, and when?

    Radically changing philosophy would waste the major talent we have in the backcourt. And he’s not going to play post-up basketball, if that’s what he wants, until he gets more post-up players. This could take years.

    Lacob knows all this.

    He is answering a question many have about the size of the team, now and in the past. When, in the last years, did the Warriors have a center better than Parrish? As it is now, there are large questions about who is going shore up David Lee. Lacob wants to reassure us that this is a priority. He is also answering all the questions about defense. (Nelson couldn’t play defense last year because he had no size most of the season . . . .)

    And he is sending a message to the league — especially to those players who are shopping around for a place to win — that he’s going to do all he can to put a team together with whom they’ll want to play.

  2. The Warriors are reported to be in the hunt for Louis Amundsen.
    I’m not a big fan of Amundsen’s talent, but admire his hustle and toughness, and this is a move that may be absolutely necessary due to the injury to Udoh.

    Amundsen himself wants to return to the Suns, but they are apparently not interested. And why would that be? I would suspect it is to create playing time for the Brandan Wright/Anthony Randolph of the Suns, otherwise known as Earl Clark. If their fans and media are anything like ours, you can imagine the noise that was being made last year over Clark’s (non-existent) role. Not to mention the noise from Clark and his camp themselves. Such is life and politics in the NBA.

  3. The key part of your analysis for me comes from the following words: “…believes like most fans that he has what it takes to be his own GM.”

    Virtually every comment I read on a sports blog comes from a fan who thinks he, and he alone, really knows the right thing to do. Humility anyone? Not in this universe.

    Lacob has an advantage over most of us of having actually been part of an NBA ownership team. He has the advantage of multiple degrees and great success in his chosen field of venture capital. But I detect a lot of hubris in the man, and that makes me wary.

    No question, he and his team will be a big upgrade over outgoing ownership. So I’m expecting a much better overall situation, but I’m not expecting miracles on the court. The decision about keeping/dropping Nelson will be a key. I agree with you, Felty, that Nelson has the pieces this year to do something special. It will be interesting to see if Lacob has the intuition, the gut smarts, to recognize that. But his saying he admires the smart-but-supremely-flawed Billy Beane, of all people, tells me we’re going to be in for a lot of disappointment.

  4. Feltbot,

    What is your opinion of the Andris Biedrins interview blog post and also Joe Lacob’s response to the question about Biedrin’s interview? Do you think we need to get Amundsen (or someone) for more than just backup? If it comes to moving Biedrins, who would you target given who looks to be available today?

  5. I have been operating under the assumption that the new owners are lucid and intelligent and will see that keeping Nelson for one last go-around is the smart thing to do. And I agree 100 percent in your statement regarding “the most beautiful and entertaining basketball on earth” which is the style Nelson plays. However you bring up the possibility that plodding lowpost troglodyte basketball might be in the offing under new management. Hell, I’d be a Trailblazers fan if I enjoyed that! I won’t spend a dime on that team or their gear; not a dime.

    So, you’ve brought up the possibility that if Warriors basketball becomes boring, I can get my excitement ‘fix’ by watching the Heat. Well, seeing as they are going to be on the telly A LOT, maybe I’ll switch my fandom!

  6. geraldmcgrew

    Very well stated, fb.
    One added example, though it was technically just an exhibition game, of what Nellie can do with a great roster: When he coached the All-Star game in 1992, his team won by 40 points……………………40 POINTS!!!
    West 153
    East 113

  7. For those who stay away from Kawakami’s blog site thought I’d re-post what I blogged there earlier this AM.


    Steve says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 3:11 am

    ..To all the morons who are going to boycott the Warriors if this or that doesn’t happen, I hope you can live with yourselves if your absence leads GSW to bankruptcy. LMAO

    Lacob and his fellow investors didn’t arrive at this point in their lives, financially speaking, by following the advice of the lunatic fringe that overpopulates the world wide blogasphere. “BRING BACK MULLY, HE WAS SUCH A GOOD GUY. FIRE NELSON! LOOK AT ALL THOSE SUPERSTAR HALL OF FAMERS HE RUINED. FIRE RILEY! FIRE ROWELL! FIRE ALL THE USHERS AND PARKING ATTENDENTS!!! ONLY THEN WILL I GET OUT OF MY BATHROBE AND FLIP FLOPS AND COME TO ANOTHER DUBS GAME.” LOL

    Perception and reality can be cruel bedfellows. If these guys are as smart as they seem, their number one priority in taking over this franchise is finding out if perception and reality are one and the same as it pertains to all levels of upper management. Fix what needs to be fixed, and don’t try and fix what’s not broken, at least for the time being. Just get it right. The Warriors aren’t winning the NBA title next season regardless, so a slow-but-sure approach to turning this organization around easily makes the most sense.

    As for the head coach, Nelson has always done well with teams filled with hard working, unselfish players. There’s every reason to believe that this group (and a few more additions before training camp), if healthy, will have a very respectable increase in wins from last season, maybe better. And the style that fits their strengths is the style that Nelson coaches better than anyone. Defense? If the Warriors can rebound better, their defensive stats will greatly improve from recent years. And the Warriors WILL be much improved on the boards with the addition of Lee.

    To someone who asked about players that Nelson has developed over the last 4 years, well, Curry is obvious. But how about Azuibuke? How about Matt Barnes? How about CJ Watson, Reggie Williams, and Anthony Tolliver? Even Anthony Morrow. All these guys were outcasts, so to speak. Mostly undrafted D-Leaguers that no other NBA team wanted. But after playing for Nelson these players all signed new contracts, for more money, and all figure to be useful NBA players for the duration. And nary a one ever had a bad word to say about Nelson or the Warriors. Most are now playing elsewhere because their games improved to the point where they became too expensive (in one way or another) for the Warriors to keep.

    As for Randolph, even though Nelli haters would never admit to the possibility, Nelson’s tough-love was starting to work. His game and attitude was in the process of changing for the better when he hurt his ankle. Did you ever hear AR say he was glad to get out of here? No. In fact, just the opposite. He said he was shocked to hear about the trade, with Curry even expressing some disappointment about the breakup of some of the younger core that had been working together.

    Jackson NEVER had a problem with Nelson until after he came out with his trade demands, which was all related to the Warriors not improving their roster over the summer.

    Barron has only played really good for one coach…..Nelson.

    Harrington can’t get along with anyone. Denver makes how many different teams in his career?

    Was Nelson right about Murphy and Dunleavy? Or to put it another way, does anyone really care about either player as long as they never come back here? LOL

    J-Rich? Didn’t last long with Charlotte, and has been just OK with the Suns.

    Petrius? Low basketball IQ, overpaid and always hurt with Orlando. Have I left out any of those “great” players that Nelson ran out of town? LOL And truth be told, I wish he WOULD run AB out of town. Soft and no heart, all about the money. Ever since his new contract the guy has been in free-fall mode. The 21st century edition of Joe Barry Carroll.

    In summary, Nelson should coach this season’s team, then let the end results dictate the next step in the process of improving the Warriors going forward.

    I’m optimistic about the Warriors and the new owners. Lacob obviously brings a lot of passion to the table, as well as a new game plan. My only advice would be to stay away from the blogasphere. WAY too many loonies driving on the wrong side of the street. LOL

  8. Very nicely written Steve. I pray (or sacrifice a goat, whatever is necessary) it is a similar voice of sanity the new owners listen to.

  9. But who is Steve responding to? This blog has a certain point of view and only those who adhere bother to contribute. WHY ALL THE CAPS?

  10. Very comprehensive post, Steve! Thanks for filling in all the gaps :>

    Gnossos, I agree with you that I have had a much harder time than I thought I would drawing Nelson haters and hecklers. Not at all like on Adam’s board :> Perhaps they feel they would be unwelcome in a smaller forum, but that’s not the case. I welcome all viewpoints. Or perhaps they just don’t want to bother reading my drivel…

    Andria, I’ve been withholding my feelings on Biedrins. It’s hard to be concerned with him when Don Nelson’s fate is hanging by a thread! But here are a few of my thoughts:

    I think his rant was inspired by his pain at losing his best friend off the team, Rony Turiaf. I think he now feels isolated and friendless, alone in the middle with the weight of the world on his shoulders, and Don Nelson sitting heavily on top of that world. I can empathize with him. But I think the substance of his rant was idiotic and childish.

    I am not at all concerned about his feelings for Don Nelson or his teammates. What I am concerned about is his health and his freaking sanity. He has taken a beating in the last few years, from which he may never recover. Ankles, back, hernia, osteitis pubis, you name it. He may very well be too damaged and too slight of build to be anything close to a full time center again. Reading his own words makes it clear that he himself has considerable doubt that he will ever again be as good as he was.

    And then there’s his free throw insanity. I’m sorry Beans, but shooting 16% from the line allows your coach to suggest anything to get better. ANYTHING. If Nellie had suggested in the press, as Annie Savoy did to Nuke Laloosh, that Biedrins wear a garter belt under his uniform to free up his mind, I would still side with Don Nelson.

    You cannot be an NBA player and shoot 16% from the line. You simply can’t.

    But what was even worse than the 16% itself, was watching the effect it had on Biedrins’ play. It turned him into a complete coward, afraid to attack the rim, afraid to finish his moves, afraid to even receive the ball. He hurt the Warriors terribly with his godawful play on the offensive end.

    Which leaves us where we are today, with a terrified player, feeling alone without his best friend, and with a bit of a persecution complex. Solutions? I don’t really see one. Since the Lee signing, Beans can really only be traded for another center, and they just aren’t out there. So for now, the solution must be this:


  11. I read your essays Feltbot. You are a good writer and have a lot of basketball knowledge. I don’t necessarily agree with your overall views on Nelson. I don’t post much because I *usually* don’t want to get into arguments, which is why, I imagine, that you created this website, to get away from the predictable furor on Adam’s.
    It will be interesting to see what happens if/when Nellie is no more. What will they fight over at Adam’s site and will more participants come over here if there isn’t a perceived “party line” around such a divisive character (DAN)?

  12. Well put, Steve, but I have to ask: Why would you risk your sanity by reading, much less posting, on the TK or AL sites? Life is too short to put up with that wretched garbage.

    Felty: I don’t judge a blog on the basis of how many haters it draws. Quality, not quantity. That’s what I’m looking for and why I’m here. But speaking of quantity, I do wish you’d post more often.

  13. Guys, thanks. I admit that posting on TK’s blog can at times be tantamount to pissing into the wind, but as the Four Tops once sang, I can’t help myself (sugar pie honey bunch LOL). Sick pleasure? :)

    MWLX, LOL. Needn’t worry about me risking my sanity. As a fan of the Giants and Warriors since their Bay Area inception, my sanity went south long ago. :)

  14. Great post, Steve.

  15. Thanks Steve. And Steph’s got a girlfriend, Steph’s got a girlfriend:

    Wow. How are we going to keep our sanity for the next few months? Hopefully next week will turn up something.

  16. HA HA…Steve, hilarious first paragraph!

    What’s funny to me is some of these guys saying that Lacob MUST wipe the slate clean in order “gain credibility”. And are they actually talking boycott now? Please…

    “Fix what needs to be fixed, and don’t try and fix what’s not broken, at least for the time being.”

    Stop making sense, Steve.

  17. rgg, 69 days and counting…

  18. Basketball for Dummies

    Yeh felt, don’t know why your site doesn’t draw more diversity?

    You have such a nice FoxNews “Fair & Balanced” feel to your blog!

  19. BfD: I don’t follow your logic. Doesn’t seem to me that feltbot is deleting or editing what appears on this blog to support his point of view.

    I guess I could be wrong.

  20. Hey, a heckler!

    I’ve noticed this before and it’s never ceased to amuse me, but liking Don Nelson as a coach is frequently associated with right-wing politics. I don’t get it. Does that mean that coaches who emphasize defense above all else, frown on running wild, and demand rigid adherence to the playbook, are left-wing? I’m confused!

  21. Basketball for Dummies

    Just trying to help a brotha out!

    Like to give ya few “Page view’s” , sorta like I check out Hannity & O’Reilly once in awhile :>

    BTW, your slippin’, thought you might have had some comments re Lacob’s poker prowess by now?

  22. Basketball for Dummies

    OG are you saying FoxNews “edits & deletes”?

  23. Basketball for Dummies

    felt did you just add to your heckler post?

    I see it simply as sticking to single minded talking points to the degree of absurdiveness.

    You’r the one that brung it :>

  24. BfD: This being a basketball blog, I’m going to eschew the million-word political diatribe and instead answer…

    Yes. (and I appreciate your faux ‘shocked..SHOCKED!’ tone. Nice.)

  25. Basketball for Dummies


    Can’t resist pointing out the irony of OG saying “Doesn’t seem to me that feltbot is deleting or editing…” at the same time felbot is editing his post.

    Yeh it was a harmless edit, but an edit just the same!

    See ya next time

  26. Give ’em enough rope . . . .

    Man, does this season need to get started.

  27. OK, we need a diversion. From the Greece/Serbia game:

    Kristic said the chair slipped out of his hands.

    I think this guy said it best:

    Мајката во пичка да ти ја ебам тебе, кој ти кажал дека јас сум со шиптарите ?! Вашето Грчко - Српско братство се распаѓа и мило ми е за тоа !

  28. I need to provide an opposing viewpoint:

    Jaaaooo sto nije bio Darko Milicic tu da ih svi pobije!

    (trying to embed the youtube):

  29. Wow! When I read about the fight I had the idea in my head of a Bobby Knight chair slinging and it reportedly “slipped” out of Krstic’s hand. This was like Juan Marichal vs John Roseboro. He went right over the top going for the money.

  30. My last comments were inspired by some of the discussion at another blog. Run the quotes through Google Translate. And then there was the famous Darko interview (warning: very strong — and very comic — language):

  31. Feltbot,

    This is why I read your blog when I want an intelligent perspective on my beloved Warriors. Thanks for the lengthy and insightful treatise on Andris Biedrins. I agree on every point, including the Annie Savoy garter belt reference. Greatest baseball movie ever, but that’s another blog.

    What I have read so far about Joe Lacob encourages me to think that he will give Nellie a fair chance, but it concerns me that the cumulative effect of this latest Biedrins interview on top of the constant unintelligent rants of certain bloggers (yes, I mean you, Kawakami) will hurt Nellie’s chances to coach a good team his final year. Don Nelson must be thrilled at the prospect of coaching a Steph Curry/David Lee tandem, especially if Andria Biedrins gets over his whiny egotistical self and shows up like the center we saw two years ago. Let’s hope Joe Lacob makes the smart move and keeps Nellie as coach this year.

  32. Felt, I enjoyed reading Curry’s interview responses, especially his comments about Nelson. Notice how all the really good players that have ever played for Nelli get it? Even though Nelson is unconventional in so many ways his basketball genius never gets lost in the translation to the Dirks and Currys and Nashs of the NBA.

    Speaking of translations, I hope the Timberwolves enjoyed that little post game interview of Milicic. Always nice to know that you’ve spent your offseason millions on the true high character athletes available.

    Andria, it’s funny you happened to post when you did. I was just wondering to myself last night how many women read and post messages on these sports blogs? I know LOTS of women are just as crazy and passionate about sports and their favorite teams/players as men are, but the usernames on these boards never seem to give gender away. I mean, really, what is “feltbot” in terms of male or female? LOL Take a look at all the usernames on this one page and tell me how many are men and how many are women? Impossible. Any other gals out there besides Andria? :) Anyway, Andria, enjoyed reading your comments. We’re both obviously hoping Nelli returns for at least one more season.

  33. geraldmcgrew

    Re: liking Don Nelson as a coach is frequently associated with right-wing politics.

    When coach of the Bucks, Nellie road a tractor in a demonstration demanding more protection for family farmers. Nellie plays poker and “smokes” with Willie Nelson, Woody Harrelson, and Owen Wilson. Lord of the slow-down Triangle Offense Phil Jackson supports the Arizona immigration law. Running Steve Nash and the running Phoenix Suns oppose the Arizona immigration law (Nash also publicly opposed the Iraq War before almost any other pro athletes had the huevos to do so).

    Draw your own conclusions.

  34. Personally, I read the translation of the AB interview and felt he simply expressed his opinions. I have no problem with that. Sure, it would have been nice if he sounded more positive, but there has been a lot of chaos on this team the last couple of years, his name has appeared in several trade rumors, the roster itself has changed dramatically more than once. All in all, he seemed to dealing with it OK.

    It’s the columnists who have spun it as ranting and tantrums. I don’t read them, so I don’t know what quotes have attracted the sharks. For now, I expect Andris to show up for TC and do his best to help the team.

  35. Biedrins is under pressure and obviously entertaining some heavy doubts — we see it in his play, especially free throw shooting. Maybe it did him some good to air these out in public. Better that than sit on them. And now that his concerns are out, he has a chance to look at and rethink them.

    Sorry to play the amateur shrink.

    And maybe it says something about his relationship with the team? Maybe he’s in a place where he feels comfortable to speak up? This is healthy.

    AB and the team are stuck — it’s hard to find centers, and everyone knows this. All parties have a chance now to think about how they can work together. A player at another position with his performance last year would have been traded. Everyone knows this as well.

    I’ve forgotten the game, but I remember when AB was asked to play and was obviously hurt and had to leave. Nelson’s first comment in the interview was that that was a mistake — almost his exact words, and his recognition and admission of his fault were sincere.

    Many have criticized Nelson for his relationship with his players. I’m only guessing, but I don’t buy it. His bedside manner I’m sure sucks and I’m sure he isn’t sensitive or tactful, that others do it better, but we’ve all had coaches or parents or teachers who speak in blunt, direct ways and learned to interpret their manner and deal with them, and not take their words at face value. We learn to distinguish the real monsters from those who mean well and are just blunt and gruff.

    Players have spoken out, but there hasn’t been that much that bad. Also all the losing hasn’t sat with anyone very well the last decade. But there was nothing forced or phony about the way the team embraced Nelson when he took the lead in wins.

    Coaching pros can’t be an easy job. This is third hand, but I remember someone talking about the problems Dallas had with Charles Haley, after being traded there from SF 49s. He repeated something RB Roger Craig said, that Walsh could have dealt with the problem. Walsh was a rare talent.

  36. Steve,

    I would hope that there are other women sports fans out there reading and posting on blogs. I know a few of us sports fans, although admittedly, most of my women friends’ eyes glaze over and they feel a strong urge to head to Nordstrom when I start talking Warriors basketball or Giants baseball. Luckily, my guy is a passionate sports fan, too, so there is no shortage of lively conversation.

    Feltbot is right on the money that Don Nelson has brought us the most beautiful and entertaining basketball we have had. He is the only coach who has made the team relevant, or even watchable, and believe me, I’ve watched for years. Nellie’s genius at matchups gave the Warriors more wins last year than they should have gotten, given the injury-ridden, unpredictable and less-than-star-caliber team he had to work with.

    And while I’m sure his bedside manner leaves a lot to be desired, isn’t it interesting that Don Nelson has no problems with hard-working players with a high basketball IQ? Call me an elitist, but I don’t think it’s a coincidence. As for Nellie’s chemistry with last year’s team, take a look at the games at the end of the season last year, when there was really nothing to play for once Nellie got his wins record. That team was playing for love of the game, and, I believe, love of the coach. I would sure like to find out this year.

    As for Nellie’s relationships with some of the players who have left, your descriptions of the “disgruntled” players was right on, to a man. And then we have posts like the one saying how Keith Smart was more important to Mikael Pietrus than Don Nelson. I like Keith Smart, too, but please.

    Chris Mullin? Great player, not so great GM. If the new ownership wants to do something to acknowledge his playing career, that would be nice. But please do not hire him.

    The person who has impressed me is Larry Riley, who has made some nice moves since he got the GM job, especially given the financial and reputation constraints he had to work with. He may not be the glamorous choice, but he deserves a shot from the new ownership, as does Nellie.

    I’m taking a wild guess, given his choice of profession and his good taste in Scotch, that a Feltbot is a guy.

  37. I’m not sure a feltbot must be a guy, but this one most decidedly is!

    Nice post, Andria. Very well put. I hope Joe Lacob reads it.

  38. Andria, where you been, woman?! :) Funny how great minds think alike. LOL Seriously, please chime in more often. While this site is great, the one thing it’s lacking is sex appeal (sorry, Nelli, but your picture just doesn’t do it for me LOL), and there’s nothing sexier than a smart woman. And from the perspective of a sports fanatic like myself, the combination of a smart woman who loves sports is off the charts. While I’m mid-50s and never been married, my best relationships (girlfriends) have always been the ones who’ve shared my love of sports.

    The topic of women and their interest in sports is something that’s always been intriguing to me. When you watch a game on TV there are always seemingly hundreds of crowd shots. And in those shots are lots of women. Not necessarily outnumbering men, but still plenty of gals. Now, the question is, are they there to watch the game, to watch the men, to simply accompany their boyfriends/husbands, or (most sinister-like LOL) to keep an eye on their significant other? OR all of the above?

    Sports blogs are well attended these days yet with the anonymity of it all the gender of the bloggers is a big unknown, not that it really matters. Afterall, a fan is a fan. Passion is passion. An opinion is an opinion. And a moron is a moron. What would a blog be like without each and every one?

    Fortunately, here at the Feltbot saloon, there’s lot of fans, lots of passion, lots of opinions, and very few morons. And there’s also at least one “hip chick”. All good reasons for me to return. Now, about those Warriors……..


    ATHENS, Greece (AP)—The U.S. national basketball team finalized its roster for the world championships when Celtics star Rajon Rondo(notes) asked to withdraw from consideration.

    Rondo had started the Americans first two exhibition games, then surprisingly didn’t play at all Sunday when the U.S. edged Spain.

    The final 12-man roster set Tuesday includes: Kevin Durant(notes), Derrick Rose(notes), Rudy Gay(notes), Lamar Odom(notes), Chauncey Billups(notes), Danny Granger(notes), Russell Westbrook(notes), Eric Gordon(notes), Stephen Curry(notes), Kevin Love(notes), Tyson Chandler(notes) and Andre Iguodala(notes).

    Coach Mike Krzyzewski’s team has one more tuneup against Greece on Wednesday. The world championships start Saturday in Turkey and run through Sept. 12;_ylt=Ap84g64SA3kQ5Mmv3Hgynsu8vLYF?slug=ap-us-rondo

  40. This is surprising. This ESPN article makes it sound like it was Rondo who was on the bubble:

    “It’s not so much what Rajon has to show, it’s what our team needs. We’ve found a good lineup, and the international game is so different from the NBA game, you can ask any of these guys,” Krzyzewski said. “Part of it is to make sure that we try not to have two non-shooters out on the court, and there’s the physicality, too.”

    I’m happy for Steph, but I wish there were an informal understanding that US NBA starters not play in these things, and maybe international NBA’ers would follow suit. These guys need a break from a grueling NBA season. Instead, play D-leaguers, college players, and NBA bench players. These guys would get good experience and good exposure. We all know who the best teams are in the world, even without their international players.

  41. Possibly they allowed Rondo a more dignified way to exit? He would “withdraw” as opposed to being “cut”.

  42. Very very odd that Rondo has withdrawn. Had to be an ego thing, because he was guaranteed to make the team. Perhaps he found out he would be a back-up and didn’t like it.

    I never feared for Curry. This team is desperate for shooting, and you can see Coach K’s latest comment: “we try not to have 2 non-shooters on the floor.” With Rose, Westbrook and Iguodala all on the team that’s pretty tough to do. I expect Curry to get significant minutes if his ankle’s good to go.

  43. The way the announcers put it, Rondo was benched Sunday against Spain so he could rest. Now I wonder — was Coach K trying to reassure himself about Gordon and Westbrook?

  44. Ann Killion, in her SI piece, is blaming all the Warrior problems of the last few years on Nelson. She’s not just wrong. The article is simply dumb. But to state such an argument in a national organ, without going into all the factors (which I don’t think anyone has sorted out yet), is utterly irresponsible.

  45. What’s striking about the piece is just how unoriginal it is. She literally plagiarized every bit of mis-analysis, unprovable innuendo, and outright falsehood that her colleagues at the Merc, Kawakami and Lauridsen, have treated us to over the years.

    Everyone is entitled to their own point of view. But ignorance and shoddy journalism are inexcusable.

  46. Don Nelson can be an interesting coach to play for. What was it like for you?

    Curry: It was a tough year for him, having to deal with inconsistent lineups, not knowing who was going to be healthy day in and day out. He tried to mix and match the lineups to counter the other teams and use our strengths. But with him being so late in his career and near the end of his contract, there were a lot of distractions around him that you had to deal with from the media and the front office. You just have to stay focused on what’s going on inside that locker room. He has a different approach to the game. And for me, he put me in position to be successful. He’s definitely a players’ coach and it was nice to see his wisdom come out throughout the course of the season.


    Funny how you never read something like that interview snippet of Curry in the local media, only more garbage. Kawakami, Killion, Poole, Jenkins, Ostler, Ratto, etc etc etc. The names change but the subject line always stays the same. What a joke.

  47. It seems as if Don Nelson is on his way out. Keith Smart to head coach as a trial for this season.

  48. Murmur, what is that site, and who authored the post? I’ll be disappointed if the news is true, but I find it highly amusing that this obscure site broke the story instead of Kawakami, Steinmetz or one of the other Nellie headhunters.

  49. From the site:

    “ is written by a 23 year old graduate of UCSB who was born and raised in the greater bay area. Will grew up watching the Niners win championships, the glory days of Run T.M.C. from the Warriors and seeing Barry Bonds blast homer after homer into McCovey Cove. He fell in love with sports at a young age and now has a vast knowledge base and insight that he wants to share with the rest of Northern California.

    Will’s buddy Tyler built the website and is also a contributing author focusing on the Sacramento Kings and 49ers with brief forays into the Raiders and Giants.”

    Hey, it’s Will and his buddy Tyler…it’s gotta be legit!

  50. I think we are in the midst of a media campaign. One of the reasons Nelson draws so much flak is that he’s been around so long. No one talks about the scores of other coaches who come and go — and the speed at which they come and go should slow some of us down when we think about our next coach. I wonder how unpopular he actually is among the fans.

    It’s amazing how bad the reporting on Nelson (and everything else) is. They all try to read faces and and project and pass on suspicions and basically just guess. No one knows what’s going on, and it doesn’t sound like they have much access behind the scenes. From Kawakami on down (or up), it doesn’t even look like they are trying. The blogs, of course, are even worse — and there’s a pathology there someone should study.

    But Killion’s SI piece is the worst. She’s just passing on insubstantial rumors and taking what doesn’t amount to anything more than a personal bias before the nation’s eye.

    I guess it’s not amazing. It’s how we do things now.

    The FO must still be dealing. Does anybody have any idea when they will make their next move? What kind of schedule are they on? I assume they’ll want to do something else before training camp.

  51. Nelson’s unpopularity:

    As best I can tell, a handful of bloggers at another blog, and 3-4 local columnists who just aren’t very good at what they do — I almost never learn anything insightful about b-ball or the Warriors from their columns.

  52. geraldmcgrew

    Don’t remember where I saw it, but I read that Amundsen would likely decide where he’s going this week, though I don’t know if he’s someone you’d consider a “move.”

  53. It’s not about Nelson; it’s about the calendar. Warriors fans (and pundits) are not used to having the same coach for more than 2 years.

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