Sunday, December 28, 2008

Monta Still Not Ready

Everybody was hoping that the Warriors best player would be healthy and ready return as soon as his suspension ended on December 17th. However, as we sit here on December 28th, Monta Ellis still has no definite timetable for when he'll return to the court to play actual games. He's been practicing a little bit with the Warriors, but hasn't been able to go all out and some around the organization fear it could be another 4-6 weeks before Ellis is fully game ready. I said in a post about a month back that the W's should take no chances with Monta and not bring him back until he's %110. He's in the first year of a huge contract extension, and it's more important that they get him healed right now rather than take the chance of his injury lingering on by playing him too soon. Look at what has happened with Gilbert Arenas. If he would have just stayed out last season, he probably would have been 100 percent ready to roll on opening night, but instead he's still a ways off from returning as we get ready to enter January. The Warriors should learn from the Wizards mistake and realize that they need to be extra cautious with their franchise guard cause it's not worth having this become a chronic issue in the long run.

Ellis hasn't been the only Warrior who's been shelved by injury lately. Corey Maggette hasn't played since December 9th due to a bum hamstring, and Jamal Crawford went down on the 23rd with a strained groin. Both will probably beat Ellis back to the court, but their absences has opened up opportunity for Marco Belinelli and the kid has responded. He helped the Warriors get past the reigning world champion Boston Celtics with a 22 point, 4 assist effort on Friday night. Marco needs to cut back on his turnovers, but he's been better on defense and has really put together his offensive game this December. If nothing else, it increases the trade value of Belinelli as I'm not sure where he fits in when everybody is healthy. I still would love to see the Warriors get a true power forward before the trade deadline and Belinelli could be a big part of any potential deal. It's good to see him increasing his value.

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