Warriors

Warriors focus: Kent Bazemore

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Warriors focus: Kent Bazemore

Editor's note: This is the second of seven individual player analysis, focusing on new Warriors' faces.

The Warriors have made plenty of changes since the end ofthe 2011-12 season. They will likely have four first-year players on their rostercome the start of the season, and they also acquired veterans Jarrett Jack andCarl Landry.Center Andrew Bogut came to the Warriors in March, but hesa newcomer, too, if you factor in that he still hasnt played a game for theteam yet. With training camp set to begin in early October, lets begin ourplayer-by-player analysis of the Warriors new players.Kent Bazemore, 6-foot-5, 195 pounds, shootingguard.Whats most important to know about Bazemore -- at thispoint, anyway -- is that hes currently occupying the 15th roster spot, which isthe maximum number allowed in the NBA.Whats also very pertinent is that his contract isntguaranteed. That means that while the Warriors like Bazemore, there are noassurances hell be around for the whole season.Yes, theres a scenario in which Bazemore could spend theentire 2012-13 with the Warriors or their D-League affiliate, which is prettymuch what Chris Wright did last season.But Bazemore is also a candidate to be waived at any time --which is the nature of a non-guarantee.What Bazemore has going for him is that he has the potentialto be the teams best defender on point guards and shooting guards. That alonecould make him worth keeping around.Its not a secret that Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, theWarriors projected starting backcourt, do not excel at the defensive end.Jack will help on thatend of the floor, but its not like hes a defensive stopper.Charles Jenkins is certainly improving defensively, butwere still talking about a stocky, 6-foot-3-ish sized player who isntoff-the-charts athletically.Bazemore, a left-hander, is a long 6-foot-5, and hesathletic. On top of that, hes got a defensive foundation, he has goodinstincts and he anticipates well. Bazemore comes into the league afterwinning back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year awards in the ColonialAthletic Association his junior and senior seasons.Bazemore defended well for the Warriors in the Las VegasSummer League. He also averaged 1.8 blocks per game, including one game inwhich he had seven. Bazemores length sometimes gives smaller playersdifficulty, and in Vegas, he showed an ability to block shots from behind intransition.There were times this summer when Bazemore and Jenkinsplayed together -- with Bazemore defending the point guard and Jenkins theshooting guard.When you look at the Warriors roster -- top to bottom -- youcould see how a player such as Bazemore could stick around. After all, he hasthe ability to do something very important -- defending guards -- better thananyone else on the roster.You can see why the Warriors like that and like Bazemore,too. Then again, the Warriors liked Wright and Jeremy Lin and even DominicMcGuire -- and none of those players are still with the team.Still, Bazemore has a shot with the Warriors. Lets see whathappens.

New Clippers advisor Jerry West: 'I did not want to leave' Warriors

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USATSI

New Clippers advisor Jerry West: 'I did not want to leave' Warriors

After six years as an Executive Board member for the Warriors, Jerry West unexpectedly departed in June. He took an advisory role with the division rival Clippers.

It was a curious move for the 79-year-old. Leave the defending champs for a team in turmoil?

On Monday, the former Lakers legend and Hall of Famer talked about his move south an interview with The Athletic's Tim Kawakami.

"Frankly it was very sad, OK? It really was. A place where I thought that if I was going to work another year or if somebody wanted me to work another year, I thought I could contribute; I did not want to leave. I did not want to leave. I was very happy there.

But those things happen sometimes. Obviously to be around a bunch of players that were as together as any I’ve seen and I think more importantly the talent that was on that team and to see the joy. There’s a lot of joy there. I think those are the kind of environments where people really prosper."

West then explains why he's not with the Warriors anymore.

"It was time for me to leave. I’m in Los Angeles again. For me, I’ll have a chance to go in the office a little bit and watch some of the people that have been hired, to watch our coaches coach. I’ve often said I’ve done some crazy things in my life because of the timing and maybe the timing was right."

West won one NBA title as a player and has eight as an executive, including two with the Warriors.

The Clippers, along with West, get their first look at the defending champion Warriors on Monday, Oct. 30 in Los Angeles.

Steve Kerr: 'The most impressive thing with our guys...'

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AP

Steve Kerr: 'The most impressive thing with our guys...'

It's been a pretty good run for the Warriors over the last three seasons:

- 2014-15 = 67-15, NBA champions
- 2015-16 = 73-9, NBA runner-up
- 2016-17 = 67-15, NBA champions

And Steve Kerr is on record saying that his team will be even better in 2017-18.

The Warriors' head coach recently sat down with Scott Ostler of The San Francisco Chronicle and explained why he isn't concerned about the upcoming campaign.

“Ultimately, we’re in a great spot. Our guys are happy, they’re doing their thing. There’s no need for much drama. The most impressive thing with our guys is, people talk about Pat Riley’s book and what he calls ‘the disease of me,’ where you win a championship and all of a sudden, everyone wants a bigger role, more money, whatever.

“I think that is sort of human nature, to want more. But our guys I think, have a genuine awareness that they’re getting all that through winning. More is coming their way individually as a result of the team’s success.

"It takes a really mature perspective to feel that way.”

Nothing exemplifies Kerr's thoughts more than Kevin Durant's financial sacrifice.

[REWIND: Myers: 'Unequivocally' there is no Iguodala or Livingston without Durant]

He could have earned about $34.7 million yet agreed to a $25 million salary for next season to help the Warriors retain Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston.

Golden State replaced Ian Clark, James Michael McAdoo and Matt Barnes with Nick Young, Omri Casspi and Jordan Bell.

Otherwise, everybody else is back.

"We have a lot of momentum, and our guys have a comfort level, and obviously, we’re loaded with talent," Kerr told The Chronicle. "It’s fun to think about the season, think about where we can get better, players we can add. That’s what I spend a lot of my time down here doing, just thinking about what’s next for us.

“But I don’t worry at all about us being successful; I don’t worry about anybody’s ego getting in the way.”

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller