Howling Wind: Thunder 120 Warriors 109

I’m not going to recap this Thunder game. Going to save my bullets. I would just be howling in the wind (and mixing my metaphors), because no one in the world believes this Warriors team should be able to beat the Thunder.

Except me.

I think the Warriors lost this game for four reasons:

1) They have a GM who doesn’t believe in spread fours, and you need a spread four to beat this team.

2) They have a GM and a coach who don’t understand that David Lee is a great running center, and are not willing to use him to destroy players like Kendrick Perkins.

3) They have a coach who is unwilling to craft a targeted defensive game plan. Like Keith Smart double and triple teaming Russell Westbrook to keep him from driving, and force him to do what he hates: pass. Not to mention to keep Curry out of foul trouble.

Or Don Nelson pushing Kevin Durant RIGHT, into traps, instead of letting him go left at will. (I know, those tapes have been burned.)

4) They have a coach who doesn’t understand matchups and rotations. Like maybe there is no reason to play Biedrins against Kendrick Perkins.  Like maybe Jeremy Tyler should only get his developmental minutes against big frontline centers, and never against lineups that the Warriors should be running off the court with small ball. Like maybe Dom McGuire (6-9, 235) is the Warriors best player against Serge Ibaka (6-10, 235).

Like maybe it is a mistake to have both Ellis and Curry off the court at the same time in the fourth quarter. And Nate Robinson and rookies on it.

Small things like that.

Mark Jackson threw his players under the bus again in his post-game comments.  I’m starting to wonder how long they are going to take that from a guy who is so profoundly out of his depth as a head coach.

And I’m wondering if they’re wondering what I’m wondering right now…

Did Mark Jackson try to win this game?

91 Responses to Howling Wind: Thunder 120 Warriors 109

  1. Mr. Lacob is extremely happy with coach Jackson especially his demeanor, and how Jackson faithfully execute plays designed by Mr. Lacob.

  2. Did Mark Jackson try to win this game?

    We will know for sure if Tyler keeps playing crunchtime and Biedrins keeps starting. Tough to win with lineups like that.

    I was really excited with a Curry/Klay/Rush/Udoh/Lee lineup that came together middle of the 2nd quarter and was even more excited when DWright came in for Udoh. That lineup puts 4 of the best distance shooters in the league with Lee free to operate in the middle.

    Pity it only lasted about 5 seconds until Steph commited ANOTHER stupid touch foul and got dragged to the bench. I think that lineup has serious promise.

  3. For fantasy basketball players:

    If Chris Kaman is a free agent in your league, pick him up now. He is going to be traded ASAP.

    Would Joe Lacob be interested in a 7 footer that can’t run? Probably not.

    He can shoot.

  4. Here’s my very short and to-the-point analysis of tonight’s game and why the Warriors lost: GSW was outworked, outmuscled and outhustled.

    Yes, there were other peripheral issues, but the three-O’s cuts through all the other bs “ifs and buts” to the only bottom line that rings true. OKC plays hard from start to finish, with an unmistakeable physicality that the Warriors were, for whatever reason(s), incapable of matching.

    Nate Robinson intimated the other day that the Warriors were “soft”, that they needed to play and get tougher if they wanted to be a winning team on a consistent basis. I give you Exhibit A.

  5. Funny, I thought Jack should have played the second sting more in the fourth qtr. No love for Klay Thompson? He looked terrific last night. I agree with Berko above re our best lineup.

    This Monta is looking like the pouting version we saw after he didn’t make the all-star team last year. He’s got some issues I’m afraid.

    OKC is just a better team and they came to play last night. Since Durant is so much better than Wright and Ibaka is so much better than Lee/Biedrins/Udoh, the only chance we had to win was for Curry to outplay Westbrook and Ellis to outplay Hardin. Neither did. Curry is still not nearly 100 percent and Ellis is in some weird pouting funk. You can’t blame Jackson for that.

    Smart’s game plan. Seriously or was that a joke?

  6. Thanks Feltbot!

    OKC – with that sloppy ball-handling – can be beat, but the starters (minus Perkins plus Harden) are young, athletic, skilled, and talented.

    Only the W’s were just as guilty turning over the ball.

    THIS W’s team sure doesn’t execute the fast break very well at all. Only Ellis/Lee. Rush should never be given the ball to handle – it’s a turnover waiting to happen – and he can barely finish at the rim. At least there was a Dorell Wright sighting this game – he’s back!!!

    David Lee can run Perkins off the court – but OKC is BETTER with Perkins off the court because Serge Ibaka can run and jump like the wind.

    Andris Biedrins really has packed it in… It is what it is. Curry’s feed of Andris was pretty weak (on both players part)… What point guard feeds a center who doesn’t have a post game a ball in the post – twice. Andris wants/needs someone to create for him – draw the double team, and dish to him for an easy dunk. That’s it. That’s his game. Andris needs to run the court and be fed dunks – only then and only then will he think he’s a part of this team – as he thinks everyone’s selfish on this team looking for their own shot only.

  7. Great analysis, per usual, FB. Still I kind of enjoyed the game because when it was apparent Ellis and Curry were off, I didn’t think they had a chance and was waiting for a blowout. Instead they scrapped and stayed close. A lot can be attributed to their gross mistakes–Rush’s bloopers in particular. But I don’t make anything of that other than they haven’t played together that much and built confidence with wins. And when Tyler hit two jumpers plus drove once or twice, I was ecstatic!

    Biedrins, I suspect, is on a very short leash. I guess he has to be tried out because he is such a large investment, probably can’t be traded, and might yet offer advantages of height, though that is becoming more and more questionable.

    Ellis, I’m sure, is adjusting to a new game plan, awkwardly and tentatively at first, but as always with resolve. There have been dividends here already.

  8. 15 minutes for Tyler, but just 6 for McGuire. Tyler (or anyone!) over Biedrins makes a kind of sense, but not taking advantage of McGuire’s defense and rebounding seems silly when the team needed help in both areas last night. Maybe Jackson feels that with Udoh on the floor he needs more offensive firepower from everywhere else, so he has to play Rush over McGuire, especially since his starting guards were having problems.

    Thompson really brought it up another level last night. It’s always an open question whether a college hero can adapt to the NBA, but Klay does seem to be. Maybe West was right about him.

    When Curry has an off game no one tries to psychoanalyze him but when Monta does people assume he’s pouting. Monta’s results last night almost certainly had more to do with game conditions than with his attitude. Since Curry was ineffective and off the floor for much of the game, stopping Monta was the Thunder’s clear defensive focus. No big surprise there. Any player can be given problems if the opponent can put enough into it. We got an awful lot of open 3-pointers from Rush, Thompson and Wright last night because 2-3 of the Thunder were clumped around Monta.

    I wonder if the Warriors will make a grab for Kaman. Big and slow, can fill the lane, if you squint hard enough you can kinda see a Kwame there. Good shooting range though, so if he’s used right he could actually help open up the floor, not just clog it. In other words, it’s possible that the FO could mistakenly bring him in as another BigBall Beast but eventually figure out how to use him best. Given Kaman’s salary, it’s not likely that the team will make a play for him. Even if they did, the season would be over before they figured out how to use him. He’s no quick fix. But it’s a fun thought.

    “Mark Jackson threw his players under the bus again in his post-game comments. I’m starting to wonder how long they are going to take that…” Yeah, that doesn’t go over too well, with anyone anywhere. Nelson was always blunt in post-games, but he neverplayed the “it’s their fault, didn’t try hard enough” card, and Jackson has done it a few times now. That creates a “me vs. them” dynamic that is never constructive. After a loss, Nelson always said “we,” as in “We stank.” Sometimes he even took the blame personally, something Jackson has yet to do. But then, Nelson didn’t have to prove he belonged in the coach’s chair.

    @ #5, OT, the bottom line is that Smart’s team did better against the Thunder last year than Jackson’s team did last night. And Jackson has a better bench than Smart did. So just maybe that’s an indication of where Jackson measures on the ol’ coach-o-meter.

    The team’s poor results may not be Jackson’s fault. Maybe Lacob has to initial every game strategy, or whatever. But bashing your players in the press is destructive, and “try harder” isn’t a game plan. At the very least, Jackson’s gotta clean up his act.

  9. Feltbot

    OKC was clearly superior in both talent, and energy. Westbrook pushed the ball and many times he was never met with defense. Durant is better than just making him go right. Some Warriors even played well. Was it all X’s and O’s? Are you saying Biedrins should have played more? He is not as good as he was last year why play him more? Why not develop Tyler and/or Udoh?

    If as you say MJack is in over his head, and the Warriors are projected to win say 26 and end up with an admittedly mediocre 26-40 record, does Lacob fire a clearly in over his head coach, or does he keep him for another year?

    If at the end of the season, the team finishes with the 9th worse record and gets no 2012 draft pick (shipped to Utah)? I am curious about your thoughts on how this will play out? How does Lacob save face? What do his yes men do to save face? Or does he keep MJack for another year with a similar roster?

    • Lacob will have unshakeable faith in Coach Jackson until he doesn’t. At that time Jackson will be promoted. He’ll get a fancy title and the keys to the exec lunchroom, then be quietly sent home. Happens all the time.

    • No, it was not all X’s and O’s. But when you get those wrong, both your players and your team will look a lot worse than they should.

      This team gave OKC a much tougher time last year, with a worse bench. I think it’s worth examining why.

  10. I just checked the box scores on the OKC games last year. Curry/Ellis had good/very good games; Durant still scored in both. Could have been worse last night.

  11. Okc’s got the best record in the League this year I believe. Yes they have improved significantly over last year. Although we have a better bench, Curry’s ankle injury really inhibits our play right now. Curry can’t handle Westbrook right now whereas when he’s healthy I think he’s a little better than Westbrook. That has nothing to do with Jackson.

  12. Oh and Smart was an awful coach. Whether Jackson ends up developing into a good MnBA coach or not, he’ll be better than Smart just because he understands the game much better.

  13. The Houston Rockets are 12-8, 9-1 in their last 10. Do you think it might have something to do with their man in the middle, Sam Dalembert? 9 pts 9rbs 2.2 blocks in 25 minutes.

    You know, the legitimate NBA defensive center that Joe Lacob passed over in favor of Kwame Brown, because he wanted a 2 year deal?

    Dalembert signed for $7 million first year, $6.7 the next, with a $1.5 million buyout.

    It is simply amazing to me that no one in the Warriors media has thought to confront Lacob over this. They are asleep at the wheel.

    • Agree Totally. Dalembert was worth it, and its why the Rockets have been better and passed the Warriors up again, as they go through a rebuild process. — Their management is simply willing to take chances.
      Equal or less talent at all positions than the Warriors except for the free agent center the Dubs never attempted to go after. Warrior reporters to afraid to confront management. No more interviews for you!

  14. I’ve been to every home game but two this year and sitting pretty close and here is my fundamental observation.

    I’m not sure that a starting five of Ellis, Curry, Wright, Lee and Biedrins would remotely be a lock to beat our second five of Robinson, Thompson, Rush, Udoh and Tyler. IMHO, the Warriors have a ridiculously deep team, but pretty level, top to bottom. Heck, I didn’t even mention Jenkins and McGuire there, but from what i have seen, both of them can also play at this level and we would not drop off with them.

    The reality is that other than relative contract sizes, there is no reason that the starters should be getting 35 plus minutes per game on this team. We should be going 10-12 deep at 20-28 minutes a head, pressing, trapping, causing chaos. And yeah, i’m agreeing with Felt – running.

    This past week in the games against Memphis and Portland, the starters (other than Biedrins who doesn;t even count) ate up virtually all the minutes in the second half. Against memphis, the bench outscored the starters by a couple in the first half then didn;t see any time in the third quarter at all and then just a couple minutes of the 4th, whereupon Jax yanked them all and watched curry and ellis lose a game. Against portland, Lee, Ellis and Curry played 70 out of 72 possible minutes in the second half – only Curry got a 2 minute blow. yeah, he was lights out, but still. Frankly, Curry gets tired – as does Lee – and does stupid stuff at the end of games.

    The good thing about this depth is that there is virtually no permutation of three players – and heck, I will almost include Lee, Curry and Ellis in that – that i wouldn’t trade for a serious stud. The ONE guy i would not trade right now is Tyler – he may be viewed as the steal of the draft in a couple years. Remember, body and emotion wise, he’s middle of his sophomore year in college right now.

    If jax ran a 10 or even 12 man rotation and shot to get everybody between 18-30 minutes, i think this team could cause some damage. Plus, we’d show off more trade bait regularly

    • not to contest your conclusions at all, but we probably won’t see anything more than minor changes until around the trade deadline. perhaps we need to ask why the second unit is more successful. they appear to play more cohesively, with positive chemistry — if Robinson and Rush are going on a 2 on 1 break, it’s usually money, when Ellis takes the ball on a break (he’s better on the wing) the results are random. the second unit’s players know their roles on offense ; with the starters look like they’re negotiating during some of their possessions, with turnovers predictably following. on defense the difference is greater, simply because the second unit has both a perimeter and interior defender, vs. the starters’ ø perimeter, .5 interior.

    • carb1,

      It’s just hard to form any conclusions about the first unit. Curry has been out most of the season so far and still isn’t up to speed. But also the first unit is often stuck with Biedrins, who’s clogging the offense when in and not helping out.

      • I largely agree that Curry is still playing his way into shape and we need to see where that goes. However, the conclusion I come to around the core three – Ellis, Lee and Curry are as follows

        1) Each of them has some fundamental flaws around some very substantial skills (however, how complementary those skills are is questionable).

        2) For all three, a fundamental flaw is defense overall. None of them can lockdown anybody – having all three on the floor on the floor means that at least one player on the other side – a 1, 2 or 4 has a mismatch. Maybe more.

        3) For lee, it’s his inability to be an adequate rebounder in key situations. Whether its not boxing out or a sheer athleticism deficit, down the stretch, opponents rarely seem to be held to one shot if they miss. I tend to think Lee gets a bit gassed at the end of the second half as well

        4) For Curry, its some real fundamental sloppiness with the ball and – to be frank – he’s a bit below par overall as an NBA athlete. That comes out in fourth quarter when other team presses him.

        5) For Ellis, it’s mainly brain freeze shot selection and a deep overconfidence in his own one-on-one ability – though to be fair, i see him growing a fair bit in that area this year.

        The overall point is, pull any of those guys out and put in Rush, Thompson, Robinson, Udoh, etc. – I’m rarely thinking that we just dropped a whole lot of capability. I may have lost Monta’s slashing or Lee’s fairly effective scoring or Curry’s three, but I’ve upgraded some other need (generally on the defensive end)

        If Jackson can learn to coach situationally with all these pieces, they still could be a good team. A couple bounces here and there – Indiana, Memphis, Utah to name three – and they are .500. But as i watch Jackson just run his starters – who all have fundamental limitations in the first place – into the ground during 2nd half death marches, I just shake my head

  15. Jackson doesn’t have a clue. As he thinks the the Warriors lost the game because they showed no “motor” in the fourth quarter. In fact, he took the Warriors out of the game in the fourth quarter.

    The Thunder coach seeng that Lee was playing center pounded the offensive boards and garnered 9 of their 19 offensive rebounds in the fourth quarter. Game over. That never would have happened with Udoh on the court.

    Jackson refused to play Udoh in the fourth quarter, Admittedly, Udoh had a bad game in his 20 minutes of play, but it should be noted that Thunder only went up 3 points during he period of play.

    The Thunder coach kept the player that Udoh was guarding away for the hoop in order to render him a non-factor. Jackson misplayed Udoh defensively as he took the bait and had Udoh playing above the foul line or out on the wings, thus preventing him from providing any help defense which he shines at. Nelson would have have had Udoh guarding the rim at all times.

    It’s ridiculous that Thompson who played extremely well last night as he went 6 for 8 from the field, while both Curry and Ellis were took twice as many shots and shot less well below 50% from the field. And even though Rush was 2-5, he should been shooting more. Also, he should be prohibited from leading a fastbreak, and attempting to dunk at the hoop.

  16. feltbot, I must admit, I was very surprised the Warriors did not pursue Dalembert when our first two choices fell through last fall.

    • I just got confirmation from Marcus Thompson (@gswscribe) that the reason was because Dalembert wanted a 2 year deal.

      Anyone who can’t see that Joe Lacob is tanking until he gets his “big deal” has blinders on.

      • “Tanking” is perhaps not the term Lacob uses to describe it. He’s “keeping his eye on the prize.”

  17. Two comments that jump out at me from the astute participants in the Felty blog:

    #6 –“Andris Biedrins really has packed it in.”

    #17 — “For Curry, its some real fundamental sloppiness with the ball and – to be frank – he’s a bit below par overall as an NBA athlete.”

    We clearly need a center, but let’s focus on point guard for a minute, because it’s becoming painfully clear that Curry is not the answer at that position. Curry has had plenty of time to show what he can do — and he’s only proven that he’s never going to be the next Steve Nash. It’s more likely he’ll be the next Steve Novak, only shorter. Great shooter for spot situations.

    Not that long ago, I was against the rumored trade of Curry for Chris Paul. Now I wish the Warriors had gotten rid of Curry. He’s soft, his shot is too erratic and some of his airhead passes would embarrass a high-schooler. He has a career assist-turnover ratio of 1.9, and it’s actually deteriorated since his rookie year. Yes, he’s been injured. But when hasn’t he been injured?

    I’d like to see the Warriors trade Curry for a strong two guard — someone like Wesley Matthews, 6-5, 220 — and move Monta to the point. Monta has shown a steady improvement in his ability to distribute the ball, and he has the quickness to keep up with the many quick PGs in the league. Overall, we’d be better at the 1 and 2.

    None of this addresses the center problem, but it would be a lot more doable to find a good two guard. This team as built is going nowhere, and something has to happen to shake things up. Curry’s immature style of play infects the entire team. Getting rid of it would make the team better.

    • “We clearly need a center, but let’s focus on point guard for a minute, because it’s becoming painfully clear that Curry is not the answer at that position. Curry has had plenty of time to show what he can do — and he’s only proven that he’s never going to be the next Steve Nash. It’s more likely he’ll be the next Steve Novak, only shorter. Great shooter for spot situations.”

      MWLX, actually I don’t believe that “Curry has had plenty of time to show what he can do”. My suggestion the other day that trading Curry might be the wise move stemmed only from my extreme reservations concerning his long term health, or more specifically, his heretofore weak ankles.

      I, like yourself, have questioned his toughness, but mostly from a pain tolerance perspective. And I’ll be the first to admit that the fairness of that mindset is highly debatable. I have no doubts about the kid’s toughness when he’s playing.

      As for his play since being drafted, I think it’s easy to lose track of what’s taken place with Curry specifically given everything else that’s been going on with the Warriors over that same period (ownership and coaching changes, trades, free agent signings, the lockout, etc).

      In Curry’s rookie season he was coached by Nelli, and guess what, he flourished to the point where even though his minutes were limited until later in the season I felt he should have won the ROY award. Was there any doubt that Nelli was right about Curry’s future by the end of his rookie year? But then…….

      His second year is wasted at the hands of Keith Smart, who totally mishandles and mismanages Curry, not to mention the Warriors, as well. Which brings us to the current situation……

      Another new coach, and another new system. And this time the total emphasis is on defense from day 1 of training camp, with the offensive side of the ball a distant second thought. Add in his missed time due to those ankles and the question that really needs answering is have we seen the REAL Steph Curry since Don Nelson left? My answer to that is an emphatic no.

      Again, my only worry with Curry lies here. http://www.csnbayarea.com/blog/warriors-talk/post/Curry-says-ankle-doesnt-respond-well-aft?blockID=641388&feedID=2799

      Tell me that those issues are behind him and I’m not trading Curry. He’s too young, smart and talented at a position that is vital for a championship caliber team. Nelli wasn’t wrong about Curry, he just needs a good coach, a better supporting cast and some healthy wheels to prove it.

      • Steve Nash didn’t play under ideal circumstances in his first three years, yet his assist to TO ratio averaged about 2.5, and improved steadily, while Curry’s has remained under 2.0. And many of his TOs are real forehead-knockers, which shows he doesn’t have the discipline to be a consistent passer.

        But I fundamentally disagree with your view that Curry needs “a better supporting cast.” It’s the other way around, Steve. The team needs a better point guard. Too many possessions are stifled by Curry’s inability to distribute effectively or by his loose passing. When your PG does this, it derails the entire offense, which has looked out of kilter whenever he’s been at the helm. Even Nate Robinson has been better. His ratio of 2.95 is ninth best in the league.

        Curry has played in 163 games. Experiment over. Get something for him before the rest of the league realizes he’s just a better version of Steve Novak or Kyle Korver.

  18. “While Dalembert should not be a starter in the NBA, he is the kind of defensive presence off the bench that can hold down the low post for stretches.

    A team with a big center that is looking for a way to get their man more rest may look to Dalembert as a bench solution.

    While sitting on the bench may make Dalembert happy, signing with a losing team as a starting center will get him more money. I still think he stays in Sacramento, but every team develops needs so anything can happen.”

    This was one scouting report on Dalembert before he eventually chose to sign with Houston. If the Warriors looked at Dalembert in the same light why would, or should, they have been interested in signing this guy to a multiple year deal, especially considering the money he was asking for his services? Throw in the fact he wanted to play for a “winning team” and accordingly had narrowed his choices to the Knicks, Heat, and Rockets, made any association with the Warriors even more unlikely.

    Right or wrong, GSW decided that Chandler and Jordan were the two centers worthy of pursuit (and big dollars), and once those options were no longer possible any other deal for a big man in the middle was going to be of the short term variety, given the remaining names available.

    Considering all the circumstances involved in a season that will ultimately be known more for it’s asterisks than anything that happens on the hardwood, it’s hard for me to argue their logic as it pertained to Dalembert, and even moreso given their “tanking strategy”. LOL

  19. Rick Carlisle describing Popovich after Mavs-Spurs Sunday night:

    “I think he’s the greatest coach ever in this game. All their guys function in their system at a high level. Gary Neal isn’t a point guard. But he was in there making point-guard type plays and hitting shots. We were making a few mistakes on them but they were executing like crazy and it’s a great example of what playing the right way is about. I’ve seen Pop do this time and time again.”

  20. I think Curry’s ankle will be fine given time to adequately rest and strengthen it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like this season’s schedule will permit it. Curry has no history of ankle problems until last year when he simply should have given it proper rest instead of coming back too soon. Right now he’s playing with his ankle braced so tight that he’s at @ 75%. And somehow he still was able to score 32 points with 7 rebounds and 5 assists against the Blazers.

    Let Curry properly rest and rehap the ankle and he’ll be a top 5 pg in the League. It would be moronic to trade the guy and they won’t.

  21. If you want to see some spectacular basketball, catch a replay of Monday night’s Clippers vs. Thunder game. Awesome athleticism, great PG play by Chris Paul, monster dunks and none more spectacular than Blake Griffin’s posterization of Kendrick Perkins at 8:32 of the 3rd quarter. There’s been nothing like it since Baron posterized Kirilenko. NBA-TV showed the Clipper feed, and typically replays their games.

    If you miss it, just catch ESPN highlights. Their coverage is already over the top, as usual, wondering if it was the best dunk of all time. Well, actually, in this case it might not be over the top, because posterizing a beast like Perkins is about as spectacular as it gets.

    • didn’t really see much in that dunk, besides Perkins arriving too late to deliver the hard foul which was the only way to prevent a score. dunks by smaller players like Davis have narrower margins for perfection.

      • Perkins’ late arrival, and Griffin’s hammer slam for a score in spite of Perkins’ hard foul in a vain attempt to prevent a score are exactly why it was so spectacular. Twisted logic much?

        • not twisted, sorry. if Perkins had position to more strongly contest the dunk, the degree of difficulty would be higher ; as it was, conditions strongly favoured Griffin, and the big bodies involved doesn’t suffice to make it special for me. not saying you shouldn’t be thrilled by it if it suits you better.

          • Chris Mullin, during telecast of Feb. 1 Clips-Jazz game:

            “It’s the best dunk I’ve ever seen in my life… in competition, no doubt about it. To me, that’s the best of all time.”

  22. feltmeister, the tribute piece for Smart in sfgate to celebrate tonight’s return to oaktown confirms Lacob’s animus against Nelson — he sounds almost boastful when explaining how he needed to purge the ‘remnants’ of the Nelson hoops philosophy. there’s a permanent black mark against him in my book for never meeting with Nelson in person to give him the pink slip and settle up.

  23. Don Nelson has forgotten more basketball than Joe Lacob will ever know.

    • Wrong, Mr. Lacob is the smartest man in NBA with the highest Basketball IQ. Don’t believe me? West, Riley, Kirk, Jackson etc all praised Mr. Lacob as the smartest.

  24. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/30/SPEL1N0JNM.DTL

    In the end, Smart was a Nelson disciple and therefore was let go.

    Smart “represented a continuation of the Don Nelson era,” Lacob said. “He was trained by Don Nelson for seven years. It wasn’t the mind-set of what we wanted to do.

    “I hate to say this, but the owner matters. … Our plan, our mind-set was not Don Nelson kind of basketball. We wanted to start with our own people and build it from scratch. We didn’t want any remnants.”

    • I feel like a fool for stating the obvious, what you painfully analyzed so well last year, FB, but it is beyond me how Smart was a Nelson disciple. He didn’t follow many of Nelson’s ideas at all. The only thing Lacob can mean is that Smart, like Nelson, “didn’t care about defense,” or defense the way Lacob sees it, and of course Lacob had no conception of what Nelson defense really was. That neither had a full competent roster to do much is somehow beside the point.

      No wonder our coaches have been antsy in post-game interviews, no wonder players have been racking up fouls.

      It’s quite possible Smart was in a strait jacket start to finish and had to go to great pains to show he wasn’t a Nelson. And that Jackson is wearing one as well.

      I’ve sometimes wondered if you’ve gone overboard in your speculations, but Lacob’s statement is full confirmation. And it doesn’t bode well at all for the Warriors. It looks like Lacob will call this season a wash as well, not do anything to develop potential, and we’ll have another year, or two or three, of starting over.

      Do prospective coaches have to fill our questionnaires and sign an anti-Nelson oath the way we once had to sign loyalty oaths?

      Sample questions:

      1. In five thousand words or more, how bad a coach was Nelson?

      2. Which is more important in basketball?

      a. Defense
      b. Offense
      c. The owner’s wishes
      d. a & c

      (there will be no fifth option e, a&b combined, coordinated by the person most knowledgable and closest to the floor and players)

      Etc.

      • he’s barely had a year in the director/producer’s chair, and Lacob is spinning revisionist history. if Smart had made the post season and satisfied the supposed condition for the second year on his contract, the official version would probably go on about how much Smart went his own way and burned the bridges with Nelson’s methods.

        Sac plays the role of the even more dysfunctional sibling for the woeyrs, and even with Cousins whom some fans around here coveted madly, they suffer rebounding deficiencies as bad as their western neighbor. Thornton, who’s thrived against the oaktown guards/wings, won’t be playing.

        • “Revisionist history”–nicely put. But no worries here. Guber will tell us how exciting and entertaining the team is anyway.

      • Let me see, I wonder if either of Nellie’s two disciples had been in Smart’s place would Lacob have treated them like remnants?
        That would be Greg Popovich and George Karl…Hmm. Pretty good asssistants in their own right.

      • Lacob should stick to making sure people don’t get sick from the food at Oracle, and fans can get in and out of the parking lot. That is more his speed. To pressure the coaches into his philosophy especially with this roster, shows an arrogant attitude that will take two or three, or four years before he or Kirk figures out they wont make the playoffs. Oh well.

      • “straight jacket” above–sorry, guys

    • “We didn’t want any remnants.”

      Well, Joe, what about those players, huh? We’ve had the same starters, playing 4-on-5 basketball, for the last 3 years.

  25. Beans may very well play decently tonight, but honestly, how much longer are we going to be asked to swallow this nonsense?

    http://www.csnbayarea.com/blog/warriors-talk/post/Jackson-excited-about-Biedrins-vs-Kings?blockID=642008&feedID=5882

  26. Sorry if I missed a reference to it here, but Kawakami had an interesting analysis of this year’s dubs vs. last year’s.

    http://blogs.mercurynews.com/kawakami/2012/01/29/warriors-at-6-12-how-theyre-different-how-theyre-exactly-the-same/

  27. I know it’s perverse on my part, FB, but I’m looking forward to your next post, comments on today’s events and tonight’s game.

  28. Can’t recap the Kings game. rgg, what’s your take?

    • Actually, I want someone to tell me, but I’m sure you’ll pick it up later. Aside from the obvious attempt to get Biedrins going (last ditch?) in the 1st. qtr., which only stalled getting the offense in rhythm, there is weirdness I do not understand. I especially wonder what’s going on with Ellis and Curry. Curry may still be hurting. I don’t ever recall seeing Ellis with so many off nights, and unless something is wrong, I’m not going to question his ability or desire. I’m wondering what the plan is now and later, what has been said in practice, and after Lacob’s message yesterday, what mandate has been passed down. The guys don’t look right on the floor, and I sense confusion and faltering resolve.

      I’m curious why there’s such a strict first team/second team separation, why instead all the players aren’t mixed more to put the most effective unit of the floor. Having the first unit play with Biedrins especially hobbles them.

      I didn’t mind leaving the second unit in most of the 4th. qtr., although it nearly backfired at the end. Those guys need to develop and the team has to spell itself for this absurd schedule.

  29. A win’s a win but that was flat out butt-ugly.

    http://www.ibabuzz.com/warriors/2012/01/31/the-dub-stitutes-carry-the-warriors-to-93-90-win-over-sacramento/#more-2969

    He only made a couple of shots tonight but Klay Thompson has won me over already after getting off to a slow start this season. This kid is gonna be good.

  30. Last night’s “highlight of the night” was obviously Blake Griffin’s throw down over Perkins. Well, that proved to be nothing compared to tonight’s “highlight of the night” from The Oracle!

    • Thanks Steve!
      Times are rough in Warriorland when the owner jumps out of his seat and smacks a hi-five over a made free-throw!!! It was a thing of beauty though, especially how it tricked off the rim. If ever one actually swishes, Lacob may need to wear pampers!

      • PeteyB, LOL. Actually, Lacob’s show of enthusiasm was from a play later in that game. A bit of clever editing from the uploader. That said, I’m sure he was doing a little internal high-fiving to himself when the Latvian sharpshooter canned that freebie. :)

  31. OT: I never thought much about our local TV weather forecasters……until now. Generally speaking, SoCal sucks, but their long range weather forecasts ain’t too shabby.

    http://www.pubclub.com/losangeles/weathergirls.htm

  32. Jackson and Udoh after Wednesday practice.

  33. Marc J. Spears: Just acquired LA D-Fenders point guard Ish Smith is expected to be called up by the Orlando Magic on Thursday, source tells Y! Sports. Twitter

    Ever notice how Magic GM Otis “My Main Man” Smith seems to have this “thing” for GSW players, both current and former? He tried to get CJ Watson but the Warriors matched, J-Rich there now, then there was Pietrus, Barnes etc with the latest now being Ish Smith.

    Everything considered I’d say a perfect blueprint for unspectacular results, which just might be why that dude Howard wants out, ya think? Otis, time to re-think your strategy! LOL

  34. TV dilemma tonight:

    My cable box will record two programs at a time, but there are three games: Warriors vs. Utah; Cal Bears vs. Arizona; Clippers vs. Denver.

    Can’t miss Cal because it’s such a treat to watch Jorge Guitterez, and the Bears are playing for the Pac-12 title. Have watched the last two Clips games and they’ve been hugely entertaining. Their game against Denver should be a blast. Lately, it’s been utterly painful watching the Warriors.

    And the choice is: Skip the Ws. Record the Cal and the Clips games. First time I’ve willingly missed a Ws game in years, but I have a feeling it’s the start of a trend. The Clips are putting on an incredible basketball show on many levels (not just the “blunks”), and the Ws are sputtering in so many ways that I can’t deal with it right now. Life is too short to invest time in watching continuing mediocrity, especially when exemplified by the dazed and confused efforts of our supposedly top-notch backcourt.

    • Unfortunately, I can’t disagree. I’m having a lot more fun watching the TWolves this season.

    • +2

      • While I still think a lot of some of these players, I hate what Lacob is doing with the team. Those who like it can enjoy it. I don’t.

        I still, however, greatly enjoy this blog.
        …my last connection to the team.

  35. Hey Feltbot – we have to jump on Lacob for his confession that Smart had to be purged because of his history with Nellie. I was already shocked that Lacob would put all the time and effort into buying the W’s and then not have a plan to put a new coach in place. So with this admission he already knew Smart was not going to be the coach yet he spends a whole wasted year. He should have had his coach all picked out and since he did not – last year was a total waste…

  36. Felty: I think it’s time that you should consider whether Ellis should be replaced by Rush in the starting line-up, and for Ellis to come off the bench. I think such move would result in Curry and Rush shooting and scoring more, and Ellis being more effective. I also think the Warriors defense would improve.

    I also believe that a frontcourt of Udoh, McQuire, and either D.Lee or D. Wright is our best frontcourt. Your view?

    Lacob removed some great Nellie “remnants.” No longer do the Warriors score off of opponents made baskets as Sac did the other night. Nor do the Warriors have the ability to score under the their own basket on out-of-bounds plays.

    • That’s right! Smart got the dubs a lot of close inbounds shots last year! This year we give them up.

  37. Feltbot @ 46:

    Maybe you can start a new feature on nights like this, The Best of Feltbot, calling up posts from years past. I remember several spirited reviews of exciting games.

  38. MJ shootaround interview 2-2-12

  39. Warriors Super Bowl predictions.

  40. Utah pregame with MJ.

  41. Warriors put up 71 second half points to blitz the Jazz. Curry and Ellis were great and DLee was kind of the catalyst for the second half runaway after struggling big time in the first 24 minutes.

    http://www.ibabuzz.com/warriors/2012/02/02/monta-ellis-stephen-curry-david-lee-combine-for-85-points-as-warriors-blow-past-utah/#more-2979

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