F is for Fail: Celtics 107 Warriors 103 + Al Thornton + Grading Joe Lacob

Once again, I did not expect the Warriors to walk into Boston Garden and come out with a win.  But once again, I am beside myself with HOW they lost.  Tell me something, Joe Lacob.  How did the Celtics win this game pulling down a measly 28 rebounds, to the Warriors 39?  Can you answer that?  How about you, Keith Smart?

I’ll answer it for you.  They did it with Nellieball.  The Boston Celtics out-Nellieballed the Golden State Warriors.

The Celtics went small in the middle of the second quarter, with Jeff Green at 4 and Garnett at 5.  Keith Smart, who has a better small ball lineup than the Celtics, refused to match up. Stayed big. The result? Green beats the Warriors bigs down the court for an alley-oop at 6:35.  Boston spreads the floor, and makes 4 passes resulting in a wide-open Allen three at 5:24.  Boston goes on a 14-4 run.

Smart played big virtually all game. Vlad Rad was used exclusively at 3. Reggie Williams barely got off the bench (what is up with that?). Curry only got 31 minutes (what is up with that?).  The Warriors payed the price with their inability to guard the Celtics’ small ball.  Pierce and Green ran rampant all game long.  Until crunch time.

It wasn’t until late in the fourth quarter that Smart got a version of his best lineup on the floor: Lee at 5, Wright at 4, Williams, Curry, Ellis.  What happened? The Warriors guarded better, generated turnovers, ran the ball, and spread the floor, going on a nice run to get within 1 point after being down by as much as 17.

Here’s how Jim Barnett described it at 3:32 4th Q:

“Not many plays are being called, they’re just spreading it out trying to stretch the defense, letting Monta drive or shoot.”

This lineup was on the floor for precisely 4 minutes in this game.  Can you imagine what this game might have been if the Warriors had played small for say, 20 minutes?  Why do the Warriors have to wait until they are desperate to get their best lineups on the floor?  Is it Smart, or is it Lacob?

It is beyond ironic to me that in an incredible season in which the Spurs, the Celtics, and a Pat Riley team all transformed themselves into great Nellieball teams — that the Golden State Warriors, equipped with one of the best Nellieball rosters in creation, are busy trying to turn themselves into something else.

The Spurs, Celtics and Pat Riley’s Heat, for heaven’s sake. They understand their rosters.

The Warriors? They’re the Nellieball team that doesn’t know they’re a Nellieball team. The Nellieball team that doesn’t WANT to be a Nellieball team.

Incredible.

AL THORNTON

After months of doing absolutely nothing to help take the load off Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry, Joe Lacob finally made his move.  The Warriors acquired… Al Thornton?

I am completely baffled by this move.  Baffled first of all, that an NBA GM could go 3/4 of a season before attempting to reinforce the worst bench in the NBA, when he had the core of a playoff team in his starters.  But also baffled that when he finally did make his move, it did absolutely nothing to address the team’s biggest need.

Does Al Thornton help relieve the defensive load of Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry?  It is very hard to see how, and I can’t believe that was the intent of this move. Perhaps it will free Dorell Wright to slide to the two?  But even assuming Wright can guard twos, is that where you want to employ him? Out on the perimeter, where his shot-blocking and knack for patrolling the passing lanes are forfeit?

As for Al Thornton, he can’t guard twos. He can’t guard threes either.  And he can’t guard fours. Or won’t.  Which is another thing that has me baffled.  Does Joe Lacob have any idea who Al Thornton is?  Does he have any idea what position Al Thornton plays?

First, who he is.  Al Thornton is a very talented mid-range scorer.  He is also a pretty good rebounder, and very clever at getting his shot off in the paint (cf., Lou Amundson).  What Al Thornton is not, is a defender. He simply doesn’t do it.  He is also not a passer.  Simply doesn’t do that either, although we saw him try to break the mold in his first action as a Warrior.

Al Thornton is one of the most selfish players in the league.  Which is exactly what Donald Sterling called him, right after he booted him off the Clippers. Flip Saunders, his second coach, couldn’t stand to put him on the court, and the Wizards couldn’t wait to get rid of him.

How is that going to fit into the Warriors’ wonderfully unselfish offense?  Into Keith Smart’s schemes for defensive greatness?

How is that going to play in the lockerroom?  Baffling.

Al Thornton is also not a small forward, although his size might suggest otherwise. 6-8″ 235.  Because there is not a single small forward in the NBA that Al Thornton can defend. Not one.

He’s also not a small forward because on offense he doesn’t spread the floor. He actually shot 35% from three in his first two seasons, but in very limited attempts. This season, his three-point shooting fell off a cliff, at 16%. (Hey, isn’t that Beans’ FT %?) He is far more comfortable hoisting 15 footers, or operating under the basket. Which is what makes his shooting percentage so high (47%).

What Al Thornton is, is a small ball power-forward.  Think about that for a second.  Joe Lacob went out and got himself a small ball power-forward. Remember Cedric Ceballos?  That’s exactly who Al Thornton is, but without the rebounding genius. Or Jeff Green, whom we saw tonight, without the brains or defensive desire.

Does Joe Lacob know that’s what he did? Was this an intentional move? I thought the Warriors were determined to play big going forward? Baffling.

Anyway, let’s assume the Warriors do want to play Thornton at the four. There is evidence for that, because that is where they actually did play him tonight, for two minutes at the end of the first half. Guarding Nenad Krstic! (Hey, there’s a player he can guard!) The frontline featured Lee, Thornton and Wright.

This lineup might be decent offensively, with David Lee playing high post, and Al Thornton low.  Thornton is actually quite good in the low post. (Oh my god.  It just hit me. Joe Lacob sees Al Thornton as an answer to his much publicized quest for low-post players.)

There are at least three problems with this thinking.  First is that when the ball goes in to Thornton, it never comes back out. So you can wipe out all thoughts of the Warriors finally getting to play inside out.

Second is that it is not the best lineup for Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry.  They thrive in a Nellieball offense, with Vlad Rad or DWright spreading the floor at the four.  That is the Warriors best lineup.  That’s the lineup, in fact, that got them back into tonight’s Celtics game.

Third is that this move will permanently take Vlad Rad away from his best position, power forward.  I’m sure that Lacob goes nuts watching Vlad Rad play the four. OMG, that Lacob quotient!  Wretched! (But what about that +/- ?) If I am correct, from now on we will see Vlad chiefly at the three, which is where we saw him play tonight. Miserably.

That’s the basketball side of things, as I see them.  Matt Steinmetz offered a possible financial answer to my bafflement in tonight’s broadcast: he speculated that Thornton might be insurance against the possibility of losing Reggie Williams, who is going to be a restricted free agent.  He noted that Williams was himself the player that made Anthony Morrow expendable.

Is Steinmetz correct? I sincerely doubt it.  First of all, I think Steinmetz is confused about Thornton’s natural position.  I think he thinks Thornton and Williams play the same position. They don’t.

But second, I think it is obvious whom Thornton is replacing on the Warriors: Vladimir Radmanovich. Can you see Joe Lacob re-signing the Warriors’ only true Nellieball four? I can’t.

I’m not a huge fan of Vlad Rad. And I have a sneaking suspicion that he will return to his dog kennel as soon as he gets his next contract. (Or perhaps it’s time for him to go back to Europe.) But I will say this: Vladimir Radmanovich, for all his hair-destroying eccentricities, is a basketball player. He is a defender. An offensive facilitator. Something more than just a shooter.

Something more than Al Thornton.

JOE LACOB

I’m ready to give Joe Lacob his final grade for his first season.  If you read my “Joe Lacob Tanked this Season” piece, you already know what’s coming.  (But I’m letting my readers indicate their opinion too, in my second-ever poll on this site.)

Here’s a restatement of my bill of indictment against Lacob as GM of the Warriors:

1) Fired Don Nelson in the last year of the contract, at the very moment he got the roster of his dreams.  Thus denying a Hall of Fame coach and GM — as well as Warriors fans — one last glorious, thrilling, totally improbable playoff run.

(Many readers will feel that I need not go on. That Lacob could never do right in my eyes after this. They would be wrong.)

2) Replaced Nellie with Keith Smart, a coach either too incompetent or too fearful for his job to know what to do with the roster he inherited.

3) By virtue of his personnel decisions, guaranteed that the Warriors would have no shot at the playoffs.  Here is the list of those decisions:

  • Jeremy Lin.  Ticket and jersey sales over a veteran back-up point guard.
  • Lou Amundson over Anthony Tolliver.
  • Signing Acie Law.
  • Dan Gadzuric (the Warriors only true back-up center) and Brandan Wright for a second round pick.
  • Al Thornton.  After the season was already gone.
  • Refusing to ever fix the Warriors deplorable guard situation. Refusing to let Riley look to the D-Leagues to repair the Warriors bench.

Jeremy Lin and Lou Amundson are not NBA players.  They would not be in the league if it weren’t for Joe Lacob.  The damage that Lin did to the Warriors bench is incalculable.  Three undersized back-up guards who can’t shoot. No one reliable behind Monta and Curry.

The damage that Lou Amundson did to the Warriors front court bench was also incalculable.  A power forward that can’t play alongside Biedrins. Both unable to hit the broad side of a barn. Both afraid to go to the hoop, for fear of getting fouled and embarassing themselves at the line.

Is Acie Law an NBA player? Is Acie Law the most helpful player that the Warriors could find for the Warriors backcourt this season?

Dan Gadzuric was a very serviceable back-up center who gave the Warriors some decent minutes early in the season.  Shipping him out at the very moment that Biedrins was collapsing was an unmistakeable sign that the tank was on.

But those signs were unmistakeable from the very beginning of this season, with Lacob’s refusal to let Riley help the bench.  WHERE WERE THE D-LEAGUERS THAT COULD HAVE HELPED THIS TEAM? You know they were out there. They are always out there. Azubuike, Barnes, Watson, Williams, Tolliver. Always.

Joe Lacob refused to let Riley fix the Warriors’ bench.  Because the tank was on.

Which brings me to the subject of the second round pick that Lacob acquired. Lacob recently reiterated in his latest PR interview with Bob Fitzgerald that the Warriors new policy is to accumulate draft picks. This runs directly counter to Nelson and Riley’s policy that it is easier to find ready-made talent in the D-leagues.

I will make you a little bet.  I will lay you 100-1 on a dollar that the player Joe Lacob drafts with that second round pick will never be better than Azubuike, Barnes, Watson, Williams or Tolliver were in their first seasons with Don Nelson.

As for Al Thornton, whatever this move was intended for, it was not to make the Warriors better this season. The move the Warriors needed this season was very simple, and obvious to Joe Lacob. They needed to dump Jeremy Lin. Buy out Charlie Bell. Ignore Acie Law. And get some playable BIG GUARDS out of the D-league.

And they needed to do it months before the trade deadline.

4) The Spin. Whatever else Joe Lacob is, he is brilliant at spinning his side of things.  He is a good communicator, with an unerring sense of when a big interview is required to settle the raging fan base.

Joe Lacob’s spin is this:  He and Larry Riley tried everything possible at the trading deadline to get something done.  They tried very hard to do a “big” deal, and came very close, but just came away empty handed.

This is also Joe Lacob’s spin: All of the Warriors’ woes are due to the “sins of the past.”

In my opinion, Joe Lacob’s spin is completely bogus. It is intended to deceive. He is trying to pull the wool over Warriors’ fans eyes.

If Don Nelson were coaching this team, with Anthony Tolliver spreading the floor instead of Lou Amundson, and several capable big guards in place of Lin and Law and Bell, and David Lee playing center and DWright and Vlad Rad playing power forward in the small ball unit — not just in desperation at the end of games, but for significant minutes — and Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis and Reggie Williams unleashed, and the Warriors running and shooting freely, there is no telling what the Warriors record would be right now. I don’t think many people think it wouldn’t be better than it is right now. And that means playoff contention.

The Warriors never needed a “big” move from Joe Lacob to contend this season. They needed competent little moves. The right D-leaguers. The right system. An empowered coach.

It was not the “sins of the past” that kept the Warriors from contending for the playoffs this season. It was the sins of the present. Joe Lacob’s sins. Joe Lacob’s ego, that demanded that HE be the one to get the Warriors over the threshold of playoff contention. His “big” moves. His draft picks. His new coach. His new system.

That is why the tank has been on this season. In all of my years watching the NBA, I don’t believe I have ever seen a GM do his team like Joe Lacob did the Warriors this season. Ever. Have you?

My grade for Joe Lacob’s first season as Warriors GM is clear:  F.

Chris Cohan would have been better.

24 Responses to F is for Fail: Celtics 107 Warriors 103 + Al Thornton + Grading Joe Lacob

  1. FromWayDowntown

    Man, your blog posts are so frustrating because they ring true almost to 100%.

    The All Star Break crushed all my hopes for this season and the near future. I am constantly feeling sorry for Nellie because he would have loved to utilize this team. This is just so sad.

    Minor nitpick: Lou Amundson would be in the league even if the Dubs hadn`t signed him. Hustling Bigs are always welcome.

  2. Hey Feltie

    Marvelous column as usual. Two questions:

    1) Who will be the Dubs replacement for coach next year?

    2) Whom do you want to be the Dubs replacement for coach next year?

  3. Man, you really hate Al Thornton. I’m a Warriors fan that lives in DC and while Thornton wasn’t exactly a game changer, he was actually pretty good and one of the few forwards on our team that plays hard. We cut him not because we didn’t like his play, but because we have Josh Howard, Rashard Lewis, Yi Jianlian, Trevor Booker and Nick Young, all of whom play small forward either all of the time or some of the time. There simply weren’t minutes for him.

    Think of Thornton as a bench scorer who gets to the line, plays aggressively and doesn’t take stupid threes that he can’t make (Maggette anyone?) and you’ll be fine with the pickup. He shouldn’t play more than 15-20 minutes a night, but I’m assuming we didn’t get him for anything more than that.

  4. I get tired of trying to figure out motives when we have so little to go on, but am skeptical Lacob intentionally tried to tank. He won’t succeed, not enough to get a good lottery number. It would be a PR disaster, and this is a FO that cares about impressions, maybe more than basketball. Listen to Guber.

    Also, it gives Lacob too much credit. I think the answer is much simpler and much more damning and frightening: he’s doing what he thinks is right.

    At any rate, the results are the same with either interpretation, and that’s all we should care about.

    Lacob has been blinded by his experience with the Celtics, hardly a place to learn anything useful for guiding the Warriors, given their experience and organization—and luck in getting Garnett. This much seems pretty clear—he’s said it repeatedly—that he’s committed to a franchise player mode of thinking, and is banking the club’s future on that. It looks like cap space is being preserved to land some big name this summer. I don’t know who he thinks he can get. Who knows what likely compromise he will take, at the expense of the salary cap and the team. And I haven’t heard any noise from him about taking care of the team’s most glaring and basic deficit, its horrible bench. The club will never have a future until it fixes that.

    It is also clear that Lacob does not know the details about the game or this team in particular. In his interview with Gary Radnich, he did not know who Chris Hunter was. A player who scored 20+ points against the Lakers last year gets my attention and makes me think nice thoughts about the D league. It is also apparent he did not watch the games closely last year or learn anything. He would have seen that a horribly hobbled team roster-wise can do remarkable things with a few talented players and a handful more of capable. Of course he didn’t ask Nelson’s input to corroborate. And then of course there’s Amundson.

    He’s said he’s trying to give Smart and Riley freedom and is waiting to see what they do this year. Maybe so, but he’s doing it on his terms, and I’m tremendously skeptical either feels the freedom to influence key decisions on the roster. Smart early on said he had five and a half players. This should have got Lacob’s quick attention and immediate action. It did not. And it’s hard to believe Riley is not constrained by what Lacob wants, saving big bucks for a big name player.

    Lacob, in essence, has ensured that the team would have what we have seen, a so-so record utterly open to interpretation, which will only give him more cause to keep control, make whatever decision he wants, and wreak havoc on the club. This year was a failed experiment. Decisions were not made to solidify and build the club, to give better results that might influence its future. We’ll never know what Smart might have done if he simply had more pieces to work with.

    I’m making this up, but I bet it’s a very conservative estimate. Add everything up, offense and defense, and Tolliver gives +5 points a game this year over Amundson. He can put up numbers on occasion—he showed that last year—something Amundson will never be able to do. He’s much smarter on defense, and I bet boards would be the same, or higher, especially since he’d be in the game more minutes and Amundson often rebounds himself on his flailing attempts. He is smart, he can learn, and he will try anything, play any position asked to (cf. Thornton). And he was in our hands and was not expensive.

  5. Feltie, you’re right, the dubs FO did a terrible job this year. But placing the blame on Lacob’s attempt to aggrandize himself simply doesn’t follow.

    Unlike most teams, the Warriors don’t have a single majority owner who can do as he pleases. Lacob is not “the” owner, he is merely the public face of an investment syndicate. As such, the most important part of his job is to protect the investment, and the hardest part of his job would be to keep all the investors happy if the property loses value – which it would do if the team doesn’t live up to fan expections. To intentionally give himself a headache like that, even in the short term, is simply not something a fund manager would ever choose to do.

    No, Lacob isn’t intentionally trying to tank the season. The most likely explanation is that he’s very, very slow to make decisions. To a fund manager, every new player contract would have to look like a supplemental investment in the franchise. He explains his proposed moves to his other investors, he seeks consensus, then moves. Eventually. His son is there primarily to help quantify his decision-making, to explain it to his investors in a language they understand. Even if Lacob had a deep background in the business of running an NBA team, which he doesn’t, “the process” would take longer than we’re used to seeing from single-owner businesses with an experienced pro as GM.

    It’s also highly likely that as a GM Lacob couldn’t find his ass with a GPS, not this year.

    Being a fan is great. Being a new kid in the big chair, with lots of other people’s money on the line, would have to make one extremely cautious.

  6. Thanks for the perspectives, rgg and white hat. Interesting and thought-provoking reading.

    Sam, I don’t hate Thornton. I think I tried to give a balanced view of his attributes both positive and negative. And I think he might be a productive player in the right situation. I simply am puzzled about how Lacob intends to fit him into this Warriors roster. As always, I will watch and try to write about what I see with an open mind.

    Mr. Gundy, you are my favorite NBA color guy, and my least favorite coach. I have no idea who the next Warriors coach will be, but I pray it’s not you. None of the guys I love — Pop, Karl, D’Antoni, Gentry — will be available. I’m not sure there’s another coach in the league who would know what to do with a Curry /Ellis backcourt.

    There was big breaking news on the twitterverse this morning. At the Sloan Sports Conference being held at MIT, Joe Lacob was quoted as saying he checks if Warriors bloggers are “real fans” by looking to see whether they are season ticket holders.

    Needless to say, this extremely arrogant statement was met with outrage, not least of all from yours truly. I will have a lot more to say about this subject going forward, probably in a separate post. But here’s an interesting immediate take from a local blogger:
    http://www.bayareasportsguy.com/joe-lacob-when-keeping-it-real-goes-wrong/

  7. He had to be joking, people. Among the various hoops bloggers, most are known journalists (who get into games for free), and among the people who post on blogs (which he probably meant), who uses their real name?

  8. Feltbot,

    I think we needed a new bench small forward since Rad gives us almost nothing. One of our bench’s problems has been scoring and Thornton is a player who is decent enough at creating points for himself. I don’t know if there were any better small forward options available on the open market, but I would definitely say he fills a need.

  9. Re: Al Thornton
    Last Wed, Mar 2nd, this intriguing item appeared under “Wednesday Bullets” in Henry Abbott’s popular ESPN blog “True Hoop”:

    John Hollinger (Insider): “If the question is ‘How do we get our offensive-minded, occasionally scatter-brained, rarely defending team to play smarter, defend better and do more of the little things?’ then ‘Sign Al Thornton’ is most definitely NOT the answer.”

    I do not have ESPN Insider, so I could not access this story. Perhaps you or someone here is a member and can give us the gist of the story.

  10. Dear Mr Lacob

    Im a season ticket holder with a psuedonym to protect my innocence, who is a core Feltbot follower and sees many other NBA, College and High School games. And Like Feltbot, Im serious about hoops. And love the Warriors (AKA Chicago Cubs of Basketball if you think about it).
    Finally, Im in the biz world having had experience with Venture Capitalists who think because they haul a truckload of cash and have had success in making money in a bubble ec0nomy, that they have the ability to run the Operations group of the Company they buy. All the while, they continue to run the acqusition into the ground.

  11. Gordon Gecko - Warriors Fan

    And you forgot, VCs have yes men…

    Here is the link to the Lacob Season ticket holder article.
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/03/05/SPD41I4OC7.DTL

    Yes, Virginia, there is no Santa Claus at least at Golden State.

  12. How many coaches attended this Sloan Sports Conference? It sounds like a crock.

    Has Lacob talked to anyone with actual experience in the game? He punted on the one guy he once had on his payroll.

    Basketball is being abducted by PR men and gee whiz guys. Look at what they have done for our culture, our economy. Look at what promoters and the media did to boxing.

    A basketball team is a de facto public trust, which Lacob seems to ignore.

    I suppose if we don’t like what he does with the team we can move elsewhere.

  13. Lacob turns to Kawakami to walk back his “bloggers aren’t real fans” comments:

    http://blogs.mercurynews.com/kawakami/2011/03/05/lacob-clarifies-the-last-thing-id-want-to-do-is-denigrate-the-online-community/

    He is asking us to believe that he could confuse the term “bloggers” with “angry emailers.” Do you buy this? Or just more expert PR spin?

  14. omg I was right, Lacob and Smart don’t know what position Thornton plays:

    “Smart said Williams and Vladimir Radmanovic will, for the time being, get the majority of the small forward minutes behind starter Dorell Wright. Thornton, who played two minutes at power forward in Boston on Friday, will play mostly small forward and some shooting guard when the Warriors want to go big, Smart said.”

    http://www.mercurynews.com/warriors/ci_17542902

  15. WheresMyChippy

    Curry played one minute in the 4th.

    Biedrins started overtime when the 76ers tallest player on the floor was Young.

    Udoh did not play in the 4th or overtime.

    It’s infuriating.

  16. WMChippy, I too noticed the game tonight evolved into a smallball competition. I thought the Warriors had them…except Philadelphia apparently has a better smallball unit. I didn’t have any problem at all with Curry sitting out the 4th. It looked like the type of game where one turnover by either team would swing the game. Sorry, Curry fans, that area is not his strong suit.

    Oh, and can we please dispense with the Monta-hate about the number of shots he puts up? He was cold early but he AGAIN put the team on his back in the 4th quarter and forced it to overtime. I know there are some people who will look at the stats and scream he hurt the team; but there’s no hope for some people in the real world…

  17. Oregon Guy: Are you kidding? Curry and Udoh had the highest +- for the W’s in the game, I believe. Curry was their best offensive player before Smart sat him. When Smart first sat Curry in the late first Q and brought in Law the game went from tied to -16 by the time Smart got Curry back in. And then he sits Curry again for nearly the entire 4th Q. Ditto for sitting Udoh for the 4th Q and OT. How do the Warriors try to win a smallball 4th Q with Curry on the bench? Udoh and Curry should have been in the game for most of the 4th Q. Smart is overmatched by an opposing coach again! This time, Doug Collins ate his lunch and dinner.

  18. re lacob ‘statement’: i live abroad and have never bought a ticket to a warrior game, yet i’ve been following them even when only thing i could watch was gamecast, and i ‘watched’ it live, meaning staying up 6.30 in the morning, messing my everyday life, health and nervous system.

    but i’m not a real fan, because i have MUCH less MONEY (so i can’t come whenever i want with personal jet) than he or people that have the opportunity . (that i have tons of heart, it seems to matter zero in being a fan).

    retarded concept of fanhood, if you ask me.

  19. Thanks Feltbot,
    Lacob “meant” that bloggers aren’t real fans because many of them are actual W’s employees. This should clear up any misunderstandings regarding this issue.

    Now Peter Gruber’s comment regarding W’s fans not caring so much about winning and losing, but wanting drama… Now THAT is a below-the-belt suckerpunch to the groin of W’s fans! Someone muzzle Gruber please!

    RE: Thornton – Thornton’d do well as a small ball PF offensively. He’s a nice scorer who could space the floor with his mid-range game and add a little from three (35% or so career on limited threes is workable) who can also take it to the rim and draw fouls. At least we have another big besides Lee/Vlad who could take a shot late in the game and make his damn free throws. Andris/Amundson/Udoh/Adrien all scare me with the ball in their hands late in a game. So he doesn’t pass… I think our bigs pass too much out of the key anyways! And he is a good offensive rebounder! And notso good defensive rebounder!

    True dat, Lacob really screwed the W’s fans one last dance with coach Nellie. However, I’m most displeased with Nellie’s loss as a GM. Acquiring nice players is Nellie’s true talent. Did Nellie want Udoh drafted? Or would he have chosen Greg Monroe – a skilled big more in line with Nellie’s system. Who knows – without Nellie, the W’s don’t draft Curry or sign Dorell Wright or find Reggie Williams without Nellie telling Riley what to do and how many ice cubes to put in his glass of Scotch.

    Lacob has no credible experience as a talent evaluator, although he did love Landry Fields (Stanford product) who is the steal of this year’s draft.

    I don’t think Jeremy Lin is a dropout yet. He can defend and attack and finish at the basket well. Should he ever put a shot together, he’ll be a nice role player. I prefer Lin to Bell and Law for sure. The 14th or 15th player on the roster is not worthy of so much of our wasted breath.

  20. Boston’s small line-up consists of Rondo, Allen, Pierce, Green. and Garnett. How can you say that the Warriors small line-up of Curry, Ellis,
    Williams, D. Wright, and D.Lee, are better?

    Boston did go on a 14-4 run in the second quarter by shooting 8-10 from the field, the Warriors shot 5-10 during the same period and committed two turnovers. At various times during the run we had Radman and Amundson on the court.

    I think you are making a big mistake saying that the Warriors should play small ball more. We don’t have enough consistent shooters to do so, and none of the players you want on the court are capable of playing good defense.

    That’s not to say that Biedrins time the court should not be limited as I believe in one stretch Boston was 10-10 from the field when he was playing. Boston shot 54% from the field for the game. They did this with the Warriors playing big and small. A team can’t beat Boston if they shoot such a high %.

    We disagree on who our best line-up is on the court. I would say it is Curry, Ellis, Williams, D.Lee and Udoh. You say it’s Curry, Ellis, Williams, D. Wright, and D.Lee.

    I agree that Thornton was not our greatest need, but I do think he’s a good addition.

    I’m glad that Lacob did not pull off the trade of Murphy and C.Bell for Jamison, that would have left us with virtually no money to spend on free agency and the albatross of Jamison’s bloated $15 million contract for next year.

  21. “Boston’s small line-up consists of Rondo, Allen, Pierce, Green. and Garnett. How can you say that the Warriors small line-up of Curry, Ellis,
    Williams, D. Wright, and D.Lee, are better?”

    That W’s smallball lineup has 3 of the best skilled 3 point shooters in the NBA game today in Stephen Curry, Reggie Williams, and Dorell Wright (percentages over 40%) – and I thought the W’s would actually MISS Morrow’s shooting – they even got better shooting talent now! And Monta is a very skilled shooter (with an improving 3 pt. shot) and for a CENTER, David Lee is a nice mid-range shooter, passer, and rebounder in smallball. Nellie would FOAM AT THE MOUTH with the W’s small ball talent here! Even Al Thornton could play smallball Center.

    Udoh also would play center – and with his defense and shot blocking and the fact that he has a better than a 60 percent chance of canning his free-throws – the W’s play better when Udoh’s on the floor.

    The thought of bringing back T. Murphy didn’t bother me – as his contract is expiring.

    It’s that Lacob EVEN CONSIDERED bringing in ANTWAN JAMISON!!! Jamison? Who has at least another season or two on his ridiculous contract??? Only if the W’s were to receive 2 LOTTERY UNPROTECTED FIRST ROUNDERS from Cleveland would I take back Jamison and his ridiculous albatross contract!!!

  22. Pingback: Joe Lacob and the Hidden Meaning of the Warriors Bench - Feltbot's Warriors Blog

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