Again, Curry, Lee don't do much down stretch


Again, Curry, Lee don't do much down stretch

The Warriors were in another tight game on Wednesday nightand failed to come through down the stretch. They ended up with another loss this one a painful 93-91 defeat to the Portland Trail Blazers.The Warriors have not fared well in close games this season,and what has remained consistent throughout is how little Stephen Curry andDavid Lee two of the teams cornerstone pieces are involved at the mostcritical times.REWIND: Some crunch-time stats for Warriors players
Thats what happened again on Wednesday. Lee had a nicegame, scoring 29 points and grabbing 11 rebounds, but he didnt score after histhree-point play with 3:39 put the Warriors up five.REWIND: Lee's 29 not enough; Warriors fall to Blazers 93-91
Curry didnt do a whole lot late, either, although he didmanage to coax a foul out of Gerald Wallace after getting double-teamed. Currymade both free throws to put the Warriors up 90-88 with 1:17 left.But overall, Curry took just one shot in almost ninefourth-quarter minutes a missed 3-pointer with five minutes left and thatjust doesnt seem like enough for a guy who is one of the games bestshooters.RELATED: Jackson addresses lack of late production from Lee, Curry
Not to mention a player the Warriors organization hasexpressed a desire to build around.And Lee hasnt been a factor when its come to picking upthe scoring slack late in games. Hes still looking for his first real big basketof his Warriors career and his first field goal at any time in the last twominutes of a close game this year.The argument on the other side and valid is that neitherCurry nor Lee has been put in a position to make important shots when the gameson the line. Most of the time the ball is in Monta Ellis hands, and theres noquestion Ellis is the teams best scorer and perhaps only player on the teamcapable of creating his own shot.But in Wednesdays loss to Portland, it wasnt Ellis takingmost of the late-game shots because Ellis didnt play in the fourth quarter.Instead, it was Nate Robinson who was in on every play. Or seemingly just aboutevery play.Robinson made some big buckets, no doubt. But he missed afew too many, including a runner in the lane with 32 seconds left that couldhave tied the game.And then on the games final possession -- one that startedwith six seconds and an inbounds pass in the backcourt -- Robinson lost controlof the ball while trying to create in the lane, and got it to Brandon Rush toolate in the corner.But forget the fact that Robinson didnt make those plays. Perhapsmore noteworthy was that Robinson took nine shots in the fourth quarter, andthe next closest player to him was rookie Klay Thompson with three.In other words, Curry and Lee two of the franchises mosttreasured players simply dont get involved enough, or at all, when thestakes are highest. Again, perhaps thats the case because the ball is mostlyin the hands of Ellis down the stretch, or in Wednesdays caseRobinson.But the other part of that is maybe neither player isinjecting himself into the actionenough or at all.Regardless why its happened, its clear that entrustingEllis and Robinson with virtually all the end-game decision-making hasntworked well for Golden State. If thats the case, isnt it time to force-feedsome touches for Lee and Curry? At least make them show you they cant doit.And if Lee and Curry cant get it done or they dont wantany part of getting it done, well, wouldnt that be good to know movingforward?

Azubuike: Paul George 'definitely put in a call to Klay Thompson'

Azubuike: Paul George 'definitely put in a call to Klay Thompson'

Paul George can become a free agent in 2018.

Klay Thompson is scheduled to hit free agency a year later.

Might they be future teammates with the Lakers?

"He's (George) definitely put in a call to Klay Thompson, and obviously he feels like Klay Thompson is a guy that he would love to play with in the Lakers," NBC Sports Bay Area Warriors analyst Kelenna Azubuike said on 95.7 The Game on Tuesday morning. "Now, for all we know, Klay could have said, 'Buzz off, I'm staying with the Warriors.' It doesn't really mean much that he put in a call. They probably had a nice conversation.

"Maybe they even talked about something other than basketball, and didn't talk about basketball at all. Who knows. It doesn't really mean much, but he's definitely put in calls to Klay Thompson; he's talked to LeBron James and he's trying to see if he can figure out who can come with him to the Lakers."

George reportedly told the Pacers he isn't going to stay with the franchise long-term and Indiana is currently looking to trade him before he has the opportunity to walk.

George -- who grew up in Los Angeles -- wants to suit up for the Lakers.

Klay is entering Year 3 of a 4-year, $69 million deal.

If he continues to play at his current level, he will absolutely be in line for a max deal when his contract is up.

A lot can change between now and then, but one thing is clear at this point: Klay doesn't want to go anywhere.

“At the end of the day, I’ve tasted winning,” Klay told Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group at the championship parade. “No stats can ever overcome that. I’d rather win these championships and score no points than have 60-point games and 37-point quarters. These championships are everything to me...

"It’s so much more to being part of a team and being part of something special. You can build a legacy ... the thing with basketball these days, there’s a lot of individuality with stats, numbers, Who’s the greatest, he’s a better player than him, he put up this many points.

"But Steve (Kerr) helped me a lot with that. He said nobody is going to remember how many points you put up. They are going to remember how many championships you win."

Klay was born in Los Angeles, grew up rooting for Kobe Bryant and went to high school in Southern California.

His father, Mychal, won two titles with the Lakers.

"But I doubt, I highly doubt that Klay Thompson will end up leaving the Warriors," Azubuike added.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

Dorell Wright knew Steph and Klay would be this good because...

Dorell Wright knew Steph and Klay would be this good because...

Dorell Wright played for the Warriors in 2010-11 and 2011-12.

He spent a lot of time with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. 

Did he think they would end up being this good?

"Yeah. I seen it because they put the time in, they put the work in," Wright told Alex Kennedy on the HoopsHype Podcast. "Sometimes we'd have to go talk to Steph like, 'Yo, you know we got a game tonight? You're going pretty hard.'

"He's a little different, man. He takes coaching and advice from everybody. If you're telling him something that's gonna better him and help him, he's gonna sit there and listen to you. He's not gonna be one of those guys that thinks he knows everything.

"I'm happy for his success ... I'm just happy he's back and being healthy."

And what about Klay?

"A guy that I had to shoot with every day in different 3-point drills that Mark Jackson used to have us doing," Wright explained. "And I'm always going first because I'm the starter, and then it would be Klay and B-Rush. I'm making 20 shots in a drill and Klay would come right behind and hit like 26, and it's like, 'Dang, this dude really is a dead-eye knockdown shooter.'

"So that was a great experience being around another good shooter and a guy that puts the time in to get better each and every day."

During the 2010-11 season, Wright set the Warriors' single-season franchise record with 194 3-pointers (Curry made 151).

The following year, he made 105 in 61 games.

Wright, who will turn 32 in December, has not played in a regular-season NBA game since April 1, 2015.

He spent the 2015-16 season in China, before returning to the Heat for the playoffs.

He was in training camp with the Clippers last October, but was waived during the preseason.

Wright enjoys watching the Warriors play and wants to make an NBA comeback.

Perhaps with his former squad...

"They play well with each other, they move the ball and they take good shots ... that's pretty hard to guard," Wright said. "I didn't get a chance this year to play them so I can't really, really tell you how hard it is (laughing), but they make it look real easy out there.

"Hopefully I can get back out there next year so I can be either on their side or on the side of trying to dethrone them."

Wright also made sure to give some love to Warriors fans.

"Some of the most loyal fans that you will ever encounter -- rowdy, loud and just love their Bay Area teams ... I'm still a resident of the Bay Area and they still show me love like I'm a current Warriors player everywhere I go...

"The fan love is crazy."

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller