Mark Jackson talks all things Warriors

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Mark Jackson talks all things Warriors

Warriors coach Mark Jackson met with the media on Wednesdayin advance of training camp, which begins on Tuesday. Jackson addressed avariety of subjects.Here is some of what Jackson said:On feeling more pressure this year to win:Jackson: For me, whatever I do theres pressure.Theres always pressure on myself to be better and to be efficient. So I dont Pressure is my mindset. I dont care who Im coaching, the pressure is alwaysgoing to be to win. Certainly we have a better basketball team. I dont runfrom it; I embrace it.On who will start at small forward: HarrisonBarnes, Brandon Rush or Richard Jefferson:Jackson: I really dont know. Ultimately, I thinkyou roll the ball out there. You let those guys decide who starts. At the endof the day, its important it doesnt mean whos the best player, its whatmakes us better as a team. Ill make that decision going forward and watchingthem as a unit. But right now I dont have an answer for you who my startingsmall forward is.On whether the Warriors can still be a running teamwith David Lee at power forward and Andrew Bogut at center:Jackson: I would argue that David Lee is a greatrunner. I would say we have a great rebounder in (Andrew) Bogut and four guys who canrun above average for their position. I would say were better to run becausewere a better rebounding team. Each guy rebounds their position well.I would say running more and when you have the weapons thatwe have offensively, the best way to attack a defense is when theyre not set.Were not going to be a slow-down offensive team.On Andrew Boguts status:Jackson: Hopefully hes ready Day 1. He makes usa better basketball team. Without him, it hurts us. Having one of the top fivecenters certainly makes us better. Thats really not important (if Bogut isntready for the start of training camp Tuesday). In the big picture, we need himwhen were playing for real. If hes healthy come Tuesday, great. Hesworking out and hes doing all the strength and conditioning with the trainerand coaches as he can. Hes getting closer and closer.On the competition at backup center between AndrisBiedrins and Festus Ezeli:Jackson: We will let that play out in trainingcamp. Im impressed with Festus and what hes done since we drafted him. Hesbeen very good in the summer league, very good in workouts. Hes been here allsummer. He works his tail off and gotten better. Hes made a statement by beinghere. That hasnt gone unnoticed.I would certainly love to have Andrew Bogut in the startingfive but I feel comfortable with what Festus can do. Hell have to earn it, buthes done everything Ive asked him to do and he wants it. I dont have toguess whether hes committed to this thing, whether he buys in or whether hessaving some chips. Hes all in. Its good to see because thats what you buildwinning teams around guys that have that attitude.On whether hell be more creative with this yearsteam than he was with last years team:Jackson: I think when you look on the floor, theweapons we have, you dont really have to be creative. Those guys can score. Ifyou look at the great coaches or the great teams, theres nothing creativeabout throwing the ball to Michael Jordan on the foul line or Kobe on the wing Thats not creative. Thats just some bad boys getting it done when it mattersmost.It puts us in a better position because we certainly haveweapons and weve added depth. Now, coming off the bench, theres nodrop-off.We have guys at every position now that on any given nightcan outplay the best in the world. If Klay Thompson gets 25 points on Im notgoing to name anybody its not a shock. If Stephen Curry outplays the bestpoint guard in the world, its not a shock. Same thing with our center, powerforward and whoever our small forward is going to be. We can play with the bestin the world at every position.

Iguodala making loud free agency case to Warriors in Durant's absence

Iguodala making loud free agency case to Warriors in Durant's absence

OAKLAND -- It was with impeccable timing, for the Warriors and for Andre Iguodala, that he has spent recent weeks summoning all the best parts of his game.

He has been a disruptive force on defense, as usual, but at a time when the Warriors needed something extra at both ends of the court, he is providing an abundance of offensive electricity.

Iguodala came through once more on Sunday as the Warriors suffocated Memphis in the fourth quarter to take a 106-94 win at Oracle Arena. Though the team’s Sixth Man again scored at an efficient clip -- 20 points on eight shot attempts -- his ability to energize teammates from Stephen Curry to Draymond Green to Klay Thompson and beyond is no less significant.

“We feed off his energy when we see him get a rebound or get a steal, push up the court, make a crazy inside-out dribble and finish at the rim, knock down threes or play-make for other guys,” Curry said. “It’s fun to watch.”

Iguodala’s rise has coincided with the loss of Kevin Durant, the team’s leading scorer and someone who plays the same position. With Durant out, Iguodala has taken on additional playing time, which can be risky for someone in his 13th season.

“He’s been fantastic,” coach Steve Kerr said. “He looks incredibly athletic, bouncy and fresh. He’s a pro. The guy just knows how to take care of his body. He’s done a great job of stepping up in KD’s absence and recognizing what we need from him.”

The Warriors have played 13 games since Durant went down with a knee injury, and Iguodala has played in 11 of them, shooting 44 percent from deep and 61.8 percent overall. The man who shot 62.3 percent from the line in his first three seasons as a Warrior is at 70.1 percent this season. Leadership also is part of the package.

“I try to read (what’s needed) when I get into the game,” Iguodala said. “Try to bring that energy. And, more than anything, lead by example. Not say too much. Just show it.”

When Iguodala is sprinting up and down the court, rising and dunking on one end, stripping balls away on the other, the Warriors are appreciably better team. If the Curry-Durant-Green-Thompson foursome is the engine, Iguodala is the turbo boost.

“We’re a completely different team when he’s as aggressive as he’s been of late,” Green said. “When he’s moving the way he’s been moving -- he’s beating everybody down the floor -- it makes us a completely different team. “

Igoudala’s minutes have spiked, from 23 per game in November, to 26 in December, to 27 in January and February, to almost 29 in March.

“I don’t want to run his minutes up too much,” Kerr said. “But if he has to play a couple extra minutes while KD is out, then that’s fine.”

It’s fine with Iguodala and it’s paying off for the Warriors.

Iguodala hopes it pays off, literally, when he becomes a free agent in July.

Though free agents entering their 14th season don’t often command big money, he is making a very impressive audition for the Warriors or any team that might be interested in his services.

Iguodala has made it clear he’d prefer to stay in the Bay Area, and at this rate the Warriors may have to find the necessary coins to bring him back.

Instant Replay: Warriors finish strong, grind past Grizzlies

Instant Replay: Warriors finish strong, grind past Grizzlies

BOX SCORE

OAKLAND -- There was plenty of tension and more than a few pulse-stopping moments, but the Warriors found a way to win their seventh consecutive game.

The Warriors’ 106-94 victory Sunday over the admirably recalcitrant Memphis Grizzlies was a work in persistence and overcome moments in which the worst of their work was on full display before a sellout crowd at Oracle Arena.

Klay Thompson scored 31 points to lead the offense. Stephen Curry had 21 points and a game-high 11 assists, Andre Iguodala had 20 and Matt Barnes finished with 10 as the Warriors evened the season series with the Grizzlies at 2-2.

The Warriors (59-14) fought off numerous Memphis rallies but turned up the defense in the fourth quarter, holding the Grizzlies to 13 points on 5-of-25 (20 percent) shooting over the final 12 minutes.

The Warriors offset 18 turnovers, giving the Grizzlies 16 point, by shooting 54.2 percent from the field.

Mike Conley scored 29 points to lead Memphis, which fell to 40-33.

STANDOUT PERFORMER

As good as the Splash Brothers were, and they were superb, it was Iguodala’s play at both ends that made a major difference.

Iguodala’s line: 20 points (7-of-8 shooting from the field, 2-of-3 from beyond the arc, 4-of-5 from the line), a team-high-tying seven rebounds, four assists, two steals and a blocked shot. He played 32 minutes and was plus-9 for the game.

TURNING POINT

After the Grizzlies pulled into an 81-81 tie with 25.2 left in the third quarter, the Warriors responded with a 15-5 run to go up 96-86 on a 3-pointer by Curry with 4:57 remaining.

Memphis got no closer than nine in the final minutes.

INJURY UPDATE

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

Grizzlies: C Marc Gasol (L foot strain) was listed as questionable and declared out prior to tipoff. F Chandler Parsons (L knee rehab) was listed as out. C Deyonta Davis and F Jarell Martin are on assignment with Iowa of the D-League.

WHAT’S NEXT

The Warriors travel Monday to Houston, where on Tuesday night they face the Rockets at Toyota Center. Tipoff is scheduled for 5:05 p.m.