Jackson, Curry formulating playing time plan


Jackson, Curry formulating playing time plan

OAKLAND Looks like Warriors coach Mark Jackson and pointguard Stephen Curry have some things to work out when it comes to Currysplaying time in the preseason.Jackson said after Saturdays practice that Curry wouldlikely sit out either Sundays preseason opener against the Lakers in Fresno orMondays game against the Utah Jazz at Oracle Arena.But Curry later expressed to reporters that hed like toplay in both games. What Jackson and Curry do agree on is they will be talkingabout it and figuring it out.Im going to think about it, talk to Steph about it,Jackson said. Im going to think about it and make the right decision as faras thats concerned. I really dont want to work him back-to-back nights. Illmake a decision as to whether he plays tomorrow or Monday.Curry, who missed most of last season with ankle issues, wasmedically cleared for all basketball-related activities three weeks ago. Sincetraining camp started on Tuesday, Curry has been participating in most of theteams drills and scrimmaging.I would like to play a little bit in each game, kind ofbuild up my endurance and work through some soreness -- if I have any soreness,Curry said. But that will be something well talk about.Curry hasnt played since March 11, and admitted to beingexcited for his first game competition in months. After Saturdays practice,Curry said he felt like a rookie because hes antsy to get some game actionagainst the Lakers.But well see if that happens. Jackson indicated he wasntlikely to play Curry both nights.I would lean toward one of them being off, Jackson said.Being that we had a day off Friday, and we got after it pretty good today. So,rather than making it three days in a row of getting after it, cooler headswill prevail.As for who will start at small forward and center againstthe Lakers, Jacksons wasnt saying. Hell be choosing among rookie HarrisonBarnes, Brandon Rush and Richard Jefferson at the small forward spot.And with Andrew Bogut still not ready, it will come down torookie Festus Ezeli or Andris Biedrins at center.Its really no big deal who starts tomorrow, Jackson said.

Warriors as healthy as ever while playing waiting game for next opponent

Warriors as healthy as ever while playing waiting game for next opponent

OAKLAND -- Now that the Warriors have gone through a full-squad scrimmage for the first time in three weeks, there is only one issue to be resolved before they get back to the business of the playoffs.

Whom to play? And when?

As of Friday afternoon, the Warriors had no idea of either.

They will face the winner of the Clippers-Jazz first-round series, in which Utah took a 3-2 lead into Game 6 Friday night in Salt Lake City.

“Why are we talking about Utah like the Clippers are done?” Draymond Green wondered after fielding several Jazz-related questions after scrimmaging.

Well, because the Jazz won Games 4 and 5 and is favored to win Game 6 at home. If they win, they’ll come into Oracle Arena Sunday afternoon to meet the Warriors in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals.

If the Clippers win Game 6 to even the series, those teams will meet for Game 7 Sunday in Los Angeles, with the winner advancing to face the Warriors in Game 1 of the conference semifinals next Tuesday night in Oakland.

In any case, the Warriors appear about as healthy has they have been at any time since February.

Veteran guard Shaun Livingston, out with a finger/hand injury since Game 1 (April 16) of the first-round series against Portland, participated in the scrimmage, as did veteran forward Matt Barnes, who last played on April 8, when he sustained a bone bruise atop his right foot.

“They practiced today and they even went through the scrimmage,” acting head coach Mike Brown said. “But we’ll wait for our training staff to clear them, after they see how they feel today and (Saturday).”

In short, if swelling is minimal, both will be available for Game 1, regardless of when.

So, too, will Kevin Durant. After a strained left calf kept him out of Games 2 and 3 against the Trail Blazers, he started and played 20 minutes in decisive Game 4 without any ill effects.

Nothing changed during the scrimmage Friday.

“It felt great out there,” he said. “Nothing bothered me. It was definitely good. I’m just trying to hopefully put that injury stuff behind.”

Durant conceded that he continues to receive treatment and ice, but mostly to minimize potential swelling.

Durant makes plea to NBA officials: 'S--- talking is part of the game'

Durant makes plea to NBA officials: 'S--- talking is part of the game'

OAKLAND -- Kevin Durant wishes more NBA officials had a better grasp of the language of the game.

They don’t seem to understand that “trash talk” almost always is little more than an act in which healthy emotions are released. It’s as much of the game on the court as pointing out a bad haircut or a fashion error in the locker room.

“I was raised that if you weren’t talking on the court, then something (bad) is going on,” Durant said after Warriors practice on Friday.

Durant caught a glimpse of the chatter earlier this week between former Oklahoma City teammate Russell Westbrook and Houston guard Patrick Beverley in decisive Game 5 of the Thunder-Rockets series and was disappointed when the officials slapped each with a technical foul.

“I was like, ‘Man, just play on. It’s a part of the game,’” Durant said.

Though Durant himself is not a premier trash-talker, he plays alongside one in fellow forward Draymond Green.

“That’s why we started playing, to talk a little s--- here and there,” said Durant, who grew up in the Washington D.C. area. “Draymond is really good at it. There are a lot of guys in the league that are good. More guys are quiet now than before.

“But s--- talking is a part of the game. I love it. It’s fun when you’re on the same team as a guy that does it. And then, when you’re playing against it, it’s even better because it brings the best out of you.”

For Durant, there always will be a place for trash talk on the court. Not only did he experience it while growing up but he also was indoctrinated in the practice from the moment he arrived in the NBA in 2007.

He recalls, with fondness, being targeted as a rookie by Kevin Garnett and a few other Celtics.

“When I came into the league, that’s when the Celtics had just got together,” Durant said. “Paul Pierce and KG and those guys talked bad to me as a rookie. I was 19. And they talked so bad to me. And I was talking right back. It was just a fun exchange. That’s what basketball is about.”

Now if only he could get officials to realize this.