Warriors players to host their own training camp

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Warriors players to host their own training camp

Sept. 9, 2011

STEINMETZ ARCHIVE
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Matt Steinmetz
CSNBayArea.com

Hardcore fans will turn their attention next week to the Impact Basketball Competitive Training Series in Las Vegas, where dozens of the league's players will convene for organized workouts and regular pick-up games. Word has gotten out that Warriors guard Stephen Curry and forwards Dorell Wright and David Lee will show up to play in what's being referred to as the "Lockout League."More important to Warriors fans, though, is what's happening after the first week of play at Impact. That's when a number of Warriors' players -- "basically everyone under contract," according to Wright -- will begin working out together, lockout or not.It's kind of like the Warriors' version of the 49ers' "Camp Alex."
"We're trying to get something going," Wright said. "Now's the time to try to put something together, get some chemistry, see each other and work out."The players have organized the long weekend among themselves. Because of the NBA lockout, the Warriors' coaching staff and front office can't have any contact with players. Lee said he's handling hotel logistics, and Curry is handling gathering up the players.Wright and Lee said they expect Curry, Monta Ellis, Lou Amundson, Ekpe Udoh, Jeremy Lin, Klay Thompson, Jeremy Tyler and Charles Jenkins to participate. The idea came about during Curry's wedding in late July, with Lee and Ellis in attendance.The entire group is expected to be in Las Vegas by Thursday, and they'll spend the long weekend together. Lee said wives, girlfriends and families are also expected to accompany the players."More than anything it's just us all getting together," Lee said. "We're just trying to stay on the same page. Normally, at this time we're getting ready back in Oakland, and so we're just doing that somewhere else. It's about getting to know the new guys and getting everyone excited about the season -- whenever the season is. It will be good workouts and good competition."Of course, this whole thing was borne out of the NBA lockout, which very much looks like it could delay -- or cancel -- the beginning of training camps in October as well as the exhibition season. If that happens - and training camps are shortened -- Wright figures his team could benefit from getting together early."We want to show we're serious," Wright said. "We've got potential. We know we've got to improve and that's what we want to do. We want to be good. I came from a winning environment (in Miami) and we want that here. We want to win."Andris Biedrins and Reggie Williams are not expected to be in Vegas. Biedrins has begun his personalized training program in Latvia and is expected in the U.S. in October, according to Bill Duffy, his agent. Lee said he's been in touch with Biedrins all summer and that Biedrins said he was going to try to make it but it didn't look promising.Williams, a restricted free agent, is in Spain, where he has signed a contrat to play for Caja Laboral Vitoria of the Spanish ACB League.Curry will be testing out his right ankle in competition for the first time since he had offseason surgery in late May. Curry missed eight games last season because of the ankle and had surgery to strengthen it after the season. He's been rehabbing up to this point.

Does Draymond still care about DPOY after another ring? 'At this point...'

Does Draymond still care about DPOY after another ring? 'At this point...'

OAKLAND -- Even though Draymond Green still would like to win the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award, winning a championship with the Warriors has quenched much of thirst for the honor.

“I don’t really care that much anymore,” Green said after participating in the JaVale McGee Celebrity softball game Saturday at the Oakland Coliseum benefitting the Jug Life Foundation, promoting a healthy lifestyle around water consumption.

“I cared before,” Green added. “But we won the NBA championship now. I don’t care about what happened in the regular season any more at this point. I think I would have cared if I found out in Round 1 or Round 2 (of the playoffs).

“But at this point . . . I don’t even care any more.”

This is in marked contrast to what Green expressed early in the regular season, when he acknowledged the DPOY award is the only individual award he actively cared to win.

As recently as two months ago, in discussing his defensive performance in a season during which he made numerous memorable plays, including some game-saving defensive stands, Green let his words speak on his behalf.

“It is the best defensive season I’ve had, because I’ve continued to grow,” he said at the end of the regular season. “When I look at the last couple years, I think each year I got better defensively. And I think this year I’ve gotten better. So I do think it’s my best season, defensively -- but just not numbers-wise. The numbers are up a little bit more. But I actually feel better about what I’ve done on the defensive end than I have in any other year.”

Winning a championship apparently has an impact on the significance of individual awards.

A finalist for the award for which he finished second in each of the past two seasons, Green said Saturday that his plan is to leave for New York on Sunday and be in attendance when the awards are presented Monday night.

The other finalists for the award are Jazz center Rudy Gobert and Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard, who won it the last two seasons.

All three players will be among those at Basketball City at Pier 36 in New York for the inaugural telecast of the NBA Awards on TNT.

Durant fires back at salty Thunder fans with custom cupcake hat

Durant fires back at salty Thunder fans with custom cupcake hat

Kevin Durant didn't forget about the taunts.

In February, when Durant returned to Oklahoma City for the first time as a member of the Warriors, Thunder fans heckled him with t-shirts featuring cupcakes, a reference to Durant being soft for joining the 73-win Warriors.

On Saturday, the cupcake graphic made a return with one slight change.

Durant, playing in JaVale McGee's JugLife Celebrity Softball game at the Oakland Coliseum on Saturday, showed up to the stadium wearing a cupcake hat. But instead of a cheery on top, a championship ring was superimposed on top of the cupcake.

So Durant, an NBA champion, got the last laugh.