2 weeks into the 08-09 and we have already found out a lot about this young Warriors team. First and foremost, they will compete. 2-3 isn’t bad considering Moped Monta is out, Al Harrington wants to be traded, Corey Maggette can’t shoot a jumper, Stephen Jackson is your PG, and 13 of your 16 players are under 25. Sure the laid an egg against Memphis but this isn’t your Uncle’s Warriors.
After the first 5 games it’s pretty clear that the fastbreak points are hard to come by when you don’t have the fastest player in the league. With Baron leaving for LA, gone are the strips, steals and extra possessions which often led to easy buckets. Before the season started I wondered ‘How are they going to create extra possessions without Baron’s gambles”. The Warriors are never going to be a great shooting team but if you take 10 more shots than the opposing team, you don’t need a great shooting night to win. Early in the season there getting those extra possessions by hitting the offensive glass. The Warriors are much improved rebounding team.The addition of Maggette and Turiaf has paid dividends. Gone are the days of Al ‘And 1’ Harrington playing the 5 and Mickael Pietrus playing the 4.
Speaking of Big Al. His play early on is going to make it hard for the Warriors to trade him. I’ve come to realize that Al’s best days are behind him. Sure he can hit a 3. But what else does he offer. Typical box score for Big Al 13pts (5-16FG) 4reb 0ast and 4pf (Side note: Over the past 2 years Al has to the lead the league in ‘and 1’ fouls. He has at least 2 per game). Last night’s game solidified his fate with the Warriors. Brandon Wright had a break out game. Following there 111-101 win against the Nuggets Nellie basically said “Al I like you. We wanted to do this quietly but you went public….We want to trade you. But nobody’s wants a player who can’t make a shot, rebound, pass or play defense. Not only does that make it hard for us to trade you but your hurting our team....Sorry buddy but we’re going with the kid.” I appreciate Al commitment to the Warriors. A lot of the Warriors new found success can be attributed to Al’s personality and love for the game. He didn’t complain when Nellie told him to guard Yao Ming or Shaq. Nellie asked Al to completely change his game. And he did it. To his determent of course but he did what ever the team wanted. Good move for the team, bad move for Al’s career. I don’t blame him for wanting to be traded. The fastest way to get out of Oakland is to produce. 33% from the field just isn’t going to cut it. We have enough sub 40% shooters on our team. The Warriors would be lucky to get Shelden Williams in return for his services.
Speaking of sub 40% shooting….of the 8 players getting more than 15 minutes per game, only 4 of them are shooting over 40%. Only 2 of those 4 players attempt more than 6 shoots per game.
Which brings me to Dre. You know Dre aka AB aka Mr. Double Double. Andris has been the most consistent Warriors. When people talk about young big men his name is never mentioned. Sure you can cut off his right arm and he wouldn’t miss it but he still gets the job done. I really think he should be mentioned along side of the Bynums and Oden of the world. He’s only 22 and he’s getting better every year.
Message to Corey Maggette your not Stpehen Jackson. Its OK for Jack to shoot 7-21 but not you. You sir must drive to the rack everytime you get the ball. Its OK Warriors fans Nellie has developed the 4:1 rule for Maggy. Corey is allowed 1 jump shot per 4 free throw attempts. Fair is fair. right.
T minus 21 games until Monta is eligible to return hopefully they can stay around .500 while he’s out. Its going to be rough, 13 of the next 21 games are on the road.
BIg Al we still love but you should have kept this behind closed doors