Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ellis Provides Depth to Warriors Roster

I just got back from Oracle Arena and it was nice to see the Warriors win a laugher after dropping two straight buzzer beaters at home. The injury depleted Clippers had 7 players out and suited the league minimum 8 players. Unfortunately, there was no Baron Davis homecoming. Other sorely missed Clippers were Chris Kamen, Marcus Camby, and Zack Randolf. If the W's didn't win tonight, there would be serious problems.

The return of Monta Ellis is the biggest news in Warrior world. For Warriors fans that have watched Ellis mature over the past several years, it's easy to see Monta has grown up since last year. He's covered in tattoos, sporting a little chin hair, and walks with a swagger. When he's on the court, he expects to score. Over the past two games, Ellis has shown signs of his old explosiveness, but he has not been hitting the mid range jumper, a shot he made at a high percentage last season. He also hasn't been getting all the way to the rim in traffic as we have seen in the past. Instead, Monta has attempted runners and floaters in the lane. But I am not concerned. In fact, I love the new, more confident, tatted up Monta, who is eager to prove it was a smart idea to sign him long-term. His stamina will return and so will his mid range J. The next step in Monta's game will be his three point shot. Yes, expect Monta to take more three's and hit at a good percentage.

With Ellis in the lineup, do the W's have a chance to make the playoffs? Its tough to say because we haven't seen this team with all players healthy. I'm excited to see Crawford and Ellis together in the back court, complimented by a solid bench. (Maggette, Randolf, Morrow, Turiaf, and Watson) Picking them playoffs might be too lofty, but the Warriors will have enough depth to beat the teams they should have like the Grizzlies, Thunder, Kings, and T'Wloves. Playoffs??!! Play-offs?!! (Jim Mora)

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