Warriors notebook: Tyler acquisition a stunner

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Warriors notebook: Tyler acquisition a stunner

June 23, 2011

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Matt Steinmetz
CSNBayArea.com

OAKLAND -- Well, the selection of Klay Thompson by the Warriors wasn't much of a surprise. But acquiring the rights to center Jeremy Tyler was.The Warriors, with the help of owner Joe Lacob's wallet, acquired Tyler from the Charlotte Bobcats, who had selected him at No. 39. The Warriors paid 2 million for those rights."This is the kind of aggressive move we're pleased to be able to make," Warriors executive vice president Larry Riley said. "That's a credit to ownership. We're trying to improve this team in any way we can. It will be a developmental process. I don't know how quickly he'll be able to perform in the NBA. But he's an NBA talent. There will be an onus on him to go to work."Tyler's story is among the most fascinating of any of the draftees. He averaged 28.7 points and 12 rebounds as junior at San Diego High in California, and committed to the University of Louisville. But he elected to skip his senior season and instead play professionally in Israel.
He played just 10 games in the Israeli League and then left the team for personal reasons. The last team he played for was the Tokyo Apache in the Basketball Japan League for the 2010-11 season."He is a person of size both height and bulk," Riley said. "He's played a limited amount of basketball in terms of the professional game but he's young."Monta talk: Warriors executive vice president Larry Riley was at the podium for about two minutes after the team picked Klay Thompson before the inevitable question was asked.NEWS: Warriors take Klay Thompson with No. 11 pick
Did the selection of Thompson, a big shooting guard, mean that Monta Ellis was more likely to be traded?Said Riley: "This in no way affects the motivation to trade any player."Well, that settles that -- for about the next few hours anyway or until the next Monta Ellis trade rumor surfaces.Jenkins at No. 44: The Warriors selected Hofstra shooting guard Charles Jenkins with the No. 44 pick -- no doubt in large part because one of the Warriors scouts, Speedy Claxton, also played at Hofstra and was quite familiar with him.Claxton played for the Warriors during the 2003-04 season and part of the 2004-05 season before he was traded to the New Orleans Hornets. He has been a scout for the Warriors for the past two seasons, working primarily on the East Coast.Jenkins broke Claxton's scoring records at Hofstra. Jenkins is a combo guard who can score from the perimeter and get to the rim. He shot 42 percent from 3-point range last season as a senior.

Kerr clarifies Cousins' lack of NBA All-Star Game minutes

Kerr clarifies Cousins' lack of NBA All-Star Game minutes

OAKLAND -- Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Wednesday that the limited minutes allotted to former Kings center DeMarcus Cousins in the All-Star Game Sunday was unrelated to a pending trade.

Cousins played only two minutes -- the shortest stint by any All-Star since Connie Hawkins in 1971 -- because that was the big man’s wish.

“I asked every guy before the game started how much they wanted to play,” said Kerr, who coached the Western Conference All-Stars for the second time in three seasons. “He told me he wanted to play two minutes. He was serious. He said he was banged up. It had nothing to do with (a trade).”

After six-plus seasons in Sacramento, Cousins was traded to New Orleans shortly after the All-Star Game, with the official announcement coming Monday.

Kerr initially thought Cousins was requesting to be limited to two minutes per half. When Kerr and assistant coach Mike Brown conveyed that plan, Cousins was quick to clarify.

“He said, ‘No, no: two minutes total,’” Kerr recalled.

When Kerr pointed out that Cousins actually played two minutes, 24 seconds, the newest Pelican flashed a sense of humor.

“I went over? By 24 seconds?” Cousins said. “That should be a fine for you, coach.”

Warriors big men Pachulia, West close to return

Warriors big men Pachulia, West close to return

OAKLAND -- The Warriors reconvened Wednesday and received good news, going through a light scrimmage that for the first time in weeks included centers Zaza Pachulia and David West.

The better news for the Warriors is that both were upgraded to questionable and could return as soon as Thursday night, when they face the Clippers at Oracle Arena.

“I would say there’s a good chance both of them would play tomorrow,” coach Steve Kerr said. “We’ll see.”

Pachulia has missed the last eight games after straining his right rotator cuff on Jan. 29 at Portland.

“The pain is gone,” Pachulia told CSNBayArea.com. “I can’t say I’ll be cleared, but there is no more pain.”

Pachulia is expected to reclaim his starting role despite Kerr’s acknowledging that JaVale McGee has been “fantastic” while starting the last eight games.

“I haven’t decided yet,” Kerr said. “I’ve got to make that decision. I want to make sure first that (Pachulia) is healthy. And it depends, too, on what happens with David. Is David healthy? Are they both playing? There’s kind of a domino effect on all of this stuff.

“I would anticipate that, ultimately, Zaza will be back starting. I liked that whole rotation. JaVale has helped us dramatically, and he’ll be playing a role. It’s a center-by-committee situation. But right away, we’ll see how we play it.”

West has missed the last 14 games with a non-displaced fracture in his left thumb, sustained Jan. 18 against Oklahoma City.

West was to undergo an X-ray late Wednesday, after which it was anticipated he would receive a clean slate.

The only players that did not scrimmage are All-Stars Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson. All four were given an extra day off in the wake of their participation in All-Star Weekend in New Orleans.

“Just being in New Orleans for those four days, there’s no rest whatsoever,” Kerr said. “Those are the guys who played the most minutes. The All-Star break is such a great time to recharge.”