Poole: Warriors realize they all need each other
Stephen Curry must find his inner caretaker, because he is Mark Jackson's point guard, for better or worse. (AP)
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After shooting 36 percent in the preseason and 40 percent on opening night, Stephen Curry is back in The Zone. He shot 61 percent over the past two games. He's hot, he's rolling and his coach is not pleased.
Neither, really, is Curry.
That's because Curry, by committing 18 turnovers in the past two games, is giving away too many easy baskets to the other team.
A point guard's first priority is not to shoot well but to run the offense as efficiently as possible. Nobody understands that better than coach Mark Jackson, a standout point guard for 17 NBA seasons. He welcomes Curry's 22-of-36 shooting (61 percent), but he simply cannot overlook the turnovers.
''He understands that he has to be better,'' Jackson said. "He understands that if we are going to achieve our vision he's got to take care of the basketball.''
In a league where point guards strive to deliver three assists for every turnover, Curry's ratio is closer to 3-to-2. And it's almost 3-to-3 over the last two games, during which he totaled 21 assists and 18 turnovers.
''Just trying to do too much, thread the needle,'' Curry said. ''I've been studying film, trying to get better, and I'll continue to do that.
''I've got to play smarter. Sometimes, getting a shot up is better than trying to thread a needle when it's not necessary.''
When Curry engaged in a mesmerizing duel with Clippers point guard Chris Paul last Thursday, finishing with 38 points and nine assists, to Paul's 42 and 15, it was Steph's 11 turnovers that played on Jackson's mind. It was no different two nights later, when the fifth-year guard committed seven giveaways, six in the second half.
''That's unacceptable to me as his coach,'' Jackson said. "But more importantly, he knows it. So there is no sense in me beating him upside the head.
"What will not happen is (me) taking him out.''
And that's where we stand as the Warriors meet the 76ers Monday night in Philadelphia. Curry has located his missing shot. Now he must find his inner caretaker, because he is Jackson's point guard, for better or worse.
''I appreciate the responsibility and I know I'm up for that challenge,'' Curry said. ''So I'm not worried about it. But I need to figure it out.''
INJURY UPDATE: Small forward Harrison Barnes' status has been upgraded from ''out'' to ''day-to-day'' as he recovers from inflammation in his left toe. He presumably will play at some point on this road trip, maybe as soon as Monday. Backup center Jermaine O'Neal also is listed as day-to-day with a right foot contusion.
WHAT'S NEXT: The Warriors (2-1) open their four-game road trip against the 76ers Monday at Wells Fargo Center. Philly, at 3-0, is the hottest team in the NBA, and rookie point guard Michael Carter-Williams has been particularly impressive so far.