Monday, July 30, 2012

Warriors To Re-Sign Rush, Ink Landry

Well it has taken nearly all summer to get done, but the Warriors are apparently in the final stages of negotiating to re-sign swingman Brandon Rush. They also are in line to sign former Hornet, Carl Landry.

Carl Landry
The impending Rush signing is something that the Warriors have been trying to get done since late May/early June. The three-point sniper was a steady contributor for the Dubs in 2012 and Bob Myers made bringing him back one of the teams top priorities. Rush averaged nearly 10 points per game for the Warriors last season, and sported one of the best 3 pt. percentages in all the NBA. With Andrew Bogut in town, the Warriors will likely switch up their offense this season with more ball movement running through the front court. Bogut is an excellent passer and should mesh well with the Warriors plethora of jump shooters like Rush. The Dubs also are on the verge of inking another free agent in the form of power forward Carl Landry. One of the main areas the Warriors wanted to improve this summer was their front court depth, and Landry is a good scorer and rebounder. He averaged over 12 ppg in under 25 minutes per game last year for New Orleans and should immediately become the primary backup to David Lee.

So, with these deals expected to become official within the next few days, it looks like the player movement portion of the Warriors offseason has wrapped up. They got themselves their new small forward in the draft, and Harrison Barnes has looked very good in the summer league. They got the backup point guard they wanted in Jarrett Jack earlier this month and these next two signings should close the book. Obviously we have a ways to go still this offseason, so nothing is for certain, but it looks like the Warriors sole focus moving forward will be with their youngsters in Vegas and getting their big-three healed up and ready for camp.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Barnes, Thompson Strong in Summer League

The Warriors started their summer league off strongly this weekend, defeating the LA Lakers Friday and watching their top picks from the last two drafts flourish.

Barnes Looks Ready
 In his unofficial Warriors debut, Harrison Barnes showed exactly why the 'Dubs were so ecstatic he was around at pick-7. He displayed all sorts of attributes vs. the Lakers Friday in Vegas, more than I was expecting out of him this early on. Granted, it's basically a rookie league, so he'll be facing much stiffer competition come October, but still, he was going up against fellow players his age and he was dominant. He had no trouble shooting the rock, as we all expected, but he played much better defense than I was expecting and had better handles as well. Coming in, scouts were making him out to be a catch-and-shoot player who doesn't create much for himself, but he showed more than that. What I liked most about the 20 year-old UNC stars game though was the basketball IQ he displayed. Watching the highlights, I have to say I was probably most impressed with his drive to the basket in which he sort of went up an into a Laker defender in order to draw some contact on layup attempt. Those are things you normally see out of the 10-year vets in this league, not a 20 year-old rookie playing his first summer league game. Barnes finished 8-14 from the field, including 4-4 from beyond the arch, and finished with 23 points in 25 minutes.

Thompson Has Improved
The guy Barnes will be lining up next to most nights also had his way with LA's summer league team. I was stoked to see Klay Thompson commit to the Vegas summer league this year, as it shows true leadership abilities. Instead of lounging around waiting for camp, Thompson wanted to build a better rapport with the incoming rookies. The Warriors bright young shooting guard basically did whatever he wanted out on the floor in Friday's game. He scored 25 points, pulled in 6 boards and dished out 5 assists in under 25 minutes of play. Thompson went into the offseason with a plan to improve his all-around game, and the early dividends are there. Most his damage done on the court his rookie season came from shooting the ball, but he's really got all-around talent to go with that sniper shot. I didn't see the game live, just saw highlights, but every time I saw Klay Thompson moving the ball, I was thinking I was watching Steph Curry. K.T. can handle the rock! Even when the Lakers were sending 2-3 defenders at him, he was making stuff happen. I know it's only summer league, but this Warriors team sure has some young talent to be excited about.

Health Watch: The Warriors got some good news over the weekend regarding David Lee's surgically repaired leg, as the power forward is set to begin strength and conditioning work. He should be 100% ready to go by October. That's one of the "big three" that look to be in the clear. The W's haven't said much about Steph Curry and Andrew Bogut's current status, but both are still expected to be ready to play in time for season opener.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Warriors Trade for Jarrett Jack

The Warriors made a move plenty of people saw coming Thursday, sending Dorrell Wright to Philly in exchange for Jarrett Jack. We did a Warriors Rundown Show for UnifySports.tv regarding this trade and a few other notes and thought we'd share it here:


Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Warriors Sign Picks, Spurned by Brandon Roy

After what most people deemed a very successful draft day last Thursday, the Warriors continue to look for ways to improve their roster by zeroing in on former Blazer, Brandon Roy.

Harrison Barnes and Festus Ezeli
Warriors GM Bob Myers mentioned the possibility of going after Roy before the draft last week, especially if the Warriors didn't end up taking a guard high in the draft. After selecting their heir apparent at small forward with pick 7, they added a sought after center in Vanderbilt's 6'11'', 265 pound Festus Ezeli. We haven't talked to much about the Warriors picks after Harrison Barnes, but they managed to get two pretty good talents after selecting the star UNC forward. Ezeli is an impact defender who plays with a high motor and plenty of court smarts. The Vanderbilt senior averaged 10.2 points, 6 boards and 2 blocks last season in just over 20 minutes per game. He was recovering from an injury early on in the year which limited his PT and production, but he still managed to come on strong towards the end of the year. He gives the Warriors the exact type of defense-first mentality they were looking to find in a big man, and as a guy coming off 4 years in college, he should be pretty tuned up and ready to help early on. They also snagged Draymond Green, the Michigan St. forward who averaged over 16 points and 10 boards last year for the Spartans. 

The Warriors filled a lot of needs with their draft selections, but one area they weren't able to shore up was their back court, which has prompted their interest in Roy. That along with the fact that Brandon Rush is entertaining offers elsewhere has got the Warriors looking desperately for help at the guard spots. Myers told us before the draft that he'd try and sign Roy if the Warriors didn't get a guard in the draft, and they didn't get one. Now with free agency hitting it's peak, the Warriors have to act on their targets quickly. Not only are they thin on 2 guards after Klay Thompson, but they also are in need of some point guard depth behind the fragile Steph Curry. I liked Roy when he was healthy in Portland, but I really don't know what he'd be able to offer them at this point. I'd rather see them spending resources on securing a good backup point guard for Curry like bringing back Jeremy Lin or even looking to a veteran like Raymond Felton. Those are two names I heard being linked to Golden State right after the season, however their limited cap space may prove getting a sought after point guard impossible.

Update: Apparently Brandon Roy was very close to signing with Golden State, but instead chose to sign on with the T-Wolves on a 2-year deal, spurning Golden State at the last second. Feels like the J.J. Hickson situation all over again in a way, but I'm not too upset to see Roy sign elsewhere. This should make bringing back Rush a top priority!