Tag:Stephen Curry
Posted on: March 17, 2011 1:05 pm

If Smart's not coming back is Curry the reason?

Posted by Royce Young

When Keith Smart was hired before the season, or more specifically promoted from the second seat on the bench after Don Nelson "resigned," it was clear Smart wasn't thought to be the long-term answer.

He was given just a one-year contract and with the Warriors playing better this season but still struggling in a lot of the same old areas, Smart may pay for it. Especially with an ambitious owner breathing down his neck to turn things around now-ish. On top of that, it could be Smart's relationship with the franchise player that does it too. CSN Bay Area has the goods.

When Warriors owner Joe Lacob says publicly at the end of the season he’s not bringing back Keith Smart as coach — which seems very much a foregone conclusion at this point — he’ll certainly have some reasons.

Right at the top of the list will be Smart’s relationship with second-year point guard Stephen Curry. There is no feud, no profanity-laced shouting matches or even any dislike, really. There’s not even really a “problem.”

But something’s amiss between the two. All you have had to do was watch the Warriors all season long and you would have seen it. To say Smart has had Curry on a shorter leash than Don Nelson did a year ago would be an understatement.

Playing is and will always be a coach's greatest weapon and Smart uses that against Curry often. This season, Curry is averaging about three minutes less per game but is scoring better and shooting higher percentages. The problem though is how Curry takes care of the ball and he's made no improvement in that area since last season, still averaging three turns a game. That's what's irking Smart.

Thing is, Curry is your guy. He's The Player. If the Warriors had depth, it wouldn't be as big a deal, but sitting Curry for players way worse isn't a smart thing for Smart (hi-oh!). He's trying to make Curry a better player, but it's all about response and right now, it doesn't appear that Smart is getting through.

The Warriors kind of seem like a franchise that's closing in on something even though they don't know what it is. Owner Joe Lacob keeps talking about trading the team's best players and now it looks like Smart's job could be open. Again, the team's not bad! They still stink defensively, but they rebound and defend just enough to win some games.

The team has already won four more games than last season and honestly, if a strong push is made to end the season the Warriors could flirt with .500. If they were in the East, they could be battling for the six-seed right now. Doesn't sound like that's going to help Smart much though.
Posted on: March 7, 2011 3:43 pm
Edited on: March 7, 2011 3:43 pm

Lacob says team considered dealing Curry or Ellis

Posted by Royce Young

This isn't exactly new news, as Warriors owner Joe Lacob had talked previously about potentially trading Stephen Curry or Monta Ellis if the right deal presented itself. But in an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Lacob again reiterated that point.

"We did consider it," Lacob said. "And poked around. Listened to some offers and in fact in some cases made some offers. Though not final offers, but poking around. We decided that we were not going to get value in return. Those players were just too good for what we were going to get in return. We feel much more comfortable keeping them part of our core positions going forward."

Lacob also said that the Warriors could have acquired Gerald Wallace from Charlotte, but passed on it because the team didn't see it as a good fit.

"We could've gotten Wallace -- he's not somebody we thought would make us better. I really believe that," Lacob said. "He just doesn't fit for us. He's good defensive player, rebounder, certain things that do fit, certain things that don't. I could argue, don't know whether Portland got better or worse."

I like Joe Lacob. He's invested in his team, cares about results and wants to do better for a great fanbase. But is it just me or does he run his mouth a lot? I thought Curry kind of said he wasn't psyched about Lacob dropping his name out there in trade talks? And Lacob even apologized for it, saying that Curry and Ellis would be Warriors "for a very long time."

So I don't really know what to believe with Lacob. I kind of get the feeling that he just likes talking. He likes talking to people about his franchise and what they could do. It's like a fan on sports talk radio, except he's the owner of the team and actually gets to make decisions so people value his comments.

Lacob has been extremely vocal as the owner of the team, deciding to take a very front seat approach. It's different than previous owner Chris Cohan who seemed to hang in the shadows and make curious decisions without explanation.

But Lacob might want to think about some of his statements about personell, because players don't like being talked about simply as property. I thought Lacob had figured that out already.
Posted on: February 20, 2011 1:47 am
Edited on: February 20, 2011 1:55 am

Chris Paul's embarrassing All-Star moment

Chris Paul misses layup to open Skills Competition performance. Fails miserably.

Posted by Matt Moore

Chris Paul was the favorite. He wasn't even voted into the Skills Challenge. He was just entered. But during a stretch where his team is struggling and the fans are starting to wonder about his play , even All-Star Weekend didn't afford him a break from the tough going. Paul took off for the Skills Challenge first round, and ... well ... take a look. 

Oh, Chris. 

Paul was, naturally, eliminated in the first round while Stephen Curry breezed to an easy victory over Russell Westbrook in the second round.  But for CP3, the concern is probably going to be greater Saturday night at the round of parties and tomorrow in the Western Conference All-Star locker rooms when everyone starts cracking up at a blown layup right off the bat. 

It's almost as if Paul wasn't giving his all, or something. 
Posted on: February 18, 2011 7:04 pm
Edited on: February 18, 2011 7:17 pm

Standout sophs deal with injuries, adjustments

The top three candidates for the NBA's 2010 Rookie of the Year have all struggled with injuries and adjustments in their second season. Posted by Ben Golliver. 

LOS ANGELES – Sacramento Kings guard Tyreke Evans, Milwaukee Bucks guard Brandon Jennings and Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry all enjoyed charmed rookie seasons, each providing highlight-reel material and consistent production to make a competitive run at last season’s Rookie of the Year honor. The second time through the NBA's season-long obstacle course hasn't been smooth sailing for any of them, however. Evans has been limited by plantar fasciitis, Jennings had surgery on his foot and Curry has battled persistent and painful ankle problems.

"A lot of guys have had a lot of injuries," Evans said after the Sophomore team's morning practice on Friday, in advance of Friday night's Rookie/Sophomore challenge. "Hopefully we'll get them out of the way now, be ready for next year."

Evans' foot pain is forcing him to miss the Rookie/Sophomore challenge. "I know it ain't 100 percent, it's hurting me kinda bad, so I want to see the doctor and see what he says," Evans said. Similarly, Jennings was scheduled to compete in the Slam Dunk contest but pulled out to avoid putting any unnecessary wear on his healing foot.

The injuries have been just the beginning of the challenges facing this year's sophomores. All three have watched their teams struggle to below .500 records at the break and all three have had to deal with defenses that are more focused on stopping them individually and roughing them up.

"It's totally different than your first year," Jennings said. "[During your rookie year], a lot of coaches don't know you, they don't know your game. Everything is totally different. It's an adjustment you have to make. [This year,] they play me tougher, they're showing on the pick and rolls, they're more physical, they force me to my right more."

Confronting new and improved defensive schemes, while also working his way back into form, is doubly challenging. "The injury has been a mental thing, I've got to put it back together, get back to a winning mentality."

The mental adjustments have been a focus for Curry as well. "It's more of a cerebral game this year," Curry said. "You have to sit back and prepare and approach it a different way."

His biggest adjustment has been getting comfortable with a new-look Warriors lineup that includes forward David Lee and big man Ekpe Udoh. "It's just about seeing the floor and managing the game better. I had new teammates that had to get to know and learn, and where they wanted the ball, how to play with them. As a point guard, that's your first job, to get everybody involved in the game. That's something that I've really had to study film, study the flow of the game, make sure we're getting the shot that we want."

Curry noted that, despite the injuries, he's more accustomed to the physical pounding the second time around. "Last year was worse. Coming in, most of the initial attacks from the opponents were taking me or Monta [Ellis] into the post to try to exploit that. We hold our own now, we don't really give up too much space and ground in that situation."

The Sophomore team's coach, Boston Celtics assistant Lawrence Frank, called the trio's struggles with injuries "purely coincidental" and said things could be a lot worse. "The summer between your first and second year as an NBA player is your hardest summer, that's a dangerous summer, especially if you've had success your first year. You feel a little puffy about yourself. You feel like you've arrived. But you realize, now you're on everyone's radar. They're gunning for you. They're coming after you."

Frank's message to Evans, Jennings, Curry and the sophomore group: this is just another step on a path of continual improvement and the target on their backs is only going to get bigger. "You've got to get better. If you stay the same, you've gotten worse."

Posted on: February 17, 2011 7:53 pm

Rose, Curry, Wall, Westbrook join CP3 in Skills

Derrick Rose, Stephen Curry, John Wall, Russell Westbrook voted to challenge Chris Paul in Skills Competition. But is Rose the favorite over even Chris Paul?
Posted by Matt Moore

The fans have spoken, and they've spoken for the young guys. 

The NBA announced Thursday night that Derrick Rose, John Wall, Stephen Curry, and Russell Westbrook have been voted in to join Chris Paul in the Taco-Bell Skills Competition on NBA All-Star Weekend Saturday Night.  The crew represents a young field of challengers, with Curry the oldest at 22 (by only about a few months over Rose and Westbrook, also 22), and Wall the youngest at 20.  

When we broke down the odds on these guys winning, we just about nailed it, factoring in Tyreke Evans' foot injury which will keep him out of this weekend's action, and putting aside our irrational love of Tony Parker as a spoil sport for the high flying kiddos. 

Given Chris Paul's recent struggles which may or may not be injury related you have to think Rose is the favorite here. That's odd to think about considering how he's probably the least "point guard"-esque of the star guards in this league. Stephen Curry is likely the sexy sleeper pick and John Wall the underdog because of his three point shooting (31% from the arc). The fans did right in this one, stacking the competition with young, charismatic guys they want to see instead of rewarding veterans for their history of excellence. 

After all, that's what Sunday's for. Isn't that right, Mr. Aldridge? 
Posted on: February 16, 2011 12:14 am
Edited on: February 16, 2011 12:16 am

Warriors GM: lots of trade chatter, no substance

Golden State Warriors GM Larry Riley says this year's trade chatter lacks substance. Posted by Ben Golliver. larry-riley-warriors

Earlier Tuesday, we noted statements made by Portland Trail Blazers GM Rich Cho, who said that he feels trade talks are being held up by the uncertainty surrounding Denver Nuggets All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony and that things likely wouldn't pick up until next week.

Also on Tuesday, Golden State Warriors GM Larry Riley sang the same tune, telling the Mercury News that this year's trading season has been a lot of hot air so far.
"There’s a lot of chatter, but not a lot of substance to the chatter ... And it seems that a lot of teams actually positioned themselves last summer to get ready for what’s going on right now. So then there’s some reluctance to move away from the plans they put into place at that time. ... Now, things will Heat up. As people get closer to the deadline, deadlines tend to draw people out."
Also of note, Riley said that interest in expiring contracts this year appears to have wained.
"If you look at what has been done—Toronto acquires Peja Stojakovic and then apparently saw no value in having him as an expiring contract. And that philosophy looks to be in place with a lot of teams."
Aside from some foolish, back-tracked hypoethetical chatter regarding Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis from their new owner, the Warriors haven't found themselves in many trade rumors this year. 

With a 24-29 record as of Tuesday night, Golden State's chance of making a playoff push in the jam-packed Western Conference are remote. Taking on additional salary heading into a potential lockout would seem to be a risky proposition for any team, and the Warriors have already locked themselves into long-term deals for Ellis, David Lee and Andris Biederins, so any flexibility they can create will be at a premium. 

Given that the Warriors are currently over the cap and have two sizeable contracts coming off their books this summer -Vladimir Radmanovic and Dan Gadzuric - they might be best served to simply wait things out prior to the deadline, opting to enjoy that salary cap relief themselves and test their luck in the NBA Draft Lottery.
Posted on: February 1, 2011 6:33 pm
Edited on: February 1, 2011 7:11 pm

NBA announces Rookie / Sophomore All-Star rosters

The NBA has announced the rosters for it's annual rookie vs. sophomore challenge game during All-Star weekend. Posted by Ben Golliver. griffin-evans

It seems like we say this every year, but, on paper, the Sophomores are going to absolutely destroy the Rookies in this year's Rookie Challenge. The NBA released the rosters for the two teams on Tuesday, and the Sophomores tout reigning Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans, along with his stiff competition for that award: Brandon Jenning and Stephen Curry

The Rookies pair up the lock for 2011 Rookie of the Year, Blake Griffin, and John Wall, which is a match made in highlight heaven. Past those two, and perhaps DeMarcus Cousins and glue guy Landry Fields, the talent level tails off pretty hard, pretty fast. 

Here's the full list of names, via the NBA. 
Sacramento Kings guard Tyreke Evans, the reigning T-Mobile  Rookie of the Year, and Los Angeles Clippers rookie forward Blake Griffin, the only  player  in  the  NBA  averaging at least 20 points, 12 rebounds and three assists, lead a list of 18 players selected for the 2011 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam to be held on Friday, Feb. 18, in Los Angeles during NBA All-Star 2011.
The participants in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam were selected by the NBA’s assistant coaches, with each team submitting one ballot. 

Joining  Evans  on  the Sophomore team are: San Antonio Spurs center DeJuan Blair, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson, Philadelphia 76ers guard Jrue Holiday, Oklahoma City Thunder forward/center Serge Ibaka, Milwaukee Bucks guard Brandon Jennings, and Portland Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews.

Washington Wizards guard John Wall, the top selection in the 2010 NBA Draft, joins Griffin on the Rookie team, which also includes: Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe, Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins, New Jersey Nets forward Derrick Favors, New York Knicks guard Landry Fields, Minnesota Timberwolves guard Wesley Johnson, Detroit Pistons center Greg Monroe, and San Antonio Spurs guard Gary Neal.
While this is barely worth noting because we're talking about an exhibition game, Blair, Gibson, Ibaka and Matthews all boast post-season experience and combine to possess a fair bit of basketball intelligence. And by that I mean: they'll play harder than most, but when Blake Griffin is about to make one of his posters they'll be savvy enough to get out of the way. 

One other footnote: DeRozan, Ibaka and Griffin will all be in the Slam Dunk contest as well. 

I can't wait for this game. There's a distinct possibility that Wall could throw Griffin an alley-oop from the far baseline, setting a Guiness record in the process.
Posted on: January 28, 2011 8:42 pm
Edited on: January 28, 2011 9:39 pm

Warriors owner apologizes to Curry for trade talk

Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob reportedly apologized to guard Stephen Curry for bringing up his name in trade talks. Posted by Ben Golliver.stephen-curry

Earlier this week, we noted a report that Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry was "shocked" to hear that his team's new owner, Joe Lacob, had brought up the idea of trading either him or guard Monta Ellis on a radio program. 

At the time, we wrote that calling out players in public is almost always a disaster and that Lacob would likely regret making such a statement once he took some time to fully think through the implications it might have on a young player's psyche. 

On Friday, Yahoo! Sports reports that Lacob did indeed re-think his stance and apologized to Curry for his statements.
Curry said he received an apologetic text message from Lacob the morning after the Mercury News interview. Warriors general manager Larry Riley also called Curry, his father and his agent to calm the situation. In an interview with Bay Area radio station KNBR this week, Lacob said both Curry and Ellis would be Warriors “for a very long time.”
“He was making sure I was certain that he liked my game, liked me here, liked how I fit with the system,” Curry said of Lacob. “He could have easily let me read and interpret it for myself.”
This is the proper, class move from Lacob. He made a fairly bone-headed mistake as a first-time owner and he made it right before things got too emotional. The situation never should have happened, but at least it was resolved well. Curry sounds fairly happy with how things turned out too.
“I think optimistically about everything,” he said. “I like it here. I like my teammates and everything about the Warriors organization. I can’t picture being anywhere else, especially this early in my career.”
Now that the entire process has played out, I'm left to return to my first reaction. Stephen Curry is really freaking good and he's on his rookie deal. How exactly did Lacob plan to trade him and get fair value? 

In the end, this one goes down as a bizarre, nonsensical series of events, but at least it won't linger as a personal affront.
Category: NBA
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