Jim Fitzgerald, who co-owned the Warriors from 1986 until 1994, passed away in Janesville, WI, on Monday. He was 86. Fitzgerald and Dan Finnane owned the Golden State Warriors beforeChris Cohan and after Franklin Meuli during the "Run TMC" era.Having begun covering the Warriors in the mid-1990s, I've heard a lot about Fitzgerald and Finnane -- whether it be from (Hall of Famer) Chris Mullin,(legend) Alvin Attles, (former player) Mitch Richmond, (former director ofscouting) Ed Gregory, (strength and conditioning coach) Mark Grabow, (athletic trainer) Tom Abdenour, (former coach) Don Nelson or countless other people who overlapped withFitzgerald and Finnane, they all spoke glowingly of them.Im deeply saddened to learn about the death of JimFitzgerald, who I considered a very dear friend and someone who epitomizedclass. Said Attles. Mr. Fitzgerald was simply a terrific man of incrediblecharacter and high standards who was a model owner for the Warriors and theNBA."He was true; they both were," Mullin said of Fitzgerald and Finnane. "They tell you something and they stick to it. They let the basketball people do their jobs. 'Run TMC' doesn't happen without Jim Fitzgerald and Dan Finnane. It was struggling there for a while, and they were the ones who really turned it around."If theres one story thats made the rounds in the Warriorscommunity about Fitzgerald and Finnane, its the one about their generosityupon exiting the game. After selling the team to Cohan in 1994 for 140 million, Fitzgerald andFinnane gave quite a parting gift to employees . According to several employeesat the time, every employee received a handsome parting gift, some in excessof six figures.One former Warriors employee told me he had been with theWarriors for a few months when Fitzgerald and Finnane sold to Cohan and that hereceived a check in the thousands.Disproportionate, was the way he remembered it.That same employee remembers a palpable buzz and then commotion in the offices as employees opened the envelopes with the checks in them.He always put the needs and concerns of others ahead ofhimself and was one of the most giving and caring individuals I have ever met,Attles said. He enriched the lives of his friends, employees and acquaintancesand for that we are forever grateful. My thoughts and prayers go out to hisentire family during this difficult time.Mullin said he specifically remembered how Fitzgerald and Finnane included Meuli in the Warriors' family -- even after Meuli had sold the team after owning it for 20-plus years. Meuli, who passed in 2010, was often in the front row of Warriors games well into the mid-2000s."I always thought that was cool," Mullin said. "They took care of Franklin. There was great trust there and respect there. It wasn't 'This is now mine.' To me, both Jim (Fitzgerald) and Dan (Finnane) are two great, first-class guys."
Despite struggling from 3-point distance for most of game, the Warriors managed to grind out a 119-108 victory over the 76ers Monday at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
All five starters scored in double figures, with Kevin Durant putting in a game-high 27 points to lead the way. Klay Thompson had 21 points, Stephen Curry 19, Zaza Pachulia 16 and Draymond Green 14.
Curry had the toughest night of all, shooting 7-of-23 from the field -- and 0-of-11 from deep, the worst such performance of his career. The Warriors as a team were 6-of-29 from deep.
The Warriors (50-9) shot 44.9 percent overall, only the third time this season they’ve been below 45 percent in back-to-back games. They shot 42.0 percent in beating Brooklyn last Saturday night.
Six players scored in double figures for the 76ers (22-37), with forward Dario Saric totaling a team-high 21 points.
Green and Pachulia share the honors, with Pachulia becoming an offensive force and Green being such a dynamo that even his turnovers couldn’t negate his positive impact.
Green’s line: 14 points (5-of-10 from the field, 1-of-3 from deep, 3-of-6 from the line), 11 assists, six rebounds and five steals. He played 37 minutes and finished plus-22.
Pachulia’s line: 16 points (5-of-5 from the field, 6-of-7 from the line), five rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal. He played 19 minutes and finished plus-1.
After a Robert Covington 3-point pulled Philadelphia within three, 59-56, with 11:19 left in the third quarter, the Warriors came back with a 10-0 run -- requiring only 79 seconds -- to go up 69-59 with 10:00 remaining.
The 76ers got no closer than seven over the remainder of the game.
Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L hand contusion) was listed as probable and upgraded to available 90 minutes before tipoff. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the NBA Development League.
76ers: G Jerryd Bayless (L wrist surgery), C Andrew Bogut (personal), C Joel Embiid (L knee contusion), F Ben Simmons (R foot fracture) and C/F Tiago Splitter (R calf strain) were listed as out.
The Warriors return to action Tuesday, when they visit Verizon Center to face the Washington Wizards. Tipoff is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. Pacific.
Andrew Bogut is reportedly searching for a new home.
The big man agreed to a buyout with the 76ers on Monday and is considering four teams for his next destination, according to The Vertical's Shams Charania.
Cleveland, Houston, San Antonio and Boston are reportedly in the running for Bogut's services.
On Sunday, ESPN's Tim MacMahon reported that two of his sources said they expect Bogut to sign with the Cavs.
Last week, Dallas traded Bogut to Philadelphia.
The Warriors are eligible to re-sign Bogut, but Golden State is looking to add a guard in the coming days.