Warriors Merely Hanging On

Warriors Merely Hanging On

Mar. 6, 2010

WARRIORS PAGEWARRIORS VIDEO

Were really not judging the Warriors on wins and lossesanymore. Were judging them on whether they hung in a game or not. Thats not good. But thats the way it is, and so lets throw some stuffaround about the Warriors 122-117 loss at Atlanta on Friday ... Thats now two games on this trip where Anthony Morrow had abig 3-pointer that he didnt make. Against Miami, he had a 3 that would havegiven Warriors lead with 12 seconds left, but it didnt go down. Friday night, Morrow missed a 3 with 40 seconds left thatwould have tied the game against the Hawks. -- Speaking of two games now on the trip Never going toquestion Ronny Turiafs effort, but hes played a big role in two of the threegames thus far. Turiaf couldnt come up with Stephen Currys super-crisppass on a pick-and-roll that likely would have been a dunk and tie game lateagainst Miami. Curry got the turnover, and deserved it, but Turiaf had a shotat catching the pass.Against Atlanta, Turiaf committed an inexplicable sixth foulwith 44 seconds left trying to deny Al Horford a little bit from the basket.The Warriors had just gotten a three-point play by Curry at the other end topull within one. Horford ended up making both free throws to put Atlanta upthree, setting the stage for Morrows miss.-- My man (thats the way I refer to him) Bruce Jenkins in theChronicle wrote that coach Don Nelson wasnt in on the proposed deal that wouldhave sent Monta Ellis to Memphis for O.J. Mayo and Hasheem Thabeet. Hes absolutely right. Nelson had no idea about that. AndNelson has no say-so when it comes to personnel decisions. Thats the way itsbeen most of the season. This was something I banged out from a mid-December postabout the subject: Time to clear up a little misconception about Nelson andhis role when it comes to personnel matters. Point is, he doesnt have much ofone. From what Im told, general manager Larry Riley certainlydoesnt clue in Nelson on the day-to-day of whats going on.In fact, Riley makes a point not to include Nelson oneverything because he knows how itchy Nelson can get when it comes down to thiskind of stuff. If the Warriors make a trade, Nelson isnt going to be the onedoing it. The Stephen Jackson trade was all Riley and the next trade will beall Riley, too. Bottom line is Nelson is out of the loop when it comes tomost of personnel, and thats the way the Warriors want it.--Matt Steinmetz

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NBA Gameday: New-look Kings get first shot at I-80 bragging rights

NBA Gameday: New-look Kings get first shot at I-80 bragging rights

The Sacramento Kings make the 90 mile commute to Oakland for a match up against the first place Golden State Warriors Friday evening. The Kings have lost three straight and are just 2-11 over their previous 13 games as they transition to a youth movement.

Buddy Hield tied his career-high with 21 points versus the Milwaukee Bucks last time out. He’ll face a different beast against the Warriors. Klay Thompson is one of the best two-way shooting guards in the league. He can light you up from long range and shut you down with physical play on the other side of the ball.

Matt Barnes joined the W’s after being waived by the Kings during the All-Star break. The 37-year-old forward has played nearly 20 minutes per night for Golden State, averaging 5.8 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 11 games.  

OPENING LINE

Warriors by 17.5

MATCHUP TO WATCH

Buddy Hield vs. Klay Thompson -- Hield is averaging 14.2 points and 3.4 rebounds in 27.6 minutes over 14 games with the Kings. The rookie shooting guard is shooting 50 percent from the field, 44.9 percent from 3-point range and posted double-figure scoring in all but two games since coming over via trade during the All-Star break. Thompson is one of the premiere player at his position, posting 22.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game. The Kings have been on the receiving end of plenty of his scoring outbursts over the years.

WHERE THEY STAND

Kings: 27-44 third place in Pacific

Warriors: 57-14, first place in Pacific

INJURY REPORT

Kings: SG Malachi Richardson (torn hamstring) status unknown at this time, F Rudy Gay (torn left Achilles) out for season.

Warriors: SF Kevin Durant (tibial bruise, knee) out.  

SERIES HISTORY

The Warriors lead the season series at 2-1 with a 109-86 victory at Oracle Arena. Golden State holds a 199-186 lead over the Kings all-time and a 71-65 advantage during the Sacramento-era.

QUOTABLE

“I’m trying to kill ‘em, plain and simple. Things didn’t go well there. They’re the enemy now, so we’re trying to kill ‘em - beat them by 50.” -Matt Barnes on his approach against his former team

 

NBA Gameday: Barnes, Warriors welcome Kings to Oracle

NBA Gameday: Barnes, Warriors welcome Kings to Oracle

OAKLAND -- Seeking their sixth consecutive win, the Warriors will get their first look at the dramatically revamped Sacramento Kings when the teams meet Friday night at Oracle Arena.

A win by the Warriors, combined with a Cleveland Cavaliers loss, would give the Warriors homecourt advantage in any NBA Finals scenario.

But the Warriors (57-14) may have to squint to recognize these Kings, who last month traded star big man DeMarcus Cousins -- the team’s mainstay for seven years -- to the Pelicans for Buddy Hield, Tyreke Evans and other considerations.

The Kings (27-44) have lost 11 of 14 games since the deal and are slowly sinking out of the Western Conference playoff race.

BETTING LINE

Warriors by 17.5

MATCHUP TO WATCH

Klay Thompson vs. Buddy Hield: It’s a battle between the Bahamians, or as Thompson has said of Hield, “My Bahamian brother.” Thompson has been cooking, shooting 53.2 percent (25-of-47) beyond the arc and 55.3 (52-of-94) percent overall over the last five games. Hield, a rookie from Oklahoma, has adapted well to Sacramento, scoring in double digits in 10 of 11 games while shooting 48.2 percent (27-of-56) from deep and 50.0 percent (60-of-120) overall this month.

INJURY REPORT

Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L knee sprain, tibial bone bruise) is listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the NBA Development League.

Kings: F Rudy Gay (L Achilles tear) and G Malachi Richardson (R hamstring partial tear) are listed as out.

LAST 10

Warriors: 7-3. Kings: 2-8.

SERIES HISTORY

The Warriors have won two of three meetings this season and 15 of the last 17 overall, including the last seven games in Oakland.

THREE THINGS TO WATCH

THE TRANSITION GAME: Though the Kings are playing faster in the post-Cousins era, they still have little chance of matching the pace at which the Warriors prefer to play. Expect the Warriors to push at every opportunity, even if it means committing a few turnovers, in order to coax Sacramento out of rhythm. The Kings rank 26th in fast-break points and actually had a game in which they scored 0 fast-break points.

BOMBS AWAY: The Warriors rank third in 3-point shooting percentage (38.3), while the Kings rank 26th in 3-point percentage defense (37.2). There will opportunities galore for Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala, Ian Clark and Thompson -- who two years ago torched the Kings with an NBA-record 37 points in a quarter.

THIS “SKAL” GUY: Rookie forward Skal Labissiere, a 6-foot-11 package of raw talent, has been something of a revelation for the Kings. Emerging from the shadows in the wake of the Cousins deal, he has reminded observers why he was such a heralded prep recruit from the Memphis area. This sounds like a job for Draymond Green.

QUOTABLE

“Try to kill ‘em, plain and simple. Things didn’t go well there. They’re the enemy now. So we’re trying to kill ‘em. Beat ‘em by 50.” -- Warriors forward Matt Barnes on facing the Kings, who released him last month.