Warriors' Summer League review: Festus Ezeli


Warriors' Summer League review: Festus Ezeli

Festus Ezeli
- 611255lbs Center
- 2011-12Stats: 10.1 PPG (53.9 FG), 5.9 RPG, 2.0 BPG (junior season at Vanderbilt)
- 2012Summer League Stats: 4.4 PPG (36.4 FG), 4.0 RPG, 2.0 BPG

FestusEzeli actually took a step back statistically between his sophomore and juniorseasons at Vanderbilt. He averaged 13.0 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.6 bpg in 23.5 mpg inhis second campaign as a Commodore. In his final season in Nashville, his numbers dropped across theboard to 10.1 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 2.0 bpg in a fairly consistent 23.2 mpg. Yet theWarriors took him with the final 1st round pick because he is big, active, andraw.
RELATED: Warriors Summer League breakdown
In fivesummer league games, Ezeli showed he was all three of those things, but notmuch else (yet). Ezeli averaged fewer points and rebounds than the 2011-12 Japan leagueMVP, Justin Burrell. Luckily for the Vandy product, the three inches he has onBurrell cannot be taught, whereas Ezeli can hope to pick up some of Burrellspolish.The 611center was a career 56.2 FG shooter in college, but only converted 36.4 ofhis attempts from the field in summer league. In college, his main source ofoffense was finishing around the rim on putbacks or drive and dishopportunities. So it makes sense that his game would suffer some in the moreme-orientated, less structured summer league environment.Thatexcuse does not hold for rebounding though. The big man collected four boards agame (5th on his own team). Extrapolating that out, he averaged 7.9 board per40 minutes which is 2.6 rebounds under the league average for NBA centers lastseason, according to Hoopdata.com. For the time he was on the floor, hisdefensive rebound rate was 15.9 and his total rebound rate was 11.0, whichare both drops from his 17.4 DRB and 15.3 TRB as a junior at Vandy.One bigpositive out of Ezeli was his defense. He averaged two blocks a game andconsistently challenged shots around the rim. He fulfilled the big and activepart of his billing along with the raw.Ezelinever played more than 23.5 minutes per game in college and barely cracked 20in summer league, so it is reasonable to expect that he will have a limitedrole on the 2012-13 Warriors roster as he continues to develop his offensive game.He is active, big and has six fouls, though, so dont be surprised to see himget some floor time this season.

Kerr's message to Warriors fans who want more pick-and-roll for Curry

Kerr's message to Warriors fans who want more pick-and-roll for Curry

Are you one of the people who thinks the Warriors need to put Steph Curry in more pick-and-roll/ball screen situations? 

If you are, that's OK.

Steve Kerr -- when asked about Draymond Green's role this past season -- talked about how Golden State uses Curry.

"Before the season started, I told our staff that I thought Draymond was gonna have the biggest adjustment to make," Kerr said on the TK Show on Wednesday. "And he made it really easily. And I think a big part of that is the fact that he's a point-forward at his core offensively.

"He handles the ball and he's our leading assist guy. And all of a sudden he had another shooter and another weapon to work with. And I thought that was really important that we established early that Draymond was still gonna be an integral part of the offense.

"I was worried about that -- I thought because KD was gonna need the ball and Steph already had the ball -- I was worried that Draymond would be a little left out of the offense and that would affect his overall game and his defense.

"In fact, it's one of the things -- I think important for our fans to understand -- because one of the things I get all the time is, 'Why don't you just put Steph in a screen-and-roll every play? Why don't you give him the ball every play?' And I think what people who follow our team closely understand is that the number of playmakers we have on our team is what makes us who we are ... drive and kick and passing and moving -- it keeps everybody engaged."

For the third year in a row, the Warriors ranked nearly the bottom of the league in pick-and-rolls.

Yet, that didn't stop Golden State from posting the best offensive rating (113.2) in NBA history.

It's also important to remember that following the Warriors' loss to the Cavs on Christmas Day -- when Curry scored 15 points and took just 11 shots -- Kerr acknowledged that he needs to put Curry in a better position to succeed.

[REWIND: Steph Curry 'definitely' wants Warriors to run more pick-and-roll]

"But for the people who say, 'Just give it to Steph every time and let him go,' well now you're alienating Draymond, you're alienating Andre, you're alienating Shaun. You're basically telling them to be spotup 3-point shooters," Kerr continued. "And now I think you're losing a lot emotionally from what makes the team tick, and you're taking away the energy that Draymond gets from being a playmaker and getting 8 or 10 assists.

"So that's the balance we always try to find with our group -- get everybody involved and energized."

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

Reports: Spurs shopping LaMarcus Aldridge

Reports: Spurs shopping LaMarcus Aldridge

It appears the LaMarcus Aldridge in San Antonio could be nearing its end.

The Spurs are reportedly talking to several teams about a potential trade, according to multiple reports.

In the summer of 2015, Aldridge signed a 4-year deal worth over $84 million.

He can opt out of his deal next summer.

The 5-time All-Star will turn 32 years old in July.

His 17.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game this season were his lowest totals since his rookie campaign.

In Games 2 through 4 of the Western Conference Finals against the Warriors, he averaged 11.3 points and 5.3 rebounds and shot less than 39 percent from the field.

Aldridge's former team -- the Portland Trail Blazers -- would be interested in acquiring Aldridge, according to Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller