Updated: Free agent forwards remaining for Warriors

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Updated: Free agent forwards remaining for Warriors

Much of the heavy lifting is over for the Warriors frontoffice this offseason. They added four players on draft day in June, thenacquired veteran point guard Jarrett Jack in a three-team trade.Its no secret their big move came back in March, when theyacquired center Andrew Bogut from Milwaukee in a deal for Monta Ellis and EkpeUdoh.Their roster currently sits at 12 players, although that isexcluding restricted free agent Brandon Rush, whom the team hopes to re-sign.Conventional wisdom suggests the Warriors are still lookingto acquire another player most likely a power forward to back up DavidLee.Right now, the Warriors have Andris Biedrins, Jeremy Tylerand rookies Festus Ezeli and Draymond Green backing up the two big positions. Hereare some available free agents the Warriors are likely considering:Lou Amundson: The Warriors would probablylike to find a player more impactful than Amundson, but the reality is they mayhave to settle for an energy-type player.
Amundson is limited offensively, but hell give you a littlesomething when it comes to defense, shot-blocking and rebounding. As a 12-to-15-minute per game player, his track record is proven.
Matt Barnes: Yes, hes more of a smallforward than a power forward, but we all know around these parts that Barnesplayed his fair share of four back in the We Believe years under DonNelson.Hes certainly undersized for the four, but then again,Barnes is never afraid to make up for it in the feistiness category. Stillseems like a reach.
Carl Landry: What the Warriors need mostup front is defense and rebounding.
Those arent exactly Landrys callingcards. Hes more of an offensive player than defensive player, which doesntquite fit what Golden State is looking for.By the same token, having Landry as your first big man offthe bench would be a significant improvement over where the team is right now.Question is, can the Warriors get him a price they can afford?
Kenyon Martin: Of all the players on thislist, nobody would seem to be a better fit from a basketball standpoint thanMartin. He is tough, defensive-minded and has veteran know-how.The issue with Martin, however, is whether the Warriorswould be comfortable bringing him into their locker room. He has a strongpersonality, and if you factor in the 100 playoff games he has under his belt,his voice becomes even more forceful on a team as young and win-starved asGolden State.
Dominic McGuire: He is an unrestrictedfree agent, but the Warriors have not ruled out bringing McGuire back. Nor hasMcGuire ruled out coming back.In McGuires case, one thing might not have anything to dowith the other. The Warriors could conceivably bring back McGuire and signanother player on this list.

Troy Murphy: He does fit the role of rebounder, but the Warriors need defense and perhaps shot-blocking every bit as much, and that's where Murphy gets off the bus.In short, the Warriors need more of a dirty-work guy here.
Jermaine ONeal: He has missed most ofthe past two seasons with injury, but ONeal is not calling it a career. Hesstill only 33, but then again, he has been a pro since he was 18.If ONeal has anything left, you could absolutely see Lacoband the Warriors sniffing around. Then again, if he has anything left ONealwill have options. But ONeal is (sort of) the frontcourt equivalent of BrandonRoy.

Anthony Tolliver: He thrived in DonNelsons system as a stretch four, but Tolliver couldnt follow through afterhis breakout 2009-10. Tolliver plays hard and isnt a bad rebounder, and he cancertainly make 3s. But the Warriors would seem to need someone more physicalhere than Tolliver.

Shelden Williams: If youre compiling alist of Least Sexy NBA Names Williams would probably be on it. He was the No.5 pick in 2006, and hes barely a role player.Still, when Williams plays he has a track record ofrebounding and fouling. And those skills fit nicely if youre talking about aguy making in the 1 million or so range.

Whether Brown or Kerr coach, Warriors sticking to same blueprint

Whether Brown or Kerr coach, Warriors sticking to same blueprint

OAKLAND -- For the first time since he joined the coaching staff last summer, Mike Brown on Wednesday morning arrived at the Warriors facility a man in charge.

As acting head coach, he would decide when practice started and when it ended, and conduct proceedings in between.

The general activity was not much different for anyone else, though, as it continues to become evident that everything the Warriors do for the foreseeable future will be a Brown-Kerr, or Kerr-Brown, production.

“Steve is going to be a part of this process the whole time,” Brown said after practice. “Almost before I do anything, I’m going to consult with him. The only time I won’t consult with him is probably during a game.”

Since Kerr’s announcement last Sunday that he was taking an indefinite leave to attend to personal health issues, Brown has been wielding the clipboard. He actually coached Game 3 against Portland last Saturday, in Kerr’s absence, before knowing in advance he’d also coach Game 4 Monday night.

Brown is 2-0, with the Game 4 win clinching a Warriors sweep of the Trail Blazers. Yet Brown is quick to remind anyone that he is following the plan laid out by Kerr. The two exchanged texts Tuesday and, according to Brown, “spoke at length” after the game between the Jazz and the Clippers -- one of which will face the Warriors in the next round.

Though the Warriors are operating under a different head coach, all indications are the atmosphere around the team remains stable and relatively unchanged.

“Obviously it’s different personalities, but when you make it about the players, when you make it about winning, all that other stuff really doesn’t matter,” Kevin Durant said. “He coaches us. He coaches the game of basketball and he does it very well. Our whole coaching staff does the same thing.

“When it’s about basketball, it’s not about trying to have authority over us. He’s just coaching us. He’s just coaching us up. He’s just telling us the proper way to do things on the basketball court. It’s pretty simple when you try to do that. Then it’s on us to try to execute.”

Execution has gone well, particularly over the last six quarters of the series against Portland. The Warriors wiped out a 16-point deficit in the second half to win Game 3, and then rolled to a 35-9 start in Game 4 before coasting to the closeout victory.

Brown was on the sideline in Game 4, with Kerr watching the game from the locker room.

It’s fairly apparent, though, that everyone involved feels a heightened sense of accountability and ownership.

“Mike has had a pretty big voice throughout the whole season,” Durant said. “He’s been a head coach before, understands what it takes to be a head coach. And the coaching staff is just so smart, and they empower each other.

“Anybody, if you’re around us on a day-to-day basis, anybody can tell that they work well as a group. Coach Kerr does a great job. He spearheads it all by empowering everybody, from the coaches to the players.”

After sweeping Blazers, Warriors relishing some needed down time

After sweeping Blazers, Warriors relishing some needed down time

OAKLAND -- After arriving in Oakland in the wee hours Tuesday morning, the Warriors took the day off, went through a light practice Wednesday and will take another day off Thursday.

Slackers, eh?

Not really, when the next game is at least four days away.

The semi-lax scheduling isn’t the decision of acting head coach Mike Brown. It’s not even the decision of head coach Steve Kerr, who was not at practice Wednesday and remains out indefinitely. It’s a common sense call that was made between the two men, with players and staffers on board.

“If you can sweep every series,” Kevin Durant said after practice, “then that’ll be perfect.”

This is one of the perks of sweeping a first-round opponent. By eliminating the Trail Blazers in four games and with their next opponent undetermined, the Warriors are able to balance work and rest.

“With this group here,” Brown said, “the continuity that the nucleus has and how intelligent the guys are, with the big-time veterans we’ve brought in, we feel that rest for their bodies and mentally (are) more important than coming in here and having practice on a daily basis.”

They also have a couple guys recovering from injuries. Forward Matt Barnes (right foot/ankle bone bruise) has been out two weeks, and guard Shaun Livingston (right index finger sprain/hand contusion) has missed the past nine days. Both, however, are expected to be available for the next series.

The soonest that would be is Sunday against Utah, which owns a 3-2 series lead over the Clippers and can close it out Friday in Salt Lake City. If the Clippers win and push the series to seven games, the Warriors would then open against the Clippers-Jazz winner on May 2.

Meanwhile, the Warriors have no choice but to prepare for both, with plenty of time to do so.