Warriors-Hornets: What to watch for


Warriors-Hornets: What to watch for

The Warriors will try to avoid equaling a season-high five-game losing streak when they play the Hornets in New Orleans on Wednesday.It is the first game of a back-to-back for the Warriors. Theyll play at Houston on Thursday.Here are some things to watch for during Wednesdays Warriors-Hornets game:Establish consistency: Since trading Monta Ellis to the Milwaukee Bucks last week, the Warriors have been all over the map with their effort level.The Warriors played back-to-back solid games against Sacramento and the Boston Celtics, coming away with a win against the Kings. But the Warriors looked brutal last Friday in a loss to Milwaukee. They came back and played a very good game in Utah, losing to the Jazz in overtime, but then played one of their worst first halves of the season against the Timberwolves on Monday.The Warriors have 23 games remaining in a season in which the goals and priorities have changed. The Warriors are no longer realistic about their playoff chances and instead are focusing on the future.Still, Warriors coach Mark Jacksons task is to make sure his team stays conscientious for the rest of the season and puts in a good effort game in and game out.Find out about Jenkins: Rookie point guard Charles Jenkins has been playing a little bit more since Ellis has been traded with mixed results.Jenkins has been backing up Nate Robinson, but it isnt clear whether or not hes ready for a full-time backup role or more minutes.Look for Jackson to use the remaining 23 games to try to figure out whether Jenkins is in the teams long-term plans or not.Biedrins status: Center Andris Biedrins has become the forgotten man on the Warriors this season. Quite simply, he started the season poorly with his play and he hasnt gotten any better since.He is listed as questionable for the game against the Hornets because of a strained groin. But in terms of the big picture, the question is whether or not Biedrins can show any positive signs in the last part of the season that he might be able to carry over to 2012-13.

Jazz hold off Clippers in Game 5, take 3-2 series lead

Jazz hold off Clippers in Game 5, take 3-2 series lead


LOS ANGELES -- Gordon Hayward scored 27 points, Utah controlled the paint, and the Jazz beat the Los Angeles Clippers 96-92 on Tuesday night to take a 3-2 lead in their first-round playoff series.

Hayward returned after missing most of Utah's win in Game 4 because of food poisoning that caused him to lose weight and energy.

Chris Paul's 3-pointer drew the Clippers within two with 5 seconds left. After George Hill hit two free throws, Paul struggled getting the ball under control near the sideline and couldn't do anything as time expired.

The Jazz made five 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, including three by Rodney Hood, who finished with 16 points.

Paul led the Clippers with 28 points and J.J. Redick added 26 with injured star Blake Griffin watching from the bench, his right foot encased in a black walking boot.

The Jazz can clinch the series with a victory in Game 6 on Friday night in Salt Lake City.

The Clippers rallied from an 11-point deficit early in the fourth to tie the game. They made 12 of 15 free throws in the final period, but never managed to take the lead.

Paul and Hayward were called for double technical fouls with 40 seconds to go. Paul had already pushed Hayward in the back after they got tied up scrambling for a rebound in front of Utah's bench. Hayward made both shots for a 90-85 lead.

Joe Johnson's step back jumper extended Utah's lead to 92-87.

Neither team shot well, but the Jazz were better at most everything else. They owned a 34-28 edge in the paint, and the team that has done so has won each of the first five games in the best-of-7 series.

Utah outscored the Clippers on second-chance and fast-break baskets.

Utah took the game's first double-digit lead early in the fourth on a 3-pointer by Hood that made it 69-58.

The Clippers clawed back with an 11-0 run featuring five straight free throws by Redick and two consecutive 3-pointers from Paul that tied the game at 69-all.

Suddenly, the quiet crowd was on its feet cheering and Utah called time out.

The Jazz regrouped to take a 77-69 lead. They ran off eight straight, capped by Haywood's 3-pointer after the Clippers' defense shut down Hill inside and forced him to pass out to the perimeter with the shot clock winding down.

Jazz: Neither team has won by more than eight points so far in the series.

Clippers: Griffin's injured big right toe needs further evaluation before it's decided whether he'll require surgery. ... G Austin Rivers played 17 minutes in his return from a strained left hamstring. He was 0 of 4 and had two points. ... They fell to 1-11 all-time in Game 5 of a playoff series that was tied 2-2.


Blazers GM: Former Warriors big man will not play for Portland next year

Blazers GM: Former Warriors big man will not play for Portland next year

Festus Ezeli will not be back with the Blazers next season, Portland GM Neil Olshey said on Tuesday.

Last summer -- after the Warriors let Ezeli walk in free agency following the addition of Kevin Durant -- he signed a 2-year contract worth just over $15 million.

But Year 2 was essentially a club option with a $1 million buyout.

A knee injury prevented Ezeli from ever suiting up for the Blazers this season.

He underwent cadaver ligament replacement surgery in early March.

The Warriors drafted Ezeli 30th overall in 2012.

Over 46 games (13 starts) with Golden State in 2015-16, he averaged 7.0 points and 5.6 rebounds over 16.7 minutes per contest.