By Geoff Lepper
If you’ve already signed up with Twitter, you probably already know that it is fast becoming the NBA’s social network of choice. There are more than 100 active players on board (although some have not posted any information there in months) from a pool of roughly 425.
Some of the NBA Tweets are amusing, such as the back-and-forth bickering between former Warrior teammates C.J. Watson and Marcus Williams. Some cause concern, such as Michael Beasley’s famous “baggie” photo and ensuing messages (“Feelin like it’s not worth livin!!!!!!! I’m done”).
But none of them carry the heat of Nets swingman Chris Douglas-Roberts.
Douglas-Roberts was a second round pick in the 2008 draft who didn’t quite fall far enough for the Warriors to snatch him up (he went No. 40; Golden State got Richard Hendrix at No. 49, and we saw how that worked out). With Vince Carter offloaded to Orlando during the summer, Douglas-Roberts has become a starter in essentially a three-guard set with Courtney Lee and Devin Harris.
And when the Nets dropped games to Orlando and Washington on Friday and Saturday, respectively, falling to 0-3 to begin the season, Douglas-Roberts let loose on his Twitter account (@cdouglasroberts). None of this “Oh, we’ll get ‘em next time” stuff.
Mar24Filed under: News; Tagged as: Aaron Goodwin, Adonal Foyle, Al Harrington, Anthony Randolph, Brandan Wright, Don Nelson, Jamal Crawford, Marco Belinelli, Marcus Williams, Matt Barnes, Mickael Pietrus, Mike Dunleavy, Monta Ellis, Monte Poole, Patrick O'Bryant, Sarunas Jasikevicius, Stephen Jackson, Troy Murphy
By Geoff Lepper
Things have gotten so ridiculous in the Jamal Crawford-Don Nelson power struggle that it’s prompted a first in the (admittedly short) history of this site: The retraction of an earlier entry.
Back in November, when the Warriors swapped unhappy forward Al Harrington to the Knicks for Crawford, I wrote that it was the best deal Golden State could have made at that time.
My position was that since the Warriors had already cashed in their future salary-cap space by giving a maximum-allowed contract extension to Stephen Jackson, throwing away Harrington’s expiring deal wasn’t a horrible move it would have been for some teams.
[Sidebar on the Jackson deal: It still boggles the mind that the Warriors agreed to that extension some 18 months before a decision needed to be reached. There still has not been any adequate explanation (check that, no explanation AT ALL) by anyone at 1011 Broadway (including, most notably, team president Bobby Rowell, who hashed out the contract details with Jackson) about why Golden State abandoned two years’ worth of tough-as-nails negotiating stances with every member of its roster, then threw a pile of cash in Jackson’s lap.]
And exchanging someone who had no intention of playing here again for a guy in Crawford who can create off the dribble and shoot from distance could only help in the short term.
But after four months of watching the Jamal Crawford Era in Oakland, I can say this with certainty:
The Warriors should have eaten Harrington’s contract rather than pull the trigger on that deal.
By Geoff Lepper
The NBA’s All-Star break does not come at the halfway point of its season, of course. So instead of 41 games remaining to right the ship, the Warriors have only 28 contests left – not nearly enough time to transform their 19-35 record into anything resembling a playoff contender’s mark.
What, then, can we take away from the first two-thirds of Golden State’s 2008-09 season? And what can we look forward to as the final weeks tick away? Here are the assessments of one observer:
MID-TERM GRADE: B.
WORK TO DATE: His rebounding ability at power forward shored up the Warriors’ small-ball lineup, and ranking third in the league in 3-point percentage (46.2) was a great bonus. Still has too much of a propensity to not see open teammates, but he is showing improvement there, with an AST/TO ratio since Jan. 1 of 1.64. (Prior to that this season, he was at 1.12; in his previous two NBA seasons, he was at 1.06).
GOALS FOR APRIL 15: Prove that his shooting from distance is something the Warriors can count on long-term, and not just an aberration.
By Geoff Lepper
OAKLAND — Warriors guard Monta Ellis participated Tuesday in his first 5-on-5 drills of the season, mostly of the half-court variety. And with the team announcing that Marco Belinelli would miss 10 days, at a minimum, because of his badly sprained right ankle, the idea of seeing Ellis get on the court must be growing that much more alluring.
Ellis played on the White team (the reserves), in a small ball lineup alongside C.J. Watson, Marcus Williams (back from the flu), Jermareo Davidson and Rob Kurz. Ellis still wasn’t going 100 percent — this was the portion of practice where the Warriors work on individual sets, so it was a clear step down from the level of effort in a full-court scrimmage — but it is the closest he’s come to full-speed work since tearing up his left ankle in an August moped accident.
Ellis guarded Corey Maggette at the 3, and his mid-range jumper looked as smooth as ever as he dropped it in from 18 feet over Jamal Crawford and Anthony Morrow.
On the occasions when the teams would sprint downcourt (which would happen after the defense came up with a stop and a defensive board), Ellis often remained in the middle of the pack. But there were flashes of the player who was one of the two biggest reasons behind Golden State’s 48 wins last season. . .
OAKLAND — For the first time since his August moped accident and subsequent surgery to repair his left ankle, Monta Ellis participated in a Warriors practice, albeit on a limited basis.
Ellis took part in odd-man fast-break drills — 4-on-3s, 3-on-2s, 2-on-1s — Friday morning and looked good doing it, although he didn’t go full speed (I’d say his max was 80 percent or so).
“Way better than I thought he would be,” Warriors coach Don Nelson said. “He’s an amazing athlete.”
Ellis did not appear to be favoring the ankle in any way, but not surprisingly was bent over at the waist quite a bit between drills in the classic hardwood signal of tiredness.
“It’s probably the lightest thing that we do, and that’s why we had him participate,” Nelson said. “It’s not a practice. It’s very little contact, but it is some defenders out there.”
Ellis did not take part in 5-on-5 halfcourt work and the team skipped scrimmaging before its 2 p.m. flight to Portland because of a lack of healthy bodies. In addition to injured forward Brandan Wright (partially dislocated left shoulder) and swingman Stephen Jackson (strained right hamstring), the Warriors were without guard Marcus Williams (flu) and forward Corey Maggette (family leave).
Williams will not make the trip to Portland, a team spokesman said, but Maggette — who’s in Chicago — is expected to meet the team in Oregon and play against the Trail Blazers.
(Forgot to add that Matt Steinmetz should have video of Ellis up later this afternoon.)
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TagsAcie Law Al Harrington Allen Iverson Andris Biedrins Anthony Morrow Anthony Randolph Baron Davis Brandan Wright C.J. Watson Chris Cohan Chris Hunter Chris Mullin Corey Maggette Dan Dickau DeMarcus Nelson Devean George Don Nelson Gilbert Arenas Jamal Crawford Jason Richardson Jeff Fried Jermareo Davidson Keith Smart Kelenna Azubuike Kevin Durant Kevin Garnett Kobe Bryant Larry Riley Marco Belinelli Marcus Williams Matt Barnes Mickael Pietrus Mikki Moore Monta Ellis Patrick O'Bryant Richard Hendrix Robert Rowell Rob Kurz Ronny Turiaf Stephen Curry Stephen Jackson Stephon Marbury Steve Nash Troy Murphy Vladimir Radmanovic
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