Q&A with Mark Jackson -- Part 1

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Q&A with Mark Jackson -- Part 1

Editor's Note: Check back with the Warriors Talk Blog on Friday for Part 2 of Mark Jackson's interview.Mark Jackson sat down with some media members on Wednesday for question-and-answer session. Even though Jackson couldnt talk about current NBA players, the lockout or the lockouts impact, that didnt stop him from touching on several subjects.Heres the transcript:Question: Are you a long practice guy, short and crisp practice guy, or totally open to anything when were talking about practice?Mark Jackson: Theres no need to waste time and be over there just to say we got in three hard hours. No. Were going to be precise. Well have a purpose to it. It depends on how the guys are. If youre efficient and put quality work in, we can move on.
But ultimately its a long season, we will go over this stuff, go over it in detail and well be out of here. Im not a guy who wants to keep players here three or four hours just to say were here.Question: Will your assistant coaches have specific roles such as one person who is the big man coach and another who would work primarily with the guards?
Mark Jackson: Im not a guy who is going to put any one of these coaches in a box. The reason why I hired them is because I believe each one of them can and will be a head coach in this league. It would be unfair to any of them to say, well hes a defensive guy. I get a chuckle out of reading Michael Malone is my defensive guy. Hes not my defensive guy.Im going to be the head coach, Im going to be the defensive and offensive guy, Im going to be the rules guy, Im going to be the leader, but every one of those coaches will have roles within this coaching staff on both sides of the basketball.It would be unfair to any of them to say hes a big man coach or defensive coach or offensive coach. Im going to encourage all of them to be a complete coach.Question: So, theoretically, if you break the teams up into bigs and smalls, you could have one coach working with the bigs one day and then that same coach would be working with the smalls the next day?Mark Jackson: That could happen. That could happen. ... All of these coaches will be coaching both sides and every position.Question: How much are you into film work?Mark Jackson: Ive played for coaches who have used it above and beyond, and even out of control. Im a guy who will use it to show examples of what were preaching and whats getting done and also whats not getting done. Youre not going to see bags under my eyes because Ive watched film all night long.Are were going to be dragging out of a two-hour film session? No. We will use it too make a point of emphasis and then we will move on. Ive played for coaches where youre like, Another day of film? Cmon. Lets go.I think you go out on the floor and begin to talk about what needs to be corrected.Question: Did you actually have to create a playbook?Mark Jackson: Yeah. Yeah. When I was interviewed, I not only talked about what I was able to do but I also brought in stuff I had prepared during the course of my career: Plays that I liked, defensive concepts that I liked. So I was already ready. I had stuff. I also (kept) stuff that they ran in the past here that was very effective.Theres no need in me trying to re-invent the wheel if they did something very well and they were obviously very comfortable with certain calls. There are probably two or three things I kept within that playbook that they ran last year. Its a totally new playbook. It has my DNA all over it. And then depending on what we look like as a team, well make proper adjustments, either adding or subtracting.Question: One of the things weve heard about the Warriors having their own D-League team (Dakota Wizards) is that you can try things down there, see if they work, and then try them at the NBA level maybe an inbounds play?Mark Jackson: No. I mean, it sounds nice and probably great material to write about, but the truth of the matter is if youre Doc Rivers, Gregg Popovich, Phil Jackson, no matter who you are, youre trying something every night. I can remember calling Nets games and Kiki Vandeweghe - and I didnt agree with this -- the Nets had some sort of lottery where a fan could design a play.And the winning fan actually designed the play which Kiki Vandeweghe ran in the game. Thats not going to happen. I mean, thats overboard. But youre not far removed from that. I could sit here and draw up something and say lets try that later. Or I could go into practice and say Cmon over here, you five guys, were going to try this against a defense. That happens every single night during the course of a season.Question: How much have you been on the phone with (assistant coach) Mike Malone?Mark Jackson: Ive pretty much been on the phone with all of my guys, quite frequently and often. Mike has done an outstanding job from Day 1. When we went to visit the guys (Monta Ellis, David Lee and Stephen Curry before the lockout) putting things together (with this weeks coaching gathering). Hes been outstanding.But all the (assistant coaches) to make sure everybody has a good grasp of what were doing on both sides of the ball, make sure that were complete as a staff and make sure everybody understands it.

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.