Ellis trade a big-time gamble for Warriors


Ellis trade a big-time gamble for Warriors

The only escape for the Warriors from the hellish trap of the last ... oh, lets just say five years and be generous about it ... was to blow up the roster and get down to scratch.

Well, boom.


Monta Ellis is gone, and so is Ekpe Udoh and the rumor of Kwame Brown, to Milwaukee for Andrew Bogut and his occasionally cranky body, and the old warhorse Stephen Jackson.

In other words, Jerry Wests interest in tearing it down to the studs and starting again and Joe Lacobs interest in making a trade splash superseded Lacobs chimerical playoff promise. The Warriors parted with their best trade chip and their most promising young big man for Bogut, a top six-center who has missed all but 12 games this season with a broken ankle.

In other words, this is a short-term disaster for the Warriors, whose only real hope now is to dump the season as elegantly as possible, including convincing Stephen Curry that his ankle needs more time and care than playing will allow.

Long-term ... well, long-term thinking has not been a Warrior long suit historically, so this trade at least has some intriguing ramifications.

It also breaks with Warrior tradition of absurdly overvaluing its own flawed players by including them in trade concepts with other teams truly elite players (see Howard, Dwight).

And finally, it is an acknowledgement that the Warriors were in the same cul-de-sac theyve been driving in since the mid-'90s -- trying to replace playoff contention with points, more against than for. And that something drastic needed to be done.

This is drastic. This is undoing this rebuild to start a new one. This is West finally winning the day from the stasis that has crushed this franchise time and again.

The problem, of course, is that if a Bogut-Curry-centric team isnt the answer either, were doing this again in two more years, perpetuating the laughable cycle of Were on the verge that has made them one of the sports least relevant teams.

Truth be told, the Warriors have actually been good at saying, This isnt working, but they have been exceedingly poor at showing the back end of that sentence, but this new thing were doing will.

And therein lies the grinding noise in fans heads. They suspected this was not a playoff team, and their trade speculations and dreams did not have a short-term surrender as part of the plan. To them, Ellis and Udoh got traded for Jackson, which in the short term is exactly what happened.

They will not be happy. They will fill the Coliseum Friday night to see the Bucks, and they will rage in their love for the departed Ellis and Udoh against their own management. Lacob is about to learn what the backhand of the honeymoon feels like, and for the amount of money he and Peter Guber spent to buy this team, the wounds will not heal soon.

Indeed, if they are the wounds the Warriors typically inflict upon themselves, they will not heal, Lacob will find out what Chris Cohan learned -- that owners have a short leash around here, and the more they talk without delivering, the shorter the leash is, and the harder it will be tugged. Cohan handled it by becoming a hologram, never seen, never heard but much vilified.

If Lacob is ready for that, and if Bogut turns out to be the Warrior the Warriors have always needed, Lacob will be able to fire off a series of bilious I told you sos at the people who are savaging him now.

But if not, well, owning the Warriors is a long and lonely thing. Six playoff appearances in 35 years takes its toll; one in 18 does, too. And someone will have to pay for this -- and pay hard.

It will either be us, for being so wrong about a bold and energizing move, or Lacob for blowing up the franchise to no good end again. It is measuring the dull gray known against the potentially exciting but very scary unknown, and the only thing at risk is Lacobs ability to sit at courtside and enjoy his basketball team.

Ray Ratto is a columnist for CSNBayArea.com.

SDSU RB breaks two of Faulk's records in win over San Jose State


SDSU RB breaks two of Faulk's records in win over San Jose State


SAN DIEGO -- Donnel Pumphrey Jr. ran for 135 yards and two touchdowns to break two school records and San Diego State rolled to a 42-3 victory over San Jose State on Friday night.

Rashaad Penny added 105 yards and three scores, including a career-best 73-yarder to close the scoring with 1 second left in the third quarter for the Aztecs (6-1, 3-0 Mountain West).

Pumphrey, the nation's leading rusher with 1,246 yards, has 58 career rushing touchdowns and 63 touchdowns overall, breaking Marshall Faulk's school records.

Christian Chapman completed 13 of 18 passes for 167 yards and a 4-yard touchdown to David Wells to open the scoring.

The Spartans (2-6, 1-3) were limited to 203 yards while the Aztecs had 444, 277 on the ground.

San Diego State's defense has not allowed a touchdown to a conference opponent in 12 quarters and has a 14-game winning streak against MWC teams.

Cal outlasts Oregon in 2OT shootout, seals win with interception


Cal outlasts Oregon in 2OT shootout, seals win with interception


BERKELEY -- After more than 200 plays, 101 points and 1,086 yards of offense, it was California's defense that stepped up at the end to seal another thrilling game for the Golden Bears.

Matt Anderson kicked a 28-yard field goal in the second overtime and Jordan Kunaszyk ended the game with an interception on the FBS-record 203rd play, giving California a 52-49 victory over Oregon on Friday night.

"It's crazy," Kunaszyk said. "I just remember going into OT, I was like, `Man, another one of these games.' Every one of our games is close. I wouldn't want it any other way."

This was the sixth straight game for Cal that went down to the closing minutes, including an overtime loss at Oregon State two weeks ago and a home win against Utah the previous week when Cal's defense came up with a late goal-line stand.

Five of those six games featured both teams scoring at least 40 points but the defense delivered when it mattered most.

"Our defense's back was against the wall, just like it was against Utah," coach Sonny Dykes said. "Jordan made a big time break on the ball. You could kind of see it developing. He threw it a tad bit late."

Davis Webb threw five touchdown passes and ran for a sixth to lead the way for the Golden Bears (4-3, 2-2 Pac-12), who snapped a seven-game losing streak to Oregon.

Freshman Justin Herbert threw six touchdown passes and rallied Oregon back from a 20-point deficit in the third quarter but it wasn't enough for the Ducks (2-5, 0-4), who lost their fifth straight game for their longest skid since 1996.

"I feel awful that we couldn't get it done for them, of how they've stuck together and weathered through a lot, they've had a lot of opportunities to splinter and they haven't," coach Mark Helfrich said.

The one positive for the Ducks was the play of the freshman Herbert, who threw for 258 yards, including a 20-yard TD to Jalen Brown in the first overtime, in his second career start.

"He's obviously very hard on himself with how the end occurred but we should've really never been in that situation," Helfrich said. "I'd do the exact same thing at the end, and trust him to make the play."

Oregon: Just 21 months since playing for a national championship, the Ducks find themselves at the bottom of the Pac-12. The collapse has been complete. The defense got torched once again, leaving receivers unguarded for touchdowns and allowing scores on six straight possessions. The offense punted on its first four drives against a Cal defense that ranks near the bottom in all statistical categories. The Ducks were also undisciplined, committing 14 penalties for 134 yards, including personal fouls on back-to-back plays in the first half.

California: Dykes had lost all 12 games to Oregon, Stanford, USC and UCLA as Cal coach before this breakthrough win. But the Ducks aren't the same team they were just a few years ago, taking some of the luster off of it. The Bears were sloppy as well, committing 14 penalties and struggling on defense but pulled out the win behind Webb's strong play and a stellar running game. Tre Watson ran for 154 yards and Khalfani Muhammad had 148.

Dykes had little hesitation going for it on fourth down against the Ducks' porous defense, converting four straight tries - including two in his own territory - before getting stopped on a fourth-and-1 in the third quarter. The Bears are 15-for-17 on fourth down this season.

Tony Brooks-James ran for 109 yards on 15 carries for the Ducks, while starter Royce Freeman was held to 10 yards on 15 carries. Freeman said he was healthy after sitting out the second half against Washington two weeks ago with an injury.

Oregon: The Ducks host Arizona State next Saturday.

California: The Bears have another weeknight game when they travel to USC next Thursday, a fact that drew the ire of Dykes.

"I think everyone in the locker room was tired," he said. "I know I certainly am. We'll be back at it tomorrow. We have a game in six days, which is crazy, absolutely nuts."