I find myself listening to KNBR these days and often judging and comparing my opinions to those of the hosts. Thursday, Rod Brooks said something very interesting that gave me a completely different perspective on how the Warriors should be expected to finish out their season.
I found it quite odd that callers were calling in to Bay Area sports shows upset that the W's just pulled off a nice win over the Hawks, minus Steph Curry and getting a tremendous effort from Dominic McGuire in the process. Now I understand the idea of wanting to get that top-7 pick and that ultimately being the best thing for this team long-term, but as I've been writing over the last few weeks, that's just not reality. I mean, there are 6 teams in the East alone that are worse than the Warriors and we're talking without Curry for 1/2 of these games. They'd currently rank as the 11th worst team in the league, which means no lottery and obviously, no top-7. So, as I've been saying, they have to be figuring out a plan B and hopefully, they already have one. As for tanking the season, the thing that Brooks said was basically, how are you going to ask an NBA player on a 1 year deal, playing for a his career and a shot for next season, to just lay down? Perfect example was Dominic McGuire vs. Atlanta. People assumed he was put into the starting lineup because the Warriors were going to start playing randoms and begin the "tanking" process. However, McGuire showed exactly why Mark Jackson is coaching a team that is around the bottom-5, team talent-wise especially without a 100% Curry, to within a few games of .500.
McGuire didn't do much scoring, but gave the Warriors an element, well, make that two elements that they so sorely needed. Rebounding (15) and defense (1 steal) in 34 minutes of play. He started officially at the two, but played mostly the 3, with Dorrell Wright, or Brandon Rush getting time at 2. Wright has been a disappointment all season long, and I really hope Jackson starts having the quick trigger with him after seeing the dominant display McGuire can put one when given minutes. He plays with a toughness and a defense first, secure the ball and rebound mentality, and I expect Jackson to reward that play with upwards of 20-25 minutes per night. Could very well cut into Dorrell's minutes. I like toughness of the front-line when it's Udoh-Lee-McGuire. That's more the type of personnel that fits Jackson's scheme, I'll tell you that much... And while one topic of that Hawks game, how about Monta Ellis stepping into the role of point guard? I heard through the grapevine again Thursday that the Magic have inquired about adding Monta Ellis to help persuade Howard to stick around, but Ellis is the W's heart right now. As much talent as Curry has, and as good a shooter he can be, I really think Monta needs to become a full-time point guard. He may not posses all the natural point guard characteristics, but neither do Russel Westbrook (a guy a lot like Ellis) in OKC and he's considered to be one of the top PG's in the game today! As I've said all along, I think Curry is the one to trade of the two. The only downside with Monta, is the fact the dude's played 40 minutes a night for like 7 seasons straight now. Even though he's just 26, sooner or later, all the mileage could catch up with him, like an overused running back. Frank Gore, for example... Oh wait, different Blog! If you are planning on betting for the Warriors, or perhaps more suitably, against the Warriors, NBA Betting is the best place to find odds. Again, I think they end up between 10th and 15th, and miss the playoffs, as well as their draft pick!