Monte Poole

Warriors to face Utah after Jazz rout Clippers in Game 7

Warriors to face Utah after Jazz rout Clippers in Game 7

OAKLAND -- Six days after sweeping Portland to advance to the second round of the playoffs, the Warriors now know their opponent.

The Utah Jazz put together a sterling performance Sunday afternoon in Los Angeles to vanquish the Clippers and earn the right to meet the defending Western Conference champion Warriors.

Game 1 is Tuesday night at Oracle Arena, with Game 2 scheduled for Thursday night. Tipoff for both games is 7:30.

The Warriors faced the Jazz three times in the regular season, winning twice. They won in their only trip to Salt Lake City, 106-99 on Dec. 8. Twelve days later, at Oracle Arena, the Warriors romped to a 104-74 win.

The Jazz posted their lone victory on April 10, a 105-99 win at Oracle Arena.

Those numbers are, for all intents and purposes, ancient history. The Warriors never faced a fully healthy Jazz team, not that it matters much to Draymond Green and his teammates -- particularly if the Warriors carry over the intensity shown in closing out Portland last Monday night.

“Whoever it is in front of you, if you’re locked in like that, if we’re locked in like that, I think we can beat anyone,” Green said after practice Sunday. “And I don’t care who it is. When we have that type of focus level, I think, no matter who you put in front of us it’s over.”

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Below is the schedule for the Western Conference Semifinals series between the Golden State Warriors and Utah Jazz:

GAME          DAY, DATE                 TIME (PDT)       LOCATION     

GAME 1      Tuesday, May 2          7:30 p.m.             Oracle Arena                            

GAME 2      Thursday, May 4        7:30 p.m.             Oracle Arena                             

GAME 3       Saturday, May 6          5:30 p.m.              Vivint Smart Home Arena         

GAME 4       Monday, May 8           6:00 p.m.              Vivint Smart Home Arena         

GAME 5*    Wednesday, May 10  TBD                      Oracle Arena                             

GAME 6*     Friday, May 12            TBD                      Vivint Smart Home Arena        

GAME 7*    Sunday, May 14          TBD                      Oracle Arena                            

Livingston on Kerr: 'He’s our leader ... somebody that we count on'

Livingston on Kerr: 'He’s our leader ... somebody that we count on'

OAKLAND -- Though much has been said about the agonies and challenges facing Steve Kerr, including speculation about when, or if, he’ll return as head coach of the Warriors, little has been put into words that capture the significance of his absence.

This is perhaps because it can be difficult to explain how one man is able to influence a roster of supremely talented athletes, at the wealthiest point of life, with wildly divergent personalities, at different career stages.

Veteran guard Shaun Livingston, a man who knows perspective as well as anyone in the NBA, took a moment Saturday to cut through the palaver and pity to offer a clear and vivid illustration of Kerr’s value as a man and as a coach.

“It’s just his presence, his personality,” Livingston began. “His character, the way he fits in with us. He’s kind of the battery pack, in the sense that he makes everybody go. He keeps us all (in harmony), everybody from staff, training staff, coaching staff to the players.

“He bridges the gaps, in the sense of communication, and he makes it light.”

In short, Kerr’s value to the franchise is far greater than his duties as a coach. He has an easy, breezy charisma insofar as he’s so comfortable submerging his own ego while being remarkably good at making everyone matter.

Moreover, Kerr is decidedly inclusive, explicitly emphatically open to ideas. He’s an outreach specialist whose sensibilities are contagious.

All of which helps create a sprightly and genial workplace, something the Warriors sought when they hired Kerr to replace the swaggering and dogmatic Mark Jackson in May 2014.

“Every day it’s something new, in a sense, and that’s hard to do,” Livingston said. “We’re here for six to nine months for the past couple years, seeing the same faces. So it is kind of like a job. But (Kerr) makes it more like a game and tries to make sure we’re enjoying ourselves out there.”

Kerr wants to live his life and coach basketball around four basic tenets: joy, mindfulness, compassion and competition. Maintaining a balance of the four can be difficult, especially when Kerr is dealing with the searing pain that has him on the sideline for an indefinite period.

But Kerr never strays far. His players seem to see and, more important, feel that.

Draymond Green and Kerr, each volatile in his own way, don’t always see eye-to-eye. Yet Green on several occasions has noted that Kerr “always seems to find the right thing to say, at the right time.”

Veteran David West points out that anyone who spends any time around Kerr can sense his basic humanity. Veteran Andre Iguodala, one of the team’s co-captains, speaks of Kerr’s curiosity and desire to broaden his horizons.

Stephen Curry, the other co-captain, kept the ball from the Warriors’ Game 4 win over Portland last Monday night, punctuating a series sweep, and gave it to Kerr, who missed Games 3 and 4 while coping with this prolonged post-surgery pain.

Lead assistant Mike Brown, the acting head coach in Kerr’s absence, concedes he has benefited from being around Kerr and this team.

“The tone he sets is the best I’ve been around,” said Brown, who has been involved in the NBA since 1992. “This is a special, special situation, and he’s big reason why.”

So it’s not just Livingston who throwing rose petals at the boss. He just happened to convey in a few words the effect Kerr has on the team and within the building.

“He’s our leader,” Livingston said. “He’s somebody that we count on.”

Warriors update health status of Livingston, Barnes

Warriors update health status of Livingston, Barnes

OAKLAND -- One day after every member of the Warriors participated in a full scrimmage, the official health updates were released.

Veteran forward Matt Barnes, out since April 8, is listed as probable for Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals that begin Tuesday at Oracle Arena.

Veteran guard Shaun Livingston, out since sustaining a finger/hand injury in Game 1 of the first-round series against Portland on April 16, is listed as questionable -- but with an asterisk.

“Hopefully, we’ll be ready for Tuesday,” Livingston said after a light workout Saturday.

Livingston informed NBCSportsBayArea.com earlier this week that he would have been available, hypothetically, if the Warriors were facing a Game 7.

As for Kevin Durant, who missed five weeks with a knee injury before returning April 8, only to sustain a calf strain in Game 1 against the Trail Blazers, he’s fully available.