What's next for Warriors' arena?

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What's next for Warriors' arena?

On May 19 Golden State Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob stated: It is going to happen, let there be no doubt, when speaking about the new arena the team is going to privately finance and build in San Francisco on Piers 3032. As the Warriors continue to unveil details on the deal there is a checklist of key points that will tell the tale at the start of the 2017-2018 season.

1.) Debt load and project financing: The partnership led by Lacob and Peter Guber paid 450 million to buy the team. Add on another 600 million of privately financed cash to pay for the arena and you are talking a cool billion. How they make the arena project into a positive cash register will be a tricky financial transaction.

2.) Bond payoff in Oakland: If they move theyll reportedly be on the hook for an estimated 70-95 million relating to the Coliseum arena retrofit. With the As and Raiders' future in Oakland a question, you would think that the city will fight hard to get paid if the Warriors leave town.

3.) Premium seating: It's assumed there will be price escalation in the new arena, but until the number of suites and their prices are revealed its a waiting game. Keep your eyes open for the new arena preview center which will be constructed a few years out to sell premium seats, suites and and season tickets for the new arena.

4.) Naming rights: This is a critical component of any privately financed sports venue. The 49ers have not announced a partner or the price tag for naming rights on their stadium. Industry estimates say they are shopping a deal between 300-400 million over 20 years. This number would help set the market for the Warriors. Pacific Bell (AT&T) paid 50 million to the Giants over 24 years.

5.) Breaking ground and driving piles: For a 2017 opener they will have to start actual arena construction 24-26 months out, which means the summer of 2015.

6.) The San Francisco Board of Supervisors: No matter what mayor Ed Lee says, navigating this project through the Board of Supervisors will be no slam dunk.

7.) The Past is prologue: It took the politically savvy Giants 16 years to realize the dream that became AT&T Park. The new football stadium that's being constructed in Santa Clara was preceded by 13 years of heavy lifting. Piers 3032 have had four previous unsuccessful attempts at development, including the most recent by the city and software billionaire Larry Ellison. The piers were going to be the hub for the events of Americas Cup 2013. The five-year construction timetable set by Warriors ownership is very ambitious.

8.) San Francisco seals: Anytime a construction project touches San Francisco Bay a significant (EIR) Environmental Impact Review process ensues -- especially for one of this magnitude. Dealing with CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) guidelines tends to slow down even the most optimistic developers. The lineup of groups with oversight and input on the project will include:
Save The Bay
S.F. Bay Conservation and Development Commission
Port of San Francisco
California Coastal Commission
Baykeeper
Save the Bay
Bay Planning Coalition
California Dept. of Fish & Game
Bay Institute of San Francisco
San Francisco Board of Supervisors
California Land Commission
Sailors Union of the Pacific
Embarcaderians: any number of community groups that will look to preserve the unique nature of the Embarcadero.

9.) San Francisco Giants: On April 4, the Giants announced a mixed use residential and commercial development on 27 acres at Mission Rock. The Giants and their development partner Cordish will break ground in 2015. Initially it looked like the Giants and the Warriors were going to partner on this land for the new arena.

10.) Warrior fans: No doubt this is one of the most loyal groups in all of sports. The Warriors' season ticket base is one of the healthiest in the NBA. You can make a solid case that outside of New York, L.A., Chicago, Dallas, Miami and San Antonio, the Bay Area is the best market for NBA basketball in the country.

11.) Warrior worriors: Its critical to win when you are marketing a new building, as the 49ers proved last season. The Warriors need to reverse a playoff drought that has left them out of postseason play 17 out of the last 18 years. The next three seasons will be hugely important to the success at the negotiating table for the project to move forward on time.

Over his 40-year career, sports executive Andy Dolich has held positions at the San Francisco 49ers, Oakland A's, Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies and Philadelphia 76ers. He is the Sports Business Insider for Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.

Durant makes plea to NBA officials: 'S--- talking is part of the game'

Durant makes plea to NBA officials: 'S--- talking is part of the game'

OAKLAND -- Kevin Durant wishes more NBA officials had a better grasp of the language of the game.

They don’t seem to understand that “trash talk” almost always is little more than an act in which healthy emotions are released. It’s as much of the game on the court as pointing out a bad haircut or a fashion error in the locker room.

“I was raised that if you weren’t talking on the court, then something (bad) is going on,” Durant said after Warriors practice on Friday.

Durant caught a glimpse of the chatter earlier this week between former Oklahoma City teammate Russell Westbrook and Houston guard Patrick Beverley in decisive Game 5 of the Thunder-Rockets series and was disappointed when the officials slapped each with a technical foul.

“I was like, ‘Man, just play on. It’s a part of the game,’” Durant said.

Though Durant himself is not a premier trash-talker, he plays alongside one in fellow forward Draymond Green.

“That’s why we started playing, to talk a little s--- here and there,” said Durant, who grew up in the Washington D.C. area. “Draymond is really good at it. There are a lot of guys in the league that are good. More guys are quiet now than before.

“But s--- talking is a part of the game. I love it. It’s fun when you’re on the same team as a guy that does it. And then, when you’re playing against it, it’s even better because it brings the best out of you.”

For Durant, there always will be a place for trash talk on the court. Not only did he experience it while growing up but he also was indoctrinated in the practice from the moment he arrived in the NBA in 2007.

He recalls, with fondness, being targeted as a rookie by Kevin Garnett and a few other Celtics.

“When I came into the league, that’s when the Celtics had just got together,” Durant said. “Paul Pierce and KG and those guys talked bad to me as a rookie. I was 19. And they talked so bad to me. And I was talking right back. It was just a fun exchange. That’s what basketball is about.”

Now if only he could get officials to realize this.

Klay must have one thing before every game or 'chalk it up as a loss for me'

Klay must have one thing before every game or 'chalk it up as a loss for me'

Klay Thompson is really good at basketball.

He's been an All-Star three straight years and was named Third-Team All-NBA the last two seasons.

What's the secret to his success? He recently talked about his preparation with CBS Sports:

"My approach to the game is a lot more caluculated now -- as far as getting my rest, recovery after a big workout. Balancing your life is essential; on the court, off the court -- it's huge.

"As a high school player and as a collegiate, I would just kind of show up and play. As a professional, I have a certain routine that is very regimented. If I don't have a gameday nap you might as well chalk it up as a loss for me. I have to have my gameday nap just to get my mind right, get a little rest, maximize your energy for the game.

"Whether it's the arena or the practice gym, we're always there. Don't get to see the light of day sometimes so it's very important for me to get outside -- get some sun, get some fresh air.

"You have to get your mind off the game. I'm really a simple man -- it could be just sitting outside reading a book or playing pool, playing chess, video games. I love to take my dog, Rocco, to the park -- just stuff to keep your mind active, or your body active and get away from baskteball.

"You need that balance in your life. You can't just get totally consumed by basketball and then it kind of wears on your happiness. You gotta have a certain balance so you are eager to go to the game every day, and your hungry to get in the arena and put on a show."