Warriors-Rockets: What to watch for


Warriors-Rockets: What to watch for

Programming note: Warriors-Rockets coverage begins tonight at 4:30pm with Warriors Pregame Live, and the tip-off follows at 5 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.

TheWarriors snapped a four-game losing streak with a victory over the Hornets inNew Orleans on Wednesday night. They complete their mini two-game road trip onThursday against the Houston Rockets.Houstoncurrently holds the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference at25-22, and they are a half-game ahead of ninth-place Utah.RELATED: NBA conference standings
Hereare some things to watch for during Thursdays Warriors-Rockets game:Make3s: Despite being shorthanded without Andrew Bogut and Stephen Curry,the Warriors have been able to stay in games when theyre making shots from beyondthe arc.TheWarriors went 14-for-29 from 3-point range in their win over the Hornets onWednesday, with Klay Thompson and Brandon Rush each making four from beyond thearc.TheWarriors will likely struggle in the rebounding department through the final 22games, but they can mitigate that disadvantage by hitting from longrange.Rookiecontributions: It appears as if Warriors coach Mark Jackson is goingto start leaning a little more on the teams first-year players. Thompson, ofcourse, is already starting at shooting guard and playing big minutes now thatMonta Ellis is gone.ButJeremy Tyler and Charles Jenkins are not getting rotation minutes, and theyregoing to be counted on to provide a contribution. Tyler played 16 minutes againstthe Hornets and will probably get as many if not more minutes on Thursdayvs. the Rockets because the Warriors are going to need more size against thatteam.Robinsonunder control: Point guard Nate Robinson played a nice floor game againstthe Hornets, and they need more of that. Robinson had eight points and 10assists in 29 minutes against New Orleans.Mostimportant Robinson had just two turnovers. When Robinson limits his bad shotsand keeps his turnovers under control he is usually a positive for GoldenState.Its when hes a volume shooter and doesnt take care of the ball that he hurtsthe team.

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.