Steinmetz: Warriors poised to move soon on coach?

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Steinmetz: Warriors poised to move soon on coach?

May 13, 2011STEINMETZ ARCHIVEWARRIORS PAGE WARRIORS VIDEOMatt SteinmetzCSNBayArea.com

Warriors owner Joe Lacob and general manager Larry Riley made it clear in late April that there was no timetable for naming a new coach. Both went so far as to suggest it wasn't even necessary for the Warriors to find a coach by the NBA's draft in late June.But that was then.Things have changed some. The reality is that if Lacob and Riley have a man in mind to replace Keith Smart, they might want to get a move on.Why?RELATED: 13 potential replacements for Keith Smart
Because there are too many coaching vacancies out there -- and possibly more to come - and perhaps not enough A-list coaches available.As of now, there are coaching vacancies in Golden State, Houston, Indiana and with the L.A. Lakers. But there could be more movement in the coming weeks.It is certainly possible that Detroit's John Kuester will be let go once an ownership change takes place for the Pistons. That deal is expected to close by the end of May.There are also plenty of questions in Toronto, where general manager Brian Colangelo has yet to have his contracted extended -- and it expires on June 30. So, as you would figure, there's no assurance that coach Jay Triano will return.And don't forget Minnesota, where there remains a chance that Kurt Rambis will be fired.Obviously, the Warriors have a head start in the selection process over those teams, and it might be something they want to stay ahead of. It only makes sense that the more jobs that are out there, the less the chances the Warriors stand of getting their man.It has been reported that the Warriors either have interviewed or will interview Dallas assistant Dwane Casey, former Cleveland Cavaliers coach Mike Brown and current Lakers assistant Brian Shaw.RELATED: Warriors get permission to talk with Lakers' Shaw
The Warriors were also said to be interested in gauging the interest of former Jazz coach Jerry Sloan and former Knicks and Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy. It is unknown whether the Warriors have spoken to either or whether either would be interested in the job.Rick Adelman, who was recently let go in Houston, may be on the Lakers' radar when it comes to replacing Phil Jackson. Of course, that would free up Shaw, considered L.A.'s lead candidate at this point.Shaw would likely draw interest from the Pacers, where Larry Bird is president of basketball operations. Shaw and Bird have a history from their playing days with the Boston Celtics in the late 1980s and early 1990s.Shaw had discussions with Indiana back in 2007, but the Pacers hired Jim O'Brien. Indiana is also said to be interested in Casey and Brown.Houston reportedly is to down to three finalists: Former Nets head coach and current Boston assistant Lawrence Frank, former Timberwolves head coach Kevin McHale and Casey.As you can see, some of the same candidates are in the mix for different positions. In other words, maybe there is a sense of urgency -- not just for the Warriors but for any team with a vacancy.NEWS: Jackson leaves Lakers for adventures beyond L.A.
Allowing a candidate to emerge during the interview process might now be a risky strategy for a team, particularly when that guy may be under consideration elsewhere. Teams might want to identify their man quickly and go after him decisively.After all, if they don't, some other team probably will.

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.