For Warriors, is there a deal there for Deng?


For Warriors, is there a deal there for Deng?

LuolDengs name has surfaced in trade rumors, and no team has been more linked tothe Chicago small forward than the Warriors. The Bulls are apparentlyinterested in trading Deng, and the Warriors could be in the market for a smallforward.Butacquiring Deng wont be easy for the Warriors, and according to separatesources in the league the teams have not had dialogue about a possibletrade.AcquiringDeng would most certainly cost the Warriors the No. 7 pick, but its the kindof move Warriors general manager Bob Myers has said he would be open to onethat would yield Golden State a veteran-type player.The mostsignificant obstacle to acquiring Deng would be that the Warriors would have tosend approximately 13 million in salary back to Chicago or about what Dengwill earn in 2012-13.Thatwould make Richard Jefferson, who will make 10.2 million in 2012-13, or AndrisBiedrins, who is set to make 9 million, the most likely candidate to be in adeal for Deng. Question is, would the Bulls be willing to trade Deng, who ledthe league in minutes last season, in a move for the No. 7 pick and one ofthose two?Remember,were talking about the Bulls here, a team that very much considers itself atitle contender as long as Derrick Rose is on the roster. And were talkingabout Deng, a player whom coach Tom Thibodeau relies on as an important andconsistent defender. Last we checked, defense is pretty importantthere.Jeffersonis five years older than Deng, and is on the downside of his career. Biedrinshas two more years remaining on his deal, and he has been ineffectual in eachof the past two seasons.Deng, 27,has been the Bulls mainstay at small forward over the course of his eight-yearcareer. Despite a poor shooting season in 2011-12, he is considered a very goodmid-range shooter. But what he excels at is defense, which is the Bullscalling card.Its noteasy to see the Bulls trading Deng because they would likely get worse in theshort term, and thats not what their organizational thinking would seem to beas long as they have Rose. Its also unlikely that the No. 7 pick would be ableto contribute immediately for a team the caliber of the Bulls.Deng wasnamed an NBA All-star this past season, and also was all-NBA defensive secondteam. Deng shot just 41.2 percent from the field and averaged 15.3 points pergame. That is five percentage points below his career mark and about two pointsoff his scoring average over the past two years.Dengplayed some of 2011-12 with torn ligaments in his left wrist, and hes informedteam officials in Chicago that he will postpone surgery on it until after theOlympics are over in August.Thatdecision will likely mean Deng will miss at least the first month of theregular season.And thatis one more thing to consider. Do the Warriors want to acquire a player whowill likely miss the early part of the season with injury, when remaininghealthy is going to be such a key to their upcoming season?StephenCurry and Andrew Bogut, the teams starting point guard and center,respectively, are both coming off injuries. Curry missed most of 2011-12 with asprained ankle, and there are questions about whether he can stayhealthy.Ditto forBogut, who has struggled with injury in each of the past four seasons, missing54 games in 2011-12, missing 17 games in 2010-11, missing 13 games in 2009-10and missing 46 games in 2008-09.

Curry blames weatherman for career-worst 0-for-11 from 3-point range

Curry blames weatherman for career-worst 0-for-11 from 3-point range

In the wake of a 119-108 Warriors win over the 76ers Monday night in Philadelphia, Stephen Curry had a ready explanation for his 0-of-11 shooting 3-point distance.

He didn’t properly account for the change in weather.

“The weatherman said it’s like a low-pressure system that was coming in (and) I forgot to adjust to the thickness of the air,” he told reporters at Wells Fargo Center.

Curry’s comment may open to interpretation, but it was clear his sense of humor remained intact even after a career-worst shooting night beyond the arc.

He wasn’t the only Warrior finding it difficult to score from deep. Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and Draymond Green combined to go 5-of-20. The Warriors were 6-of-29 from deep, their second-lowest total of the season.

“It’s weird,” he said. “Not to discredit anything they did. The first half we had a lot of open looks that didn’t go in. Klay made a couple down the stretch. KD made one. Draymond made one from the corner.

“Other than that we still took really good shots that didn’t go in. But for us to still have moxie to withstand that and still pretty much have the lead the whole game and allow our defense to get us a win tonight was kind of our M.O.”

Given that Curry owns the single-game record for triples (13) as well as the single-season record (402), it was most alarming that he couldn’t find at least one. And he had opportunities.

“It happens but you have to try and find other ways to impact the game,” he said. “I was trying to get to the paint a little bit more and just try to make plays. One thing is I don’t get down on myself. Obviously, that’s why I got 11 of them up. I still have confidence the next one is going in and that will stay the same tomorrow.”

The Warriors face the Wizards Tuesday in Washington. In Curry’s last appearance at the Verizon Center, last Feb. 3, he went for 51 points. He was 11-of-15 from deep.

“What I love about Steph is he went 0-11 tonight from three but you wouldn’t know it if you looked at his face,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “He never loses confidence; he never hangs his head. It is a sign of a guy with ultimate confidence in his ability and the awareness that it is one of those nights.

“He is likely to come out tomorrow and make about seven in a row at some point. So that’s what I love about Steph. He keeps playing.”

Draymond hits personal reset button, sets tone in win over 76ers

Draymond hits personal reset button, sets tone in win over 76ers

In the hours before tipoff Monday night, Warriors coach Steve Kerr fielded questions about Draymond Green, who not only played well beneath his standard in the previous game but also exhibited a couple flashes of temper, including one directed at Kerr.

“He had one of those nights; it just wasn’t his night,” Kerr told reporters in Philadelphia. “Things didn’t go his way. He was frustrated. I’m very confident that tonight he’ll bounce back.”

Yes, he did. One game after allowing his emotions to undermine the best of his game, Green pushed his personal reset button and drove the Warriors to 119-108 victory over the 76ers.

It was a rather predictable performance insofar as Green generally responds to poor games by making a statement of his strength.Or, should we say, strengths.

Though the numbers -- 14 points, 11 assists, six rebounds, five steals, a plus-22 over 37 minutes -- tell a significant story, Green’s impact, as usual, extended beyond statistics. He set a strong positive tone, and when he does that it can offset subpar performances by his teammates.

“We’ve got a lot of guys who can play,” Kerr said afterward. “So on a night like tonight, where Steph (Curry) doesn’t have it going, we’ve got plenty of other guys who can score and make plays and a lot of them came through.

“I thought Draymond was really the player of the game. He just brought incredible energy and set a good tone right from the beginning of the game.”

On a night when Stephen Curry’s shot abandoned him (0-of-11 from deep, 7-of-23 overall), Green scrambled to provide whatever was needed, when it was needed. He was particularly adept at setting his teammates, as evidenced by his game-high assists total.

“One guy can’t do it every night,” Green told reporters. “Two guys can’t do it every night. Sometimes, it’s got to be a complete team effort. Tonight, it was that.”

The Warriors shot 41.7 percent through the first three quarters and 44.9 for the game. The Sixers battled them to a virtual standoff on the glass. The Warriors got by mostly with free throws (33-of-39) and Green’s effort and smarts.

That Green is a difference-maker in unconventional ways, often beyond the box score, is what makes him unique.

And it’s what makes it easier to cope with those nights when he’s as much of a headache to his team as the opponent, as was the case Saturday, when was 1-of-10 from the field, had more turnovers (three) than assists (two) unleashed some frustrations.

“Draymond’s value to us is his defense and rebounding and basketball IQ and intensity,” Kerr said before the game. “His shot is going to come and go. He’s going to have games where he makes some threes. He’s going to have games where he doesn’t. But it really doesn’t matter to me. What matters to me is everything else that he does for us. That’s where his real value comes in.”

Kerr clearly was confident that Green would revert to being his customary self. Green can create waves, which result in turbulence along the journey, but on the vast majority of occasions, he’s there for his teammates and his coaches.