Pacers vs. Warriors: What to watch for

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Pacers vs. Warriors: What to watch for

Programming note: Pacers-Warriors coverage begins on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area at 7 p.m. with Warriors Pregame Live. Stick around after the final buzzer for Warriors Postgame Live!

The Warriors will try to build on their recent good play onSaturday night when they play the Indiana Pacers at Oracle Arena.The Warriors have won four of their past five games and area season-high three games over .500 at 9-6. The Warriors are tied with the L.A.Clippers atop the Pacific Division and the No. 4 seed in the WesternConference.The Pacers also have won four of five to turn around atroubling start and push their record to .500. Theyre coming off a 97-92 winat Sacramento on Friday and have begun their four-game Western trip withconsecutive wins.Here are some things to watch for during Saturdays gamebetween the Pacers and Warriors:Continue to rebound: If theres been onesurprising aspect to the Warriors start this season its been their ability towin rebounding battles.Roy Hibbert is one of the biggest centers in the league andDavid West is among the NBAs toughest power forwards, which means the Warriorswill have their hands full up front.But Golden State has evened out any size deficiencies with agang-rebounding mentality that has served them well. In the Warriors last win, for example, shooting guard KlayThompson had a career-high nine rebounds against Denver.Limit turnovers: The Warriors have gottenaway with some sloppy play at times this season as theyre among the worstteams when it comes to committing turnovers.Against a team such as Indiana, which doesnt mind playing aslower style that limits possessions, its important to get as many possessionsand shots as possible.Point guard Stephen Curry is coming off his firstdouble-digit assist game of the season with 10 against Denver but over thecourse of the season his assist-to-turnover ratio has not been a strength.For the Warriors to continue to grow and continue to win,Curry and his teammates are going to have to start taking better care of theball.Take advantage of schedule: There are noautomatic wins or automatic losses in the NBA, but at the same time there aregames on the schedule that can favor one team over another.Saturdays game would seem to favor the Warrior, what withthe Pacers on a West Coast road swing and coming off a game on Friday nightagainst the Kings. The Warriors, on the other hand, didnt play on Friday andshould be well-rested.

Rise of Stephen Curry assisted in making Chase Center a reality

Rise of Stephen Curry assisted in making Chase Center a reality

SAN FRANCISCO -- On a cool Tuesday by the bay, the Warriors celebrated The House Being Built On The Sweat And Adoration Of Stephen Curry. And it was quite the spectacle, from the church choir warming festivities to the heavy-equipment cranes performing a synchronized dance routine.

After nearly five years of visualizing and planning and plotting and adjusting -- and, above all, turning around a once-hapless NBA franchise -- the Warriors successfully navigated the maze of litigation, coming out reaching for hard hats and shovels.

Construction on what officially will be known as Chase Center, built at a cost upward of $1 billion, can commence because there are no further legal hurdles to clear. The Warriors moved from Philadelphia to San Francisco in 1962, and then to Oakland in 1971, and now they’re packing up and crossing the bridge back to San Francisco.

How did Warriors CEO Joe Lacob and co-owner Peter Guber, who completed the purchase of the team in November 2010, accomplish such an enormous feat?

They planned early. They hired in 2011 a polished dealmaker in president/COO Rick Welts. They were unfailingly optimistic and persistent and adaptable. They listened. They made concessions. They would not and could not, ever, give up.

It’s basically the same strategy that helped them land Kevin Durant, who was the only player at the ceremony.

But there are two more factors that absolutely were critical. One, Lacob and Guber asked for no public money. And, two, they steadily improved their product.

Which brings us back to Curry. The quest for a new building benefitted mightily from the new owners inheriting Curry, who in revolutionizing the sport also revived a dormant franchise. He is the primary reason for the newly robust state of the Warriors, who followed Curry to their first championship in 40 years.

“That gave us tremendous momentum,” Guber acknowledged after the nearly two-hour ceremony in Mission Bay. “It gave us tremendous market awareness. It gave us the strength to know we could hit our numbers. It gave us the strength to know that the San Francisco Bay Area was getting a team that wasn’t a flash in the pan, but one that was built to sustain itself.”

Suddenly, the Warriors were the hottest team in California, no matter the sport. Try walking a block in the Bay Area during working hours without seeing someone rocking Warriors gear. Popularity raises the profile and also has influence.

If the Warriors choose to retain the name “Golden State,” instead of reclaiming the designation “San Francisco” Warriors, as they were known from 1962 to 1971, that also could be traced back to rise of Curry and his ability to lift his teammates and, by extension, the entire region.

Lacob said Tuesday that there’s a good chance the Warriors retain the name “Golden State,” echoing comments made by Welts on the CSN Warriors Insider Podcast of Jan. 5. The reasoning, according to the Warriors, is that the name has become widely recognized and, now, synonymous with success -- much as the former Boston, now New England, Patriots of the NFL.

“We are the Golden State Warriors,” coach Steve Kerr said. “It’s not up to me, but I don’t want it to change. It’s a unique name; it’s the only one like it in the league. I would like to see that remain. I fully believe we are still the Bay Area’s team, no matter whether we’re playing in Oakland or San Jose or San Francisco.”

There was much joy in the room, particularly on stage, Tuesday afternoon. Along with Lacob, Guber, Welts, Kerr and Durant were San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Chase bank executive Thasunda Duckett. All seven had complimentary things to say, with Durant even facing an artists’ rendering of Chase Center and saying “it’ll be fun playing in there.”

Curry was not attendance Tuesday, though he has appeared a previous gatherings regarding the new building.

Chase Center, covering 11 acres, is scheduled to open in the summer of 2019, two years behind the original projections stated by Lacob and Guber back in 2012, long before they secured naming rights. From multiple lawsuits to a major site change to more lawsuits, the road to Groundbreaking Day was fraught with challenges.

The organization overcame them all, with a crucial assist from the point guard.

Clippers PG Chris Paul to undergo surgery, expected to miss 6-8 weeks

Clippers PG Chris Paul to undergo surgery, expected to miss 6-8 weeks

LOS ANGELES — Chris Paul will undergo surgery on Wednesday to repair a torn ligament in his left thumb and is expected to miss six to eight weeks.

The Clippers said Tuesday that their All-Star guard will continue to undergo treatment and evaluation by the club's medical staff.

Paul was injured on a first-half play involving Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook in Monday night's victory over the Thunder. Paul didn't return in the second half.

The Clippers are 26-9 in 36 games with Paul in the lineup this season. He is averaging 17.5 points, 9.7 assists and 5.3 rebounds, and leads the NBA with 2.25 steals per game.