Monta Ellis waits too long -- again


Monta Ellis waits too long -- again

Lets tie up some loose ends from Utahs 88-87 win over theWarriors on Saturday night. Thats five straight losses for the Warriors andtheyre now 2-6.Final play: I thought as usual MontaEllis waited too long to try to do something on a games final possession. The Warriorshad 11 seconds and Ellis dribbled for much of it.RECAP: Monta misses buzzer-beater in Warriors' 88-87 loss to Jazz
He puts himself in a position where he doesnt leavehimself an extra second or two to improvise, which is a big part of his game.Instead, he puts pressure on himself to make something happen quickly andalso without giving himself extra time for a change of direction, hesitation or even a pass to a teammate.Under different circumstances, he did the same thing acouple of times last year against Indiana and Sacramento, but it didnt matterbecause he knocked down shots (both jumpers, not drives like Saturday) withtime expiring.Warriors coach Mark Jackson talked about Utah having a foulto give which it did and that Ellis might have thought the Jazz would foulhim with five seconds or so. And then once Ellis realized they werent going tofoul, he had to go. But Jackson also said he had no issue with theshot.Ellis said the fact Utah had a foul to give meant nothingand didnt affect his decision-making.Bottom line is Ellis, when he winds down the game clock toofar, has to be perfect, because its clear his goal is for the shot to go in asthe buzzer is sounding. But hes got to give his team a chance for an offensiverebound or quick foul after a miss that may leave you with a second or two,down two or three.Or once again, this needs to be stressed, give himself theopportunity to make a pass. After all, didnt I just read a stat about how heshad seven or more assists in a game now for six straight games most sinceBaron Davis did it?Now, yes, that gets us into the area of who do you want himpassing it to with Curry out with the game on the line and thats a biggertopic for another day. Anyway, next time Ellis has to go sooner. Hop before the shot: Yes, Al Jeffersonmight have bunny-hopped on his mid-range jumper with 33 seconds left. Butthats not going to be called, nor should it be. And you know what? If DavidLees tip-in comes before the buzzer the refs probably dont call the over theback, either. Thompson at crunch time: Rookie KlayThompson got some important crunch-time minutes at the expense of DorellWright -- and it didnt work out very well. Thompson, who went 1-for-6 from thefloor, didnt connect with Ellis on what should have been a pretty easytwo-on-one score with just under two minutes left. Then he committed an offensive foul with 1:05 remaining andthe Warriors up two. In other words, two turnovers in the final two minutes. On the bench at the time was Dorell Wright, who has beenshooting terribly, but according to Jackson has been doing otherthings. One of them is not turning the ball over. Wright hasnt beenmaking much of an impact, thats true. But he hasnt been a nuisance onoffense, either. Hes committed a remarkably low two turnovers in 233 minutesthis season. After the game, Jackson offered no regrets about playingThompson down the stretch, saying Thompson played well just made a mistake ortwo when it counted. Lee gets the minutes: David Lee played41-plus minutes against the Jazz, by far more than anyone else on the floor on either team. Monta Ellis, who led the league in minutes coming into the game(39.8 mpg.) played 36 and change. He was the next highest.Nobody on the Jazz played more than 34 minutes. Lee finishedwith 13 points and 15 rebounds, but in the games context those numbers arentimpressive. With one team shooting 39.5 percent (Utah) and the other shooting41.4 percent, there were plenty of rebounds to get.

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr out indefinitely with chronic pain

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr out indefinitely with chronic pain

PORTLAND -- Still suffering with chronic pain after multiple back surgeries nearly two years ago, Warriors coach Steve Kerr will step away from his duties for an indefinite period.

Kerr made the announcement Sunday afternoon, one day after he was unable to attend Game 3 of the first-round playoff series against the Trail Blazers at Moda Center. He conceded the possibility he could miss the rest of the postseason.

“This past week for whatever reason, things got worse,” Kerr said from the team hotel. “My symptoms got worse. And I was not able to coach. The last few days have been difficult.

“With things getting worse, I just made the decision I couldn’t coach. As of now, I’m consulting with my doctors. I’m hoping for some improvement. If I can get some improvement, I’ll get back on the sidelines. But I’m not going to do that unless I know I can help the team.”

Assistant coach Mike Brown, a three-time NBA head coach who guided the Warriors to a 119-113 comeback win in Game 3, will serve as acting head coach during Kerr’s absence and will be on the sideline for Game 4 Monday night.

No matter what happens, Kerr said, he plans to assist in game preparation and remain involved with players and staff for the duration of the postseason.

“At this point in the season, we all have a feel for our team,” Kerr said. “Early in the season, it probably wouldn’t have been that way. It’s great that we’ve had the year together. It’s great that Mike has coached in this league 10 years and has coached in The Finals. He knows what he’s doing. The team is in great hands regardless.”

While spending Game 3 at the team hotel Saturday watching the game with his son, Nick, Kerr pointed out that some of the substitutions he thought should be made were, in fact, made seconds after crossing his mind.

Kerr said he did feel somewhat better Sunday than he did on Friday and Saturday.

Kerr has been coping with severe side effects since the summer of 2015. Though he has said his back was improved by the surgeries, a spinal leak has resulted in frequent headaches and neck pain.

Two days into training camp in September, barely a month after his second surgery in seven weeks, he took an indefinite leave of absence, returning Jan. 22, 2016 and coaching the final 39 regular-season games as well as the postseason.

But after laboring through 2016 training camp and the regular season -- often wearing a pain patch on the back of his neck -- the chronic anguish never went away, being by turns uncomfortable and excruciating. Kerr made it through only the first two games of the postseason.

He clearly was in discomfort during Game 2 Wednesday night at Oracle Arena and felt no better after an off-day Thursday. During his post-practice news conference Friday, before the team flight from Oakland to Portland, Kerr constantly shifted his body and grabbed his head.

Kerr was unable join the team for shootaround Saturday morning, and four hours later the Warriors announced Kerr would not attend Game 3.

“This is not going to be a case where I’m coaching one night and not coaching the next,” Kerr said. “I’m not going to do that to our team, to our staff.

“We’re hoping that over the next week or two, whatever it is, I can sort of make a definitive realization or deduction, or just feel it, that I’m going to do this or not.”

Kerr has tried various pain-killing drugs, as well as medicinal marijuana, in hopes of alleviating his chronic pain. Nothing so far has provided consistent relief, and some medications that have helped were offset by nausea and other side effects.

Kerr is in the third year of a five-year contract signed in May 2014. His 207-39 regular-season record is the best in NBA history by any coach over a three-year span.

Blazers big man Nurkic ruled out for Game 4 vs Warriors

Blazers big man Nurkic ruled out for Game 4 vs Warriors

Programming note: Warriors-Blazers Game 4 coverage starts Monday night at 6:30pm with Warriors Pregame Live on NBC Sports Bay Area, and streaming live right here.

The Warriors hold a 3-0 lead in their first-round playoff series with the Blazers after Saturday's 119-113 win. 

For the first time this series, the Warriors went up against Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic, who returned from a leg fracture. Nurkic started and played a total of 16:40 in Game 3. 

In his return, the "Bosnian Beast" was a non-factor on offense. He only scored two points, but did grab 11 rebounds. And his return was even shorter than expected. 

Blazers head coach Terry Stotts ruled Nurkic out for Game 4. 

Nurkic averaged 15.2 points and 10.4 rebounds per game in 20 games for the Blazers after Portland acquired him in a trade with the Nuggets.