Jackson: No concern over Bogut's back spasms
Andre Iguodala's stat line Friday in Shanghai: 14 assists, seven rebounds, five steals and four points in 29 minutes. (AP)
Programming note: Catch a replay of today's Warriors-Lakers game from Shanghai tonight at 7:30 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area
Returning to the Bay Area after sweeping two games from the Los Angeles Lakers during the Global Games tour of China, the Warriors are simultaneously encouraged and concerned in the wake of the experience.
Center Andrew Bogut, after pronouncing himself healthy and trying to shake the "injury-prone’’ label, played only three minutes in Friday’s 115-89 win before leaving with what Warriors officials described as back spasms.
"There is no concern," head coach Mark Jackson said. "He had back spasms and we're just playing it safe. He actually waved me off and wanted to stay in the ballgame, but we have plenty of time to make sure he's healthy and whole, and that's important closing out this preseason."
Bogut is not new to back spasms; he has had a couple bouts with them since joining the Warriors in March 2012. Whenever the back flares up, though, it just makes sense to monitor it closely.
[RELATED: Warriors run by Lakers in Shanghai]
There will be an update in the coming days, as the team is expected to return to the Bay Area on Saturday. There is a measure of relief, to be sure, that the big man was not forced from the game with ankle problems.
Forward Harrison Barnes, who last played on Oct. 7, continues to sit out with inflammation in his left foot. Coach Mark Jackson has said Barnes’ absence is mostly precautionary, but at the very least it puts him behind in the three-man competition for two starting spots.
At worst, the problem could linger into the season, which begins Oct. 30, and disrupt what on paper is a solid eight-man rotation.
Backup point guard Toney Douglas did not play on Friday, listed in the box score as being out with lower leg inflammation. How severe this is – and whether it nags into next week – remains uncertain.
Backup center Jermaine O’Neal, who sat out the Oct. 8 game at Utah with back spasms but returned to play 16 minutes on Tuesday, also did not play on Friday. His absence was attributed to "coach’s decision,’’ which may be as simple as not wanting to push a player who turned 35 last Sunday.
Big guard Andre Iguodala, who left for China hoping to establish better on-court chemistry with his new teammates, made substantial progress. He shined in Friday’s win, submitting the kind of stat line only great all-around players tend to deliver: 14 assists, seven rebounds, five steals and 4 points in 29 minutes.
[RELATED: Box score -- Warriors 115, Lakers 89]
Of particular note were the 14 assists, a clear sign that Iguodala is finding open teammates and getting them the ball at the right place and time. That’s one way to build chemistry.
Klay Thompson scored a game-high 25 points on Friday. He offered a fair and accurate assessment of his success.
"I got lucky tonight,’’ he said in the post-game news conference. "I got a lot of wide-open shots from my teammates’ creating. That’s when basketball is easy. You just catch and shoot. You don’t even have to think about it.’’
The primary creator was Iguodala, whose presence running the offense, allowed point guard Stephen Curry to spend precious minutes playing off the ball.
Power forward David Lee continues to look sleek and smooth. He’s healthy, running the floor well and developing a nice interior relationship with Bogut. He scored 47 points in the two wins over the Lakers.
Draymond Green shot with confidence and accuracy, dropping in four of five 3-point attempts on Friday. It wouldn’t be good for the team if he made a habit of shooting threes, but every one he makes gives opponents one more thing to worry about.