Warriors focus: Carl Landry

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Warriors focus: Carl Landry

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the final installment in a seven-part series that spotlights the seven new Warriors.
Part 1: Harrison BarnesPart 2: Kent Bazemore
Part 3: Andrew Bogut
Part 4: Festus Ezeli
Part 5: Draymond Green
Part 6: Jarrett Jack

If you want to get picky, you could say that Carl Landry isnt really a perfect fit for the Warriors. After all, what the Warriors need most from their interior players particularly from their substitute big players is rebounding and defense.Those arent exactly the first two things you think of when you think about Landrys game.Nevertheless, its tough to criticize the signing of Landry. Darn near impossibly, frankly. Hes a proven scorer off the bench and a player known for his competitiveness. No, hes not a defensive stopper or a big-time rebounder, but what Landry does give the Warriors is quality depth at a position where they havent had much.Last season Warriors coach Mark Jackson had to use all sorts of players in the frontcourt, including Dominic McGuire, Mickell Gladness, Mikki Moore, Keith Benson and Earl Barron.So without a doubt Landry represents an upgrade from last season. Question is: Where do his minutes come from?David Lee figures to get the lions share of playing time at power forward. Lee has averaged 36 and 37 minutes per game, respectively, over the past two seasons with Golden State.That doesnt leave a whole lot of room for Landry, a player who has averaged 25 minutes per game, himself, during the course of his five-year career.It seems apparent that Landry will get a good portion of minutes when coach Mark Jackson elects to go with his small lineup. If theres one thing Jackson showed a season ago, its that hes not afraid to use Lee at center particularly late in games.A Landry-Lee frontcourt would certainly have some size deficiencies and defensive shortcomings, but that frontcourt could also be useful if the Warriors are trying to bring home a win down the stretch of a close game.Landry and Lee both have career free-throw percentages of .777. So when you consider Andrew Bogut is a 54.7 percent foul shooter for his career, you can see why Jackson might go small late in games.But there are other reasons for Landry and Lee to play together, and the most important is that by doing so the Warriors will limit Boguts minutes. With Bogut coming off season-ending ankle injury last season, it only makes sense to monitor his minutes closely in 2011-12.On top of that, there is instability at the backup five position with Andris Biedrins, whose game has gone missing in recent years, and Festus Ezeli, an unproven rookie.When Landry plays hell give the Warriors an aggressive scorer on the inside. Hes more of a scorer than a back-to-the-basket power forward, though he can do some damage in the right matchup down there.Landry does his best work from the mid-post area, where has developed a nice mid-range shot to go a long with a quick first step at least by power forward standards.The one thing Landry has done throughout his career is get to the foul line. Last season for the Hornets, Landry averaged 4.5 free throw attempts in just 24 minutes.That could come in handy when you consider that Landry will likely be playing a lot early in the second quarters of games assuming hes coming off the bench. If nothing else, Landrys assertiveness could serve to get the Warriors in the penalty more quickly than they have in the past.As for Landrys rebounding, its not that hes a bad rebounder, hes just not a great one call him average in that department. Landry averaged five rebounds per game last season in 24 minutes.Landry also isnt much of a shot-blocker, which means when he and Lee play together theyll have trouble protecting the rim.What Landry does bring to the table is a willingness to compete and someone whos going to play hard night it and night out. Because he gives the Warriors a different kind of dimension inside, its possible seeing him having a nice role.No, Landry isnt perfect. But its easy to see that he should make the Warriors better.

Steve Kerr named Western Conference Coach of the Month

Steve Kerr named Western Conference Coach of the Month

Golden State Warriors Head Coach Steve Kerr has been named NBA Western Conference Coach of the Month for games played in October/November, the league announced today.

Kerr led the Warriors to a league-best 16-2 (.889) record during the season’s opening month, including an NBA-best 12-game win streak.

During the month, Golden State led the league in scoring (117.6 points per game), assists (31.1), field goal percentage (.502) and point differential (+12.7) while posting a 9-1 mark away from home. The Warriors compiled a streak of 10 consecutive games with at least 30 assists, tied for the second-longest 30-assist streak in NBA history, and set a franchise record with 47 helpers in a 43-point win over the Lakers on November 23.

With a win at Boston on November 18, Kerr earned his 150th career regular-season coaching victory, becoming the fastest coach to reach 150 regular-season wins in NBA history by doing so in his 176th game, besting the mark previously set by Avery Johnson (191 games). Golden State’s 12-game win streak tied for the third-longest streak in franchise history, the top four of which have all come during Kerr’s tenure in the last three seasons (28, 16, 12, 12).

The award is the fourth career Coach of the Month honor for Kerr, which equals the amount of monthly honors won by all other coaches in Warriors history since the NBA began giving out the award in 1982-83. Kerr has previously won the award in January 2015, March 2015 and March 2016, giving him at least one monthly accolade in each of his three seasons at the helm. In the opening month last season, Luke Walton won the award as the Warriors Interim Head Coach while Kerr was on a leave of absence.

Cleveland Cavaliers Head Coach Tyronn Lue earned Coach of the Month honors in the Eastern Conference.

Golden State Warriors media services
 

Rewind: Warriors commit sin in Kerr's offense, fail to close out Rockets

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USATI

Rewind: Warriors commit sin in Kerr's offense, fail to close out Rockets

OAKLAND – The Warriors, possessors of the NBA’s best offense, never really found their rhythm Thursday night against one of the league’s softest defenses, and the disappointment was not limited to seeing the end of a winning streak.

No, the Warriors didn’t much like what they put on the floor in a 132-127 double-overtime loss to Houston. They engaged in a bit of self-flagellation and, quite frankly, they deserved it.

“All in all, it was our execution,” coach Steve Kerr said. “We weren’t moving and cutting like we normally do. I just felt like our ball movement went away and as a result we just kind of fell into their switching and kind of went one-on-one and took difficult shots. We have to do better with that.”

Which may be why Draymond Green, in a scorching dissection of the Warriors’ performance, spared no one.

[POOLE: Draymond sarcastically praises refs after frustrating loss to Rockets]

“We didn’t shoot well, and a part of that not shooting well was we were just standing there,” he began. “And it turned into the Steph Curry Show, the Kevin Durant Show. And that’s not who we are. We move the ball – and then it turns into the Steph Curry Show, and then it turns into the Kevin Durant Show. And they’re getting great shots.

“It’s not their fault that I was standing at the top of the key, and the other guys were standing on the weak side watching them play. I would do what they were doing, too, if everybody else is just standing there watching. That falls on us. We were over there watching.”

No aspect was more maddening for the Warriors than the two overtimes, during which they shot 25 percent (5-of-20) – including an utterly galling 9.1 percent in the second and decisive five-minute period.

They failed to get a field goal before Curry fouled out with 3:25 left, and got only one as he watched from the bench. Houston focused on Durant, whose efforts to carry the Warriors were in vain, as he was 0-of-4 in the second OT.

“Our offense wasn’t moving,” Green said. “(Durant) took all tough shots, and it wasn’t his fault. Everybody else stood and watched him play. I don’t think he was necessarily tired. I think every shot he took in overtime was contested, because we were all standing there.”

That’s a sin in Kerr’s offense, which relies on movement by the players and the ball. Instead, the offense seemed to deflate. Joining Green and Durant on the floor for most of the finish were Klay Thompson, Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston.

They managed four points in five minutes, with Green accounting for all four.

Truthfully, though, the Warriors were sagging all night. Though Durant started well enough, making 8-of-14 through three quarters (he was 4-of-14 from the fourth quarter on), he got little help. Thompson was 4-of-20. Curry was 9-of-22.

“We didn’t move the ball very well and we didn’t execute down the stretch,” Kerr explained.

Houston was superior almost across the board, from shooting percentage to rebounding and from points in the paint to second-chance points, which is why they led for the vast majority of the game.

James Harden was fabulous on offense, pretty much orchestrating the action en route to a triple double (29 points, 15 rebounds, 13 assists). Ryan Anderson scored 29 points.

The Rockets were particularly effective grabbing offensive rebounds and turning them into points.

“We have to do a better job, come in and grab rebounds,” said Durant, who pulled 13. “If we had grabbed a couple of more, we would have won this game, but life has to move on.”

With Durant scoring 39 points and Green (20 points, 15 rebounds, nine assists) trying to will them to victory, the Warriors hung around. But when Curry and Thompson combine for 13-of-42 shooting, 7-of-26 beyond the arc, the Warriors usually are in trouble.

“We had our moments especially in the first overtime,” Kerr said. “We had a real cushion. I think we were up four (119-115, 4:11 left) and I thought we let it slip away at that point when we had every opportunity to finish them off.”

The Warriors instead were outscored 17-8 over the final nine minutes of action. That has to hurt when you’re rich in offensive talent, in a system designed to ring up points. All too often on this night, the Warriors seemed to forget about that.