OAKLAND As the Warriors regular season creeps closer andcloser, the questions about center Andrew Bogut get louder and louder.Will he or wont he be ready for the Oct. 31 opener againstthe Suns in Phoenix?Bogut is still targeting that game to return, but it seemsapparent there is a real possibility his Warriors debut could come later thanthat.After the trade, obviously you want to be out there, Bogutsaid earlier this week. Thats the dangerous thing about these injuries. Icant let what other people are thinking and wanting affect the injury. I needto come back 100 percent. I want to be out there. Ive thought of manyscenarios, and I want to be 100 percent ready for that first game.But if we get to a point where its still 95 percent, Ill play in the second game. But Idefinitely want to be back out there. But at the same time I want to be verysmart with it. I dont want to come back for the first game and then in lateNovember have a setback. I want to come back and be back. I dont want to haveto miss games or practices.Bogut fractured his left foot on Jan. 25, and has yet to becleared to play 5-on-5 and resume all basketball activities. However, he hasstepped things up in the past few days and his goal remains to play in apreseason game or two before he gets out there for real.I would love to play in a preseason game or two because Ihavent play a game of basketball since January, Bogut said. For my mentalcapacity I want to get out there and play a game or two before the first(regular-season) game. I dont want to be rehabbing and then go straight intoan NBA game. Its a tricky situation, but you just have to staypositive.One way to stay positive would be to get the go-ahead in aweek or so to play five-on-five.Just running, dunking, cutting those are the main threethings that I have problems with and Im starting to respond well to that. Buttheres still some tightness when it gets fatigued and thats the main problem.It gets fatigued and my running pattern changes a little bit and thats goingto cause some problems. Otherwise, short bursts of 30- and 40-minute sessionsare great and Im doing well.Until Bogut returns, rookie Festus Ezeli will hold down thecenter spot. But Warriors coach Mark Jackson acknowledges that not having Bogutmeans the Warriors arent at their best.It certainly affects us, Jackson said. The reason why isbecause hes our starting center and hes a weapon that we dont have. Festuscan duplicate some things defensively he can protect the paint, he can blockshots and he can rebound. But Boguts ability to obviously defend, to postup to pass the basketball gives usa weapon that we havent practiced with. It definitely affects us. And guys onthis team have never played with him before and hes never played with them.But that will take care of itself.
The Warriors led the NBA in offensive rating (113.2) during the regular season.
The Warriors are second in the league in offensive rating (115.8) in the playoffs.
Scoring is not an issue.
But will we see the Warriors run more pick-and-roll in the NBA Finals, specifically the Steph Curry-Kevin Durant combination?
"Steve (Kerr) isn't really into this much," interim head coach Mike Brown told ESPN's Zach Lowe. "He's more about spacing and movement -- and that's fantastic. I love Steve, and wherever I might go, I'm going to incorporate a lot of stuff he does.
"But in the playoffs, sometimes you have to attack a mismatch. When I need a bucket, that's what I'm going to do."
Mr. Kerr -- your response?
"Mike is right about me, but I also recognize the need to do it more as defenses get tougher," Kerr told ESPN. "It's about finding the right balance between isolating when we need to, and keeping the flow that makes us who we are."
Steph Curry averaged 6.1 pick-and-roll possessions per game -- 28th in the NBA.
That number is up to 7.5 per game in the playoffs.
“I think we’re still at our best when we’re simple about what we’re doing,” Curry recently told Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group. “Whether it’s pick-and-roll and you’ve got everybody spaced. You’ve got shooters where they need to be. You’ve got the dive man where he needs to be with space to put pressure on the rim.
"You’ve got a ball-handler playmaker with it that can come off and shoot it, get a bucket. Sometimes it doesn’t need to be more complex than that. We’ve got the awareness that, that needs to happen.”
Success leads to flattery, which begets mimicry. Tremendous success leads to breathless flattery and ceaseless mimicry.
That’s where the Warriors are these days, a model franchise with a brain trust has gained respect across the NBA.
That’s why personnel executive Travis Schlenk is being recruited away by the Atlanta Hawks.
A superb talent evaluator who doesn’t stalk the spotlight, Schlenk is in negotiations to become Atlanta’s general manager and it is anticipated an agreement will be reached within 24 hours, NBCSportsBayArea.com confirmed through league sources on Wednesday.
That the Hawks targeted Schlenk as their next general manager was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski The Vertical.
Schlenk, 43, has served in various capacities for the Warriors since joining the franchise 2004, becoming assistant GM in 2001 and most recently serving as vice president of basketball operations and assistant GM.
He has had considerable input in Warriors drafting decisions in recent years and was a particularly vocal advocate for such selections as Draymond Green and Pat McCaw, among others.
Much of the appeal of the Atlanta job stems from the team having 11 picks over the next three drafts.
Schlenk, whose scouting instincts will be missed, is set to become the first key departure from the staff and roster that have been together throughout this season.
Assistant coach Luke Walton, who served as acting head coach for 43 games last season, was recruited away a year ago to become head coach of the Lakers. Assistant coach Alvin Gentry was recruited away in May 2015 to become head coach of the Pelicans.