I See Dead Centers: Sixers 104 Warriors 97

What do the Philadelphia 76ers have in common with the Golden State Warriors?

Both of them have over $13 million in dead center stinking up their benches. Both of them have GMs who were suckered like amateurs into giving away valuable trade assets for corpses.   

Fortunately for the Sixers, they have the option to call in the undertaker this offseason. Bynum’s contract is up. The Warriors’ amateur GM, Joe Lacob, by contrast, committed to TWO YEARS of displaying Bogut’s corpse in state.

And not just Bogut’s corpse, of course, but also Richard Jefferson’s. That’s $23 million of corpse stinking up the Warriors bench. For TWO YEARS. (I mean no disrespect to Jefferson. I believe he can still play. But Joe Lacob quite clearly doesn’t want him to. Lacob has $300 new-fangled jerseys to sell, and tickets to sell on Authentic Fan Fridays, and a spanking new, good-looking lottery pick to sell them for him.)

And we shouldn’t forget the $9 million corpse of Andris Biedrins, whom Joe Lacob refused to amnesty, despite knowing that he contracted a chronic case of osteitis pubis back in 2009. Biedrins, by the way, sat out this game dealing with an “abdominal injury,” according to Rusty Simmons. Wink, wink. (Am I the only one who is amazed that the Warriors beat writers have conspired with Lacob to hush up the truth about Biedrins’ chronic “abdominal injury” for three years? It makes you wonder who signs their paychecks.)

OK, so let’s get out the abacus. That’s $22 million of dead center plus $10 million of dead small forward, equals $32 million of dead contracts on the Warriors roster, for TWO YEARS.

How much is Jarrett Jack asking for again?

The Sixers Game: Oh, was there a basketball game tonight? I’m sorry, I got distracted.

I don’t make a great deal out of this game. It might have looked like a win on the schedule to most, but never to me. This was the Warriors 4th game in five nights, and their fifth road game in a row. Even the Spurs play like this, in games like this, as we just saw in the Oracle. Even championship teams play like this, on the road, in meaningless playoff games.

You can pick apart this game as much as you like, and whine and moan about this turnover or that player or this substitution, but it’s all meaningless. This was a game that the exhausted Warriors didn’t need, and they played like they didn’t need it. 

I’m reminded of something Keith Smart once said. Perhaps the only thing he ever said that’s stuck with me.

“They played like a horse headed back to the barn.”

Remember that? He said it after a road loss in Philadelphia just like this one, on the last game of a brutal road trip. It’s stuck with me because I went to horse camp a couple of times growing up, and I’ve been on that horse.

What he meant to say, but couldn’t, was: Forget about it. 

The Playoff Picture: This loss leaves the Warriors still in 6th place, a mere half game ahead of Utah, one game ahead of Houston, and 3.5 ahead of the Lakers. Three of these four teams will make the playoffs.

Forget about Memphis and the 5 seed. The Warriors are not reeling in that great team. I believe they just won 8 straight, before losing a close game to the Heat in Miami. Rudy who?

I’m not at all worried about what the Warriors’ performance on this road trip did to their playoff chances. They were never meant to win these games, and don’t need them. As far as I’m concerned, they took care of business with those 3 straight wins coming into the trip. Now they’re headed home for the final stretch of the season, in which they’ll play 16 of their remaining 22 games at home.

Barring a complete collapse, that schedule should guarantee them a playoff spot in the radically weakened West. And they just caught a nice break at the trading deadline.  (Yes, I know Joe Lacob stripped their bench for the third straight season, but that’s not what I’m talking about.) Houston, which was clearly a better team than the Warriors before the deadline, may have just blown their team up. They are not the team they were before the trades, and I sincerely doubt that Thomas Robinson will help them this season, if ever. The wild card is Donatas Motiejunas, the sweet-shooting 7 footer (drafted 9 picks below Klay Thompson, if that kind of thing interests you), who has been installed at the spread four in place of Patrick Patterson. He doesn’t defend like Patterson did though.

Which is not to say I have no worries about the Warriors making the playoffs. There are two things right now that are actually worrying me quite a bit:

1) I’m worried that David Lee is banged up. I’m worried about his shoulder, that clearly bothered him tonight for the second straight game. And I’m worried about his abdomen, that I thought he might have tweaked in the Memphis game; and

2) I’m worried that the Andrew Bogut Myth might return.

100 Responses to I See Dead Centers: Sixers 104 Warriors 97

  1. The first Warriors media member I’ve seen who has analyzed the Warriors defense the right way, with points per possession.

    http://www.sbnation.com/nba/2013/3/3/4059200/golden-state-warriors-defense-mark-jackson-playoffs

    I wonder where he gets his stats, though. This site shows the Warriors having dropped to 21st in the league, albeit with a lower number: 1.031.

    http://www.teamrankings.com/nba/stat/defensive-efficiency

    • I suspect the claimed progress in defense this year and the decline and differences the chart maps are meaningless, when you factor in the weaker opponents played early, many from the east, and key players out in several.

      More important is the interpretation as to why defense has improved—and declined, which SB doesn’t give. The system that worked with weaker teams isn’t working with stronger now. Also key players have played heavy minutes all season and are showing the wear. But if defense improved, the reason is simple: the team added two capable players in Jack and Landry. The bench is stronger that it was last year. But not strong enough.

      I don’t think it makes sense to talk about the defense at all this year simply because of the thin roster. They are pushed into compromises where they have to give up something, in the lane or on the perimeter. Or they are forced into playing more defensive players with a tradeoff in scoring.

      The real reason defense is struggling is the myth of Lacob caring about defense.

      • The Ws success – It’s definitely part schedule and part zone.

        Early in the season, teams weren’t shooting 3s with such efficiency and were Eastern Conference-heavy. But I’m amazed at how teams now like Houston and the 76ers and a lot of teams recently (who are getting unlimited open looks from 3) – shoot the lights out on 3s against the Ws… Making the Ws pay for playing too much zone, not defending the perimeter, and packing the lane to cover for bad individual defenders inside.

        The Ws favorable home-away schedule should put them back on track – if Lee recuperates and Bogut gets healthy for the playoffs – I’ll be pleased.

  2. For the Monta haters: It’s worth noting the defense that Monta put on DeMar DeRozan in this game:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/boxscore?gid=2013030215

    Can’t play defense? That’s Harden and DeRozan he’s clearly bothered in two straight games. Two guys he shouldn’t even be forced to guard.

    It has always been a matter of the teams he’s had around him, and what they were playing for. The Bucks are headed to the playoffs, and they’re in crunch time. Watch what happens.

    • It’s all been said before… Your argument for Ellis’ defense of SGs is hurting… Like a desperation half-time heave.

      Why argue Ellis’ defense of SGs? He’s obviously handicapped by size. Out of position, sure. Ellis should guard PGs, where he’s a stopper (if and when he feels like it). A 2 guard? No.

      Monta needs to pair with a big PG, maybe one who doesn’t need the ball. How many big PGs in the league? Holliday? Jason Kidd? Jarrett Jack?

      And using for an example a Bucks home game playing a 23-win EASTERN conference bottom-dweller in Toronto?

      And Harden had a similar stat line against the GSWs recently. And you can’t convince me that Curry, Klay, and Jack consistently play great defense…

    • FeltbotsFakeGirlfriend

      Harden had 25 points and 7 assist against the Bucks. That is far from being shut down.

      • FFG:

        People who are knowledgeable about basketball (Feltbot) actually read the box score or in his case likely saw the game.

        Harden went 8 for 18 (below shooting average for he), and had 7 turnovers. I don’t think James Harden would say he had a great game in the Rockets Loss to the Bucks.

        • If Ellis opts out, Dallas might be a good fit – play alongside OJ Mayo – with Marion, Nowitzki… OJ Mayo can handle a bit, defend 2 guards, and or play off the ball and shoot the lights out. And if Cuban entices Dwight Howard who likes Monta’s game… That would be a Western contender. Or a Ellis/Rose backcourt in the East.

        • FeltbotsFakeGirlfriend

          If that was the case than how can Feltbot say that Steph Curry dominated Avery Bradley. Curry shot 6-22 against Boston. So on one hand you have a player go 6-22 and he was unstoppable. But you have a player go 8-18 and he was shut down. You are just as delusional as Feltbot if you think both statements are true. While we are at you ignore the fact the Monta Ellis shot 9-24 that is a whopping 37% FG. Harden was held to 44.4% FG. He is shooting 45.3% FG on the season. If Harden makes just 1 of the shots that he missed he would have shot 50% for the game. So because Harden missed 1 fucking shot you claim he was shut down by Monta Ellis. Does not get anymore ignorant than that folks.

  3. Before we turn the page on the road trip, let us remember how well Curry recovered from his dismal game in Minnesota, how four games, all winnable, of his all-star calibre performance were wasted.

    It’s official: the Bogut trade is a total bust. Even if recovery is possible, which is doubtful, he only has a month to get back in playing shape and learn how to play with the team, at which point the Warriors will have a low seed in the playoffs, if they even make it. But his value to the team then will be negligible, certainly compared to what they might have had all season, where they might have been in the standings, with more a sane roster moves.

    We’re going to have to find fresh ways to say what we’ve been saying all year, really since the trade. And then we’ll have to endure the hopes and planning centered on his return next year—and most likely go through the same.

    Cohan is starting to look good.

    But there’s hope:

    “You can always give more as an athlete. The day you think you can’t give more, you probably should retire,” said Bogut, who is sporting a sun tan from spending the All-Star break on the beaches of Mexico.

    http://blog.sfgate.com/warriors/2013/02/19/gs-warriors-bogut-gets-cleared-for-back-to-back-games-extended-minutes/

    • “Cohan is starting to look good”

      Really? You’ve forgotten what a crap owner Cohan and garbage front office Rowell ran…

      Golden State is still the 6th seed in the West with home games galore coming up. No Rush and Bogut almost the whole season. Two projected starters.

      What the heck were your pre-season Ws expectations? A Western Conference 3 seed? How much better a performance were you expecting?

      Guys here – projected 30-35 Ws wins pre-season… The Ws are now going to blow past those projections. Likely 45-50 wins.

      And this Ws ownership is worse than Cohan?

      No way!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • I’m almost serious. At the end of Cohan’s reign, the team had the core of a good team—Curry, Ellis, Lee—a draft prospect many liked—Udoh—and only one salary burden—Biedrins. How much has Lacob improved on that, and how much dead salary has he saddled the team with this year and next?

        I’m one of those who predicted 30-35 wins. Remind me why I said that at the end of the season.

      • Cohan’s “We Believe” looked pretty damn good compared to this show. And I dont believe he ever had a team tank. Finally, Cohan never fleeced taxpayers like the Lacobites are preparing to do in San Francisco.

        • My buddies are in the 30-35 pre-season club… So when I asked them how good a job ownership, front office, and coaches are doing? All average to below!!! Lol!

          I say – if one’s not bullish on the Ws? Fine. I’m not going to disagree – I predicted 42-50 wins based on how many games Curry/Bogut play. But I’m a homer and am generally usually high on the Ws most seasons – and always assuming all things hit!

          Ownership, Front Office, and Coaches – can’t ALL SUCK! Not at 45-50 likely wins. SOMEONE’S doing a decent job at SOMETHING! Lol!

          And our promising young core players Curry, Lee, Klay, Barnes, Ezeli, Green, Basemore, are all locked in long term at fair to great contracts.

          Playoffs? Yes. Past first round? No. But it’s good to be a Ws fan again!

  4. The Warriors need to play Ezeli 30-35 minutes per game. not 20 as he fid against Philly.

    When the Warriors were winning , the Warriors small line-up played better than when the Warriors played a big center.That has changed.In recent games the Warriors small line-up has been destroyed,The warriors. Against Philly, with Ezeli playing center. the team played well. Jackson chose to small in the fourth quarter and the Warriors lost.

    And the Warriors are going nowhere without
    Jefferson playing significant minutes.The Warriors need his defense.

    To bad Jenkins no longer on the Warriors.especially with Jack in a funk.

    Harkless update:5-7. the other night.5-6 tonight.

  5. The Warriors are going nowhere with Jackson as coach this year or any other year. He should befitted this summer. But it won’t happen. Lacob will simply say the Warriors problems this year was the result of losing both Rush and Bogut.Not.

  6. Marcus Thompson climbs on board my Bogut analysis:

    http://www.mercurynews.com/warriors/ci_22709947/golden-state-warriors-big-question-are-they-better

    He also reports on twitter that the Warriors “have gone dark on Bogut updates.”

  7. “Stan Van Gundy is quite the personality.

    SVG was a participant in two panels at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston this past weekend, a conference explaining and expanding the growing movement that is the use analytics in sports.

    Whether being brutally honest about the Dwight Howard situation in Orlando during the “It’s Not You, It’s Me: Break-Ups in Sports” panel or candidly admitting that he is the only member of the “Basketball Analytics” panel who is currently unemployed, SVG is a treat.

    On Saturday, SVG took some time out of his ridiculously busy schedule to talk (I was also joined by Frank Gomez of Bay Area Ball and The Bay Area Sports Report) about everything Golden State Warriors. Topics included the Warriors second half, Stephen Curry’s ceiling, whether Andrew Bogut can be a real difference maker for this team, David Lee’s defense (or lack thereof) and more. SVG, always known for being a great interview and better person, didn’t disappoint.”

    http://www.warriorsworld.net/2013/03/03/qa-with-stan-van-gundy/

    • I posted this earlier tonight on Fast Break:

      Steve says:
      March 4th, 2013 at 12:05 am

      In that Warriorsworld interview with Stan Van Gundy, SVG continually claims the Warriors are no longer playing defense the way they were earlier this season. I say he’s all wrong.

      I posted this earlier on this thread:

      “At home this season the Warriors have given up an average of 97.5 points per game. Compare that to their road figure of 104.4 points per game.

      The Warriors have held the opposition under 100 points (regulation minutes) in 19 of their 25 home games, including the Clippers twice, and the Spurs, Heat and Thunder one time each.”

      My point is that all season long the Warriors have been MUCH better defensively at home than on the road. Many look at the last few weeks (where they’ve played mostly away from the friendly confines) and think the Dubs D has suddenly regressed. No, not really.

      The road games have piled up at a ridiculous rate the last 2 months, bringing with it the inevitable decline in energy needed to play the more physical style of D that Jackson and his staff have implored the players to play since training camp. However, the times when the Warriors have been home and more energized from a combination of better rest and the always electric atmosphere of Oracle Arena, the Warriors defense has been very good.

      Here are the specific point totals allowed by the Warriors at home, since Jan 1; vs Clippers 94, Memphis 94, Portland 97, Miami 92, Clippers 99, OKC 99, Dallas 97, Suns 93, Houston 116, Suns 98, and the Spurs 101 (in 53 minutes of play). With the exception of the game vs the Rockets, the Warriors held every team they played at home over the past 2 months to under 100 points in regulation play. And we’re talking the Clippers twice, Memphis, Miami, OKC and San Antonio as part of that schedule.

      Perception and reality are often two different animals, and in the case of the Warriors and their perceived regression in defensive acumen/effort as the season has progressed, what this really is is the harsh reality of road hoops in the NBA taking it’s toll on a young and increasingly tired group of travelers.

      I’d be more than surprised if that gritty Warriors D doesn’t “suddenly” return on a regular basis over the next month and a half at The Oracle.

  8. Steve: Statistically you may be right that the Warriors have played better defense at home. But, my eyes tell me that the Warriors defense, as well as it’s defense, has played terrible during their losing streak.

    Regardless of the number of points scored by our opponents at home and on the road, it seems to me that our opponents FG% has consistently risen, and our FG% has dropped during our losing streak. I find that more significant than the number of points they give up at home as compared to on the road.

    LA has closed the gap on the Warriors. I doubt the Warriors are going to make the playoffs, especially with Jackson insisting on going small at crucial portions in the game, not playing Jefferson significant minutes, allowing Barnes to play as much as he does, Landry taking so few, and allowing Thompson to take so many shots when he is off. And Myers not making a trade to improve the frontline.

    The Warriors are favored by 6 tonight. Let’s see if they cover the spread.

  9. Steve: It seems to me that our opponents have garnered less offensive rebounds and committing more turnovers in Oakland, and thus had less scoring opportunities which resulted in less points scored at Oracle. If so, it was not the Warriors defense that is the cause for our opponents scoring less at Oracle.

  10. We haven’t heard from Peter Guber in a while. I just ran across his tweet to this link which he says give great advice on crafting the hero story for your brand:

    http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2013/03/brand-storytelling-content-marketing-heros-journey/

    Excerpt:

    “As a content marketer, you have probably heard the call for us all to become brand storytellers. While this sounds great in theory, the tricky part for many companies is determining how to develop these stories in the first place.”

    As for my reaction, I’ll let this famous Russian singer speak for me:

    • Perhaps the most disturbing video I’ve ever seen…

    • Sharp Dressed Hat

      “Truly remarkable.” – Anonymous Diplomat

      “Wonderfully demented. Add some spiders and it’s a winner!” – Alice Cooper

      “Oh yeah? Watch this!” – Mitt Romney

      “I hope that clears up the matter, your honor” – Lindsay Lohan

    • The greatest video ever posted on this blog. Amazing on so many levels.

  11. Still holding out hope that Lacob will bolster the roster for the playoffs?

    Ha.

    http://www.ibabuzz.com/warriors/2013/03/04/warriors-standing-pat-for-now/

    • A Hat for All Seasons

      “The concern for Jackson is how the new player would effect the current ones… Is it worth it to tinker with Barnes’ confidence?”

      Yes! He needs a tripleshot-turbo-mega-atomic asskicking wakeup call!

      “Would it be more beneficial to give those minutes to Draymond Green and Kent Bazemore, who need experience to develop?”

      As opposed to playing a sleepy Barnes? Absolutely. As opposed to bringing in an actual, fully-developed professional NBA wing player instead? Depends on whether management is serious about winning. Is Mark Jackson’s comfort level more important than a winning lineup?

      “How will who they bring in impact team chemistry?”

      A better question: Is the team chemistry so wonderful that it couldn’t be improved? What’s Barnes’ contribution to team chemistry? Is it even a positive? Honestly now.

      • the preacher would have a plausible-seeming argument about giving the guys he already has the opportunities, but only in the context of perimeter players. he’s established that thompson and barnes will get favorites’ treatment, and there’s no reason to think he’d change. but biedrins’ re-injury, and the established unreliability of bogut means they’re down to the damaged lee, the defensively limited landry, and the rookies ezeli or green for inside defense. there are inexpensive candidates for temporary band aids in the d-league. the rational conclusion we can take from their inaction, they’re overconfident and complacent !

    • FeltbotsFakeGirlfriend

      You have not said who is out there that Warriors should be looking to add. So please give us a better alternative to standing pat.

  12. Bogut participated in shootaround and will be a game time decision.

    I will not be able to recap tonight.

  13. With the Warriors being outscored by their opponents over the course of the season, and the Warriors mostly playing Western conference teams the remainder of the season, even with them playing mostly at home, they are not likely to win more than 42 games.Thus, playoffs not likely with or without Bogut. This does not have to be so if Jackson changed his starting line-up and players time on court.Instead, Jackson will confine to play in the fourth quarter his five players who commit the most turnovers and who are the Warriors worst defenders.

  14. Monta Ellis named Eastern Conf player of the week:

    http://www.insidehoops.com/blog/?p=12635

  15. I meant to say that the Warriors will win 44 games or 11 more this season.
    Some of the home games may well be excruciating for fans to watch.

    • we almost agree here, Frank, which makes me a bit queasy. when the season started they looked like a .500 team to me. they made a good try at shaking free of that with a decent start vs. spotty opposition, but are back in their normal mediocrity. going .500 for the remaining games would take them to 44 wins, which was the ceiling in my original guesstimation. it’s still possible for them to approach the almost-good, high rent district of the mediocre, should they close with 13-9 (46 win season), but can’t see them surpassing that.

  16. Coach Jim Boylan on Monta Ellis:

    “He’s all over the floor,” Bucks coach Jim Boylan said. “He’s playing defense. Offensively he’s getting after it. He’s doing everything for us right now.

    “I don’t know if anybody in the league is playing as hard as he is right now, with his intensity and focus. It’s an inspiration to his teammates.”

    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/bucks/193701711.html

    • FeltbotsFakeGirlfriend

      His own head coach likes him. WOW!!!! Groundbreaking!!! When the Bay Area media hypes up Warriors players you claim they are a PR mouth piece for the Warriors. But the local Milwaukee media does it and you cite it as examples of his greatness. Pull your head out of the ass of the Milwaukee Journal.

      • TheTruth@aol.com

        FFG,

        It must really bother you that a man from very humble and a economically deprived youth makes more money in a month than you will in your lifetime. Why else would you display such anger at a great game by one of the top guards in the NBA?

        Below is the link where Ellis shot 15-21 (75%) from the floor and got 34 points tonight in the Bucks victory over Utah. Now, if I were a coach, I would be happy with Monta too. The recap is wonderful.

        http://www.nba.com/games/20130304/UTAMIL/gameinfo.html

        • Monta AND Steph are playing at extremely high levels right now. As it has been argued by several posters on this blog, getting rid of Monta was addition by subtraction when it comes to Steph’s development.

          PLEASE STOP bellyaching about losing Monta!! That being said, the compensation was not good enough (Bogut).

          • Not Ellis for Bogut straight up…

            Ellis, Udoh, and Kwame’s $8 million expiring (can be argued used on Illysova?).

            Bogut, Ezeli and Jefferson (SJax and San Antonio), and the setup the tank for Barnes.

            Looking like a win win trade a year later.

  17. If the Warriors had gone after, a few years ago, a player like Amir Johnson—6-9, 235, athletic, skilled, with good length—and done something with the money they saved, this team would be in business now.

    The Toronto game was almost as painful to watch as a loss. Actually more painful than many losses against good teams.

    When Barnes and Bogut are on the floor, the offense shuts down. They can harass Curry, not worry much about Barnes or Bogut, and leave it up to Lee, who responded well tonight. Yes, Barnes got a few drives.

    If you lob the ball to him softly and there’s no one in front of him, Bogut can dunk. What else can he do? His shots look klutzy. He was seconds getting down the court on most offensive sets. He can’t cover faster players, wasn’t boxing out, wasn’t getting into position for rebounds either end. A guy his size should have many more rebounds.

    Where’s the beef?

    Bogut shouldn’t get back on the court until he shows he’s in some kind of shape.

    • rgg says:

      “When Barnes and Bogut are on the floor, the offense shuts down. They can harass Curry, not worry much about Barnes or Bogut, and leave it up to Lee, who responded well tonight. Yes, Barnes got a few drives.

      If you lob the ball to him softly and there’s no one in front of him, Bogut can dunk. What else can he do? His shots look klutzy. He was seconds getting down the court on most offensive sets. He can’t cover faster players, wasn’t boxing out, wasn’t getting into position for rebounds either end. A guy his size should have many more rebounds.

      Where’s the beef?

      Bogut shouldn’t get back on the court until he shows he’s in some kind of shape”

      ———————————————–

      Our Team, who posts infrequently here but daily over on Fast Break, posted the following (includes a question from another blogger):

      Our Team says:
      March 4th, 2013 at 11:23 pm

      I was at tonight’s game. Toronto shot extremely well even though the Ws played good D except for Q3. Q3 was a disaster. Amir Johnson was a monster on the O boards all night. I wish we could get that guy. HE would be the perfect guy to come off the bench for Lee or Bogut. The man can ball……..

      SurfCity says:
      March 4th, 2013 at 11:30 pm

      Thanks Our Team. For you and anyone else who watched the game in person or on TV, I have a question. How did Bogut look and seem tonight?

      Our Team says:
      March 5th, 2013 at 12:14 am

      Surf, I thought Bogut looked good, especially for a guy who hadn’t played in a couple of weeks. He was active on D and rebounded pretty well. He was still moving slowly but he can be effective regardless by using his smarts and length. He helps turn off the spigot under the basket on D.. He had a few very nice blocks including one which was wrongly called a foul. Although Lee’s numbers were great, I thought Bogut’s D and rebounding were much better than Lee’s. Bogut was actually switching on D patrolling the paint underneath and blocking out for rebounds.

      On O Bogut had a couple of nice backdoor cuts for slams from Curry. Bogut and Curry showed some nice chemistry tonight. They play like they both really understand the game.

      The big question: how will Bogut’s back respond to this game?

      • Steve, you are welcome to post here, but I’d appreciate it if you would respect the simple guidelines we discussed previously.

        First, there is no need to requote rgg at length. His post is right above yours, and it’s clear you are replying to him. Posts that are not contiguous can be referred to with a simple @.

        Second, cutting and pasting at length from other sites is a no-no. Particularly when it’s just comments from another blog thread. If you have your own thoughts on the subject, please state them yourself.

        The goal, as mentioned before, is to keep the comments section easily readable and enjoyable for everyone. Thanks.

        • Felt, to address your third paragraph first, my post contained comments/evaluations from a Warriors fan who actually attended last night’s game vs Toronto. Yes, that blogger posted those comments on another site, but so what? You don’t seem adverse to “advertising” other sites (you posted a link to Kawakami’s blog earlier) so I’m a bit confused why reposting the opinions of other Warriors fans from around the blogosphere is frowned upon (if those opinions are relevant to a popular Warriors topic from this very blog) simply because they didn’t originate here?

          My post was inspired by the lopsided divergence in opinions from two people who watched the same game and same player (Bogut), only difference being their vantage points (TV vs Oracle Arena).

          For one to say that Bogut wasn’t in position for rebounds, wasn’t boxing out, and shouldn’t get back on the court until his playing condition improves, while the other was saying pretty much the complete opposite (“Although Lee’s numbers were great, I thought Bogut’s D and rebounding were much better than Lee’s. Bogut was actually switching on D patrolling the paint underneath and blocking out for rebounds”), I thought the divergence was blog-noteworthy but not possible in this case without mixing the thoughts of multiple blog sites. Again, what’s the problem?

          Finally, I’m absolutely all for keeping your comments section “easily readable and enjoyable for everyone”. On that note, you’ll be happy to know that coming here today I was able to read the subsequent posts of “scotch”, yourself, “Frank”, “peteb24″, “Frank”, “PeteyBrian” x 2 and yourself again with the utmost of ease (by simply using my scroll-down key).

          Keep up the good fight.

          • I don’t know how I can make it any clearer to you Steve. This comments section is for the original observations and opinions of the posters, not for page-length cut and paste regurgitation.

            If you find something noteworthy on another site, then please be satisfied with linking to it, like everybody else.

          • Felt, in light of your comments, I suggest your time may be more wisely spent worrying about what makes for a truly great sports blog rather than trying to come up with silly “guidelines” on the fly.

            And BTW, since you seem ignorant to the process, while it’s easy enough to link (in this case) AL’s site it’s impossible to link an individual post from there (or here, for that matter).

          • I agree that my time should be spent more wisely. You’re blocked.

            While I welcome all views and manner of expression here, one thing I do not welcome is spam. Those unwilling to live by that simple rule will be blocked.

          • Steve—

            You’ve berated people here for being negative, but you’ve missed a very important and obvious point. Those who contribute here, especially our blogmaster, have a long standing interest in the team, deep and genuine. That is why we are critical. We want to see the best and respect the efforts we’ve seen. No one in the organization who has made real contributions to the team has not been praised, and anyone who gets criticized one day but proves himself later gets a revised opinion.

            The criticism voiced here has been developed over a period of time. You have to follow it to understand. And I don’t think anyone would mind someone countering with effective analysis. We’d like to get it right, not take sides or prove what good guys we are.

            You won’t see much of the criticism voiced here elsewhere, much of which rings true, yet it seems to offend you. So you react, as if you want to blot it out.

            You have been the cynic. I understand cynic is derived from the Greek word for dog. The attitude of a dog is that if you can’t eat it or f*ck it, pee on it, and that’s what you’ve done with your interminable and pointless comments. You turned this blog into your peeing ground, marking it as your territory and smelling it up for the others.

            Adios.

  18. Like Monta…but does anyone believe Monta if/when he achieves a new larger contract, he will continue to play D after the ink dries???

    I guess Bruce Jenkins & a few others do.

    Klay Thompson will be in felty’s HOF before that happens.

    • If he goes to a playoff team, and there are other legitimate defenders around him, then yes, I do. All day long.

      • Scotch-

        Do you know Ellis? What do you base your statements on?

        Likely Ellis won’t opt out on his contract because of the CBA signed last year which limits the money available for Free Agents.

        And you think he is so good, he can afford turning defense on and off on a whim? This is the NBA and he like most other players (save for a select few) would get torched if he did (or benched).

        I like his game a lot, and have seem him play in person many times. I hope he ends up on a decent roster whether its Milwaukee next year, or a playoff caliber team…he deserves it.

        He has been a total team player on the Bucks. Often times he is a decoy in the corner while Jennings pumps his stats with volume shots. Ellis guards the other team’s best guards Just like he did on the Woyas.

        And Warrior fans will be cheering for him on Saturday night.

        • Little confused by your post Shane. But I’ll just say after 8 years in the league Monta hasn’t always used the defensive skills he’s blessed with & anyone who has followed him closely has seen a player who drifts 7-8 feet from his man will trying to play the passing lanes for steals rather than fronting his man. Not always the most effective team defense in my book.

          Admittedly haven’t watched him much in Milwaukee, but Jenkins & Felt are painting this defensive juggernaut now. And I’m simply wondering if this is a drive for a new contract should he opt out. So yeah I’m questioning his motivation????

  19. The Warriors offense was terrific against the Raptors shooting 56% from the floor, but the defense was just horrific as the Raptors shot close to 50% from the floor thru the first three quarters. Not a playoff caliber defense.

    Particularly awful on defense was Bogut, Barnes, and Thompson. I charted shots inside over the first three quarters with Bogut playing. Time after time the Raptors scored inside. Even on his blocked shot the Raptors recovered the ball and scored. The Raptors A. Johnson had 12 offensive rebounds, that’s right 12 offensive rebounds, and shot 9-9 from the floor,most of both stats accumulated while Bogut was on the floor. Even Ezeli played better than Bogut did, but Jackson stupidly only played him 9 minutes, to Bogut’s 30 minutes.

    The Warriors played 39 minutes with a big center. Would the Warriors not have given up so many offensive rebounds and garnered more themselves if they played a smaller line-up the majority of time?

    The Raptors garnered 19 offensive rebounds to the Warriors 6. Ouch. Bogut had but one offensive rebound. That’s 13 extra possessions for the Raptors.

    Even in the fourth quarter when the Raptors missed 16 of 20 shots, such seemed more due to taking bad shots or missing open shots, as opposed to the Warriors playing good defense.

    Even with Bogut, Thompson, and Barnes shooting well, the Warriors would have been outscored but for Thompson scoring 8 points in the fourth quarter in a 2 minute span.

    The Warriors played the best with Jefferson on the court. Yet, his minutes once again was limited.

    If the Warriors don’t improve there defense, and the Warriors somehow make the playoffs, they will be lucky to win a game in the first round series.

    • Frank, were we watching the same game? Clearly Lee was out of position having to guard Bargnani which pulled him out of the lane and allowed Johnson to rebound at will over smaller defenders or Bogut who can’t get off the floor.

      Bargnani was hot from three because at least four of them were while being guarded by DLee who was caught halfway between the basket and the three point line.

      Also, why did Jackson go away from the line-up of reserves who destroyed the Raptors for a stretch in the second quarter? I think this game was all about matchups, and Jackson refused to exploit the Raps.

  20. Peteb24:

    I don’t disagree with you that D.Lee was pulled out of position by having to guard Bargnani on the perimeter, and that neither Bogut nor our “smaller defenders” could stop Johnson from dominating the Raptors offensive glass. Jackson should have tried a different match-up.

    The point I was making is that by playing small defenders in the front court, namely, Barnes and Thompson added to the Raptors dominating the offensive glass. And prevented the Warriors from garnering offensive rebounds as the wrong players played in the front court.

    In my judgment the front line should consist of any of the following players: Ezeli, Bogut, Lee, Landry, D. Green, and R. Jefferson, and that both Barnes and Thompson time playing SF should be limited.

    I don’t particularly care if Jackson goes big or small with the rotation I propose. If Jackson had used such a rotation the Raptors would not have dominated us on the their offensive glass, and would not have made so many uncontested shots inside.

    Barnes should not have played 22 minutes and Jefferson should not be playing only 9 minutes as he did last night. the Barnes was the only starter who had a minus rating. Meaning the Raptors outscored the Warriors when he played. This has happened a lot lately. Jefferson had a high plus rating when he was on the court in limited playing time.

    Jackson, although he preaches defense, often settles for putting an offensive player on the court rather than a defensive player. Last night it worked in the end as Barnes and Thompson hit a large % of their shots. But at the same time by playing them, our defense went to hell. I agree that Jackson employing the wrong match-ups also hurt the Warriors defensive performance.

  21. Dayum – Lee got stuffed by Lowry and Bargnani…

    Harrison Barnes – 2 blocked shots!!! That’s a whole month’s worth! Lol!

    I saw Bogut block 3 shots, only 1 in the box score. Needs to tip the desk more… Lol!

    Klay Thompson’s 22 points on 11 shots? The three threes in a row in the 4th quarter was a thing of beauty!!! Once Klay learns to get to the foul line one or two times per game and makes his gimme layups, he’s a 20 points per game scorer next year! Lol! Defense? Fouled out, but looking better.

  22. The most watchable team in the Eastern Conference has Indiana in its crosshairs in the first round. http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/53028/nba-short-attention-span-power-rankings-oh-deer

  23. Buried in this article is the reason why Greg Monroe is a terrible NBA center, and the reason why the Warriors caught a break against the Raptors.

    The Raps are tanking, and doing it by giving development minutes to Valanciunas, rather than the player who destroyed Bogut in their first meeting: Aaron Gray.

    http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/9017511/john-wall-wizards-kyrie-irving-cavaliers-rest-worst-teams-nba

    • Tanking is a bit strong a word, since Toronto doesn’t own their first round draft pick (big mistake on their part, due mostly to Colangelo’s expiring contract, no doubt). Valanciunas has been playing over Gray for a while now, since he got back from injury. It’s a delicate balance to play rookies, as Warriors fans who sat through the Wright and Randolph years can attest. But I’ve noticed the Raptors haven’t been ‘tanking’ enough to play Ross big minutes yet, whom you have compared to Barnes. Ross took a big step back around the time of the dunk contest.

      • I didn’t know that about the draft pick. Seems clear that in the Ws game at least, though, they placed development ahead of winning.

        Ross is buried behind DeRozan and Gay — you can’t sit those guys down. I wonder what the plan is there. Ross is immensely talented, and a two way player.

  24. since Steve found it noteworthy that two different fans had divergent observations/opinions of bogut’s participation, and peteb24 and Frank also adopted different views of the same game –

    do the participants here appreciate the importance of questioning their own biases ? did they miss something in their education and skipped seeing Kurosawa’s ‘Rashomon’ ?

    normal response from fans : what fun is there in being a fan if one can’t be biased ? and that’s my excuse for considering myself an observer rather than a fan.

    • moto, “bias” is hitting the nail on the head, especially in regards one of the two views I posted. The divergence was too gaping to be otherwise.

    • moto—

      Since we all don’t seem to be seeing the same thing, the more observations the better. Kind of like the blind men and that elephant.

      But I wonder if my eyes are deceiving me. My dominant impression of the Toronto game in a dozen or more possessions is of four Warriors up the court, waiting for Bogut, seconds behind. Frank’s tally seems to be correct.

      The issue may be how much value we attribute to what we see—apparently a block and a handful of points and 8 boards in 30 minutes against a weak team is fabulous in some eyes, or are omens of something greater.

      Concretely, however, I still haven’t seen anything in the stats to distinguish Bogut from the injured Mikki Moore, 2009-10 (60% FG, btw). But Moore wasn’t responsible for a seventh of the salary (or two-sevenths if you count Jefferson). And Nelson wouldn’t have played him any longer than he had to and would have replaced him another center, if he had one. He didn’t.

      When Bogut gives a transcendent performance, someone please point it out and explain the wonder so I can revise and understand. Tonight should be a good test, against Cousins. Koufos apparently did well against Cousins, as I look at the box score.

      And let’s not take Sacramento lightly—look at the Denver game last night.

      • rgg, you strike me as one of the more self-critical and objective participants here. when Steve characterized one of his sources as clearly biased, my guess, if Steve’s own bias was not taken into account, would be the guy with the loaded moniker ‘Our Team’, or maybe the observer who saw the game live, getting bombarded with group hysteria like the officials.

        bogut’s contributions considering his substantial minutes were modest, and his movements resemble the vintage 35+ yr. old bigs (duncan will do it at times) who have to be selective in choosing their moments to put the motor on full. the play he scored on a long downcourt pass from curry, he appeared like he’d gotten out on the break, but he was working from a head start because his defensive position wasn’t set in the paint area. he will probably get exposed against teams that run the pick and roll adeptly because he’s not quick enough to play the ‘hedge’ convincingly. his ball skills are obviously advanced (not his shooting, impaired by his damaged arm), but we have to wait to see if the team adjusts to maximize spacing and ball movement.

        relative to the latvian and rookie alternatives at center, bogut did not bring the team down in this particular contest vs. a weak team. the games leading up to the showdown vs. LA-L on the 25th will be a good test, starting with the next two, Sac and Hou. they’ve already lost to Sac with him playing relatively well, and they’ve been humbled twice by Hou. there’s another four home games that they’ll need to win at least three of four, Chi, NY, Mil, Det, in which he’ll encounter some of the best 5′s in the league but unfortunately not Drummond, out with a stress fracture in his back.

        bogut has to start his season over once more, during the most critical stretch of games the team has faced in four seasons. he might contribute just enough to help his ‘mates stagger into the playoffs, but the fans who think he’ll eventually emerge as one of the team’s best players are probably victims of a poor diet.

  25. I have the most respect for Jerry West. West indicating in the cited article that when he asked Jackson at his pre-hire interview why he thought he was prepared to coach given he had no experience. And that Jackson replied that as a broadcaster he picked the minds of coaches, and therefore was ready to coach. West said he found Jackson’s answer impressive. For me, it was comical and close to being idiotic.

    West was also not impressive recommending that the Warriors draft both Thompson, when Leonard and Faried were available.

    In baseball, great players are regarded as five tool players. Basketball has similar measures.

    Thompson doesn’t stack up against those measures. He doesn’t make a a decent number of assists, steals, block shots, nor offensive rebounds. He doesn’t get to the line, and does not make a decent % of 2′s (45%). His defense is terrible. He is simply a perimeter shooter. Plus he has a negative basketball IQ- by making needless fouls and dumb plays.

    Hardly worthy of starting, but on this team,he is worthy for our only decent guards are Jack and Curry. And for those who think he has upside and bright future, one should consider that he shot better in rookie season than he is now. He’ll never be playoff worthy.

    But he shot well last week, the first in a long time, so I’m sure fans will remain eternally optimistic.

    • We’ll never know West’s full opinion, and rightfully so. He’s not going to criticize the organization. Nor will we know his full advice on any decision or how much it is followed. Also, advice partly followed may not be good advice at all. (West may have agreed the team needed Bogut, but did he think it was worth the price paid? Again, we’ll never know.) moto earlier noted his frustration with the Memphis FO, whom he left.

      Meyers, in an interview some time ago, said that decisions are made by committee. Everyone has their say and they see what comes out of that (cf. “A camel is a horse designed by committee). But we know who the chair is and how much influence he has.

      • Klay Thompson’s numbers compare fairly well to Kawhi Leonard’s numbers – season and career. And Klay is a better perimeter shooter, passer, and ball-handler than Kawhi…

        Klay is an NBA starter. Lots of teams wish they’d have picked him in the draft. Klay is the Ws future.

  26. Hi Frank,

    I disagree with your observation that Bogut’s D was terrible against the Raptors and that that led to Omir Johnson’s big night. Besdies what I saw, let’s look at the numbers: In the critical third quarter during which Toronto was +15 Bogut and Johnson were only on the court together for 2 + minutes. Valuncianus was on the court with Bogut for 4+ of Bogut’s less than 7 minutes that quarter and Valenciunis did little, 1 pt and 1 board. Landry and Lee were guarding Bargnani and Johnson for the remainder of Q3 and got beaten badly.

    During Q4, when the Warriors re-took command of the game and were +14 overall, Bogut played over 8 minutes. During that stretch the W’s were +10. Johnson did get some good O boards and follow-up shots in both Q3 and Q4, but I saw Bogut having to leave Johnson several times to pick up another open player and no one rotating over to pick-up Johnson who got offensive rebounds and put-backs. Moreover, as I said, Bogut was in the game against Johnson when the Warriors re-took control in Q4. Cheers.

    • It’s not strange that Valenciunis did little when Valuncianus was on the floor.

      :]

    • The problem was Lee or Landry guarding Bargnani in the 3rd quarter and then Lee or Landry guarding Johnson in the 3rd and early 4th. Neither guy can guard Bargnani on the three point line, nor effectively keep Johnson off the glass. I would have like to see the Warriors go small at 4 (Jefferson) when Bargnani was on the floor and bigger (Lee) when Bargnani was on the floor.

  27. I’m optimistic about Bogut. This season he has had an awful lot to overcome, and it’s unlikely we’ll see him return to his old form in time to make a big difference in the playoffs. No surprise there. We all predicted that as far back as last April.

    With or without a healthy Bogut, this year’s Warriors team isn’t up for championship-level play anyway. They have too many missing pieces, an inflexible coach, and an extremely short bench thanks to the owner.

    But I think Bogut will be back a lot stronger next season. He has the best medical help and the best trainers in the world. He’s also proven he’s highly motivated and a hard worker. For evidence, he’s completely reconstructed his body, 30 pounds lighter than his old playing weight. It usually takes years to accomplish something like that, and Bogut did it in 6 months.

    Bogut is a winner. He’s also a very smart and skilled ballplayer. Despite the injury limitations, the unavoidable fitness issues, and the obvious pain he’s playing with, in the few games he’s played for the Warriors little sparks have shown through. A great ball handler, great explosiveness with control, great game smarts, and excellent natural timing.

    Given Bogut’s current physical limitations (his vertical leap looks to be about 6″ at the moment), he shouldn’t be blocking anyone’s shot right now. Against Toronto he blocked 3 and disrupted half a dozen others. Damn. That guy can play even on 1.5 legs. Damn.

    Here’s the deal for the rest of this season: The Warriors win a few, lose a few, then bow out of the playoffs early. Anyone wanna bet otherwise?

    I thought not.

    Bogut’s fault? No. Lee’s or Curry’s fault? No. Winners? Sort of, if you squint real hard and fast and chant yourself into a self-hypnotic state, but no. Not in any objective sense. They’re finally not an embarrassment this year. But they’re not winners.

    I’m really looking forward to watching a pain-free Bogut next year playing alongside a healthy Lee, Jefferson, Curry and Rush. With Thompson, Barnes and Green coming off the bench. It might not turn out that way, but it’s not unrealistic to hope that Mark Jackson and his masters can simply let their best players play.

    Until then, I’m outta here. The rest of this Warriors season is too predictable to be interesting. Thanks all for the fun times. See you next season.

    • Hat.gov, I think you’re being sarcastic about leaving…but no one can be sure because we can’t see you’re eyes, you’ve got something pulled down over them. Skipping the rest of the season would be a shame. It was only last week that we saw Curry drop 11 straight three pointers at MSG. Moments like that are two far between to miss because the season is too predictable. Plus March Madness doesn’t have many underdogs this year. They are ALL underdogs. You have to consider the Warriors as an underdog heading into the playoffs, which means that an upset could be in order in the first round. Especially against a team like the Clippers. That’s gotta excite. Stick around buddy.

    • **** Hat,

      You may be leaving the blog, but you’re still going to watch the rest of the games, start to finish, right? Face it, you’re hooked.

      I think you’re running out of hats.

      • W’s are in the top third of NBA teams this season. In the East, the W’s would be a 2-4 seed playing the cupcake east more often and the tough west less. They’re already a top 6 team in the West.

        This team is very, very young and haven’t played together for very long – healthy. They’ll grow together and incrementally improve in time.

        And Mark Jackson and the coaching staff have already proven they improved their in-game decisions and grown from their maiden season. Anyone who hasn’t seen growth – is blind or a negative nancy.

        The Ws now consistently outrebound their opponents. The Ws have the best perimeter backcourt in the NBA bar none.

        It’s good to be a W’s fan now.

        • hope you saw the sorry exhibition vs. Sac. if that’s a top third team, the n.b.a. is truly a billion dollar con game. yeah, the early season wins count the same as any, but that’s why their record looks stronger than how they’re playing now.

          • @Moto – Early season when they were playing better, the Ws lost to the Kings: twice.

            A win is a win – use this time to get healthy, integrate Bogut and a free agent pickup – and peak at the end of the season.

            Schedule: We all know the early season was cupcake east heavy, the middle season was road heavy, and the stretch run is home heavy.

            All I want is to qualify for the appropriate seed to play the Clips in the first round of the playoffs…

    • But Steve, The Andrew Bogut Myth continues–Next year already– no less! Lol!

  28. Nice spread 4 in Patrick Patterson. Wish we had him. He and Toney Douglas really changed this game.

  29. We sucked less than the Kings tonight—anybody have anything more sophisticated than that? But a sizable, athletic team like Sacramento will always reveal our weaknesses. Not having a center who can score, or a sizable, versatile scorer at 3, or really any size who can score after Lee. We lost when we tried to push the pace against them as well.

    Very fine game by Ezeli, however. He was quite active, both ends of the court, and I regretted seeing him leave 4th. quarter. Props, of course, to Klay for hitting in the clutch.

    But game ball to Cousins for being in one of his moods.

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