49ers exorcise demons, beat Chargers 20-17 in preseason finale

There are some interesting story lines on the San Francisco 49ers after they held on to beat the San Diego Chargers 20-17 on the road to close out the preseason.

Quarterbacks:  The ongoing “quarterback controversy” seems to be silenced as Alex Smith had a solid game while Colin Kaepernick floundered.  Yet Coach Harbaugh still will not outright name Alex as the starter.  Interestingly, former UFL QB Josh McCown was a perfect 4-4 for 51 yards in his first game action since being signed, albeit against the Chargers backups.  Mecleod Bethel-Thompson did play in the fourth quarter and was 0-1 passing.  He will likely be cut as the Niners need to go from 80 players currently on the roster to 53 on Saturday.

Running Backs: Frank Gore got paid and only played 3 snaps, not touching the ball at all today.  Kendall Hunter continues to put up stats including a kickoff return for 51 yards tonight, while Anthony Dixon held his own by punching the ball into the end zone for 2 scores.  I don’t expect to see Xavier Oman make the 53 man roster although he has been productive.

Wide Receivers:  Michael Crabtree is off the “PUP” (physically unable to perform) list but did not play.  Braylon Edwards still is not being targeted at a high level at all. The “first stringers”  Ted Ginn Jr. and Joshua Morgan played well today.  Ginn has been finally making plays as we all hoped he would do for a long time now.  (really since being drafted out of Ohio State, he was looking like a bust, so we will see.) Kyle Williams continues to grow and showed he deserves a roster spot while Ronald Johnson struggled and lost a ball in tight coverage that was intercepted.  I could see Johnson not making the 53 man roster.

Offensive Linemen:  Former Pro Bowler Jonathan Goodwin made his first start at center.  We will see if he becomes a mainstay at the position as he ought to be. Otherwise, rookies such as Chase Beeler and others received playing time in this last preseason game and the line held their own against the Chargers pass rush who only managed one sack.

Fullbacks:  Moran Norris actually caught a pass in the flat for a four yard gain.  He opened up some nice holes and helped the Niners punch the ball in the end zone. Rookie Bruce Miller, the who converted to a FB from LB has looked good so far.  I don’t know that Jack Corcoran will make the team.

Defensive Line and Linebackers:  This was one of the real bright spots during the game.  The 49ers totaled 6 sacks on the night to only 1 by the Chargers.  Rookie OLB Aldon Smith was allowed to hone his skills doing what he does best… rushing the passer.  Smith was credited for 2.5 sacks for a combined loss of 22 yards and was tied for the games lead in tackles, 6 and one assist.  ILB Navarro Bowman (taking over the starting ILB position in replacement of departed Takeo Spikes) only recorded one tackle, but it was a sack and forced fumble that the Niners recovered.  Antwan Applewhite and Larry Grant (who played for the Rams last year) looked good as 2nd teamers and each tallied 4 tackles and 2 assists.  Applewhite also recorded half a sack.  Demarcus Dobbs continues to get pressure on the QB as well and will see regular playing time.  When there are bright spots there are also problems as Keaton Kristick (back-up to Patrick Willis) sustained a leg injury and was carted off the field.  No news to my knowledge of his status.

Defensive backs:  Not the best game for our secondary as Chargers QB Phillip Rivers did not play, but the Niners allowed an undrafted rookie Quarterback to throw for 226 yards with a completion percentage of 69.6.  QB Scott Tolzien formerly of the Wisconsin Badgers had a good thing going to Chargers WR Laurent Robinson who caught 6 passes for 120 yards.  Tolzien even threw the games only touchdown pass to Seyi Ajirotutu with less than 2 minutes to play that made it 17-20.  My reaction to that is WHO?  I know who Tolzien is, he led the Badgers to a great year and a BCS Bowl.  But Robinson and what??? Ajirotutu?  If you have heard these names, let me know.  Niners were lucky that Ryan Mathews only had one breakout run as he sprinted past the Niners secondary and went to the house.  I can’t remember whether it was Donte Whitner or Madieu Williams that Mathews ran by like he was standing still.  On to better things, former Charger C.J. Spillman also had the tie for game tackle totals with 5 solos and 2 assists.  Spillman has been making plays on special teams and in a relief corner/safety role.  Spillman and rookie Chris Culliver both broke up passes in the game.  I am very happy with Culliver so far as he is maybe the best looking defensive back the Niners have drafted in years (this early on that is).  

Coach: Jim Harbaugh continues to have his hands full, but seems to be on his way to implementing the West Coast Offense as short passes tonight seemed to be an extension of the running game.  QB Smith looked smooth, the running backs got it done with style, and the offensive line showed promise with Goodwin at center.  Hopefully he (Goodwin) really is a team player that helps shore up the Niners biggest issue as a team… pass blocking.

Prediction:  I see 9-7 this year based on the Niners sched which espn says is the third easiest in the NFL. What really helps the Niners is that the majority of divisional games are in the latter half of the season with the exception being the upcoming showdown in week 1 with the Hawks. This allows the Niners to jell especially on the offensive line before the games that are most important. Seriously tho… we get the Bengals, Cowboys, Lions, Browns, Redskins all with losing records last year (wouldn’t be surprised if we see that the Lions are real tough customers this year). Also the Eagles, Bucks, Ravens, Steelers, and Giants are the only teams we play that had winning records. I see the Rams as the team to beat in the NFC West this year and the Hawks and Cardinals sliding. There will be no 0-5 start this year for the Niners. Last year, the schedule was front-loaded with difficult match-ups that any team would have had difficulty with.

Stay strong Niners Faithful!

I’m out – The Fraz

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49ers vs Bengals, Harbaugh pull your head out of your butt

Just real simple here… Niners vs Bengals is a battle between two teams who desire to return to meaning something in the NFL.  The Bengals have been in the headlines for the Carson Palmer ‘trade me now’ issues but have Andy Dalton starting at QB who could soon look much better than Alex Smith.  Bengals also have been known for recent Ochocinco chatter and he is no longer with the team.  Instead the newest best WR in the game could be AJ Green.  This definitely looks better to me than the Niners Crabtree who might play this week, but is always hurt and is a proven DIVA!  Remember also that Braylon Edwards had knee surgery this past week and is reported to be out for four weeks.  Joshua Morgan and Ted Ginn Jr. are playing better but need to be in Alex Smith’s sights much more often to help the team.  Vernon Davis has a current beef with Niner’s coach Jim Harbaugh regarding his offensive assignments… blocking vs pass catching.  very interesting.  Frank Gore is rumored to be declining rapidly and needs to go for close to 100 yards or more to show he is worthy of his new contract.  OR Harbaugh has a choice to lean on rookie Kendall Hunter and Anthony Dixon.  Niners fans would like to find out if this is a run blocking issue or a Frank Gore issue.  If Hunter can go for 4 yards a carry then our question is answered for at least one week.  Frank Gore is averaging around 2.5 yards a carry through 2 games.  We have to wonder how Gore’s hip is after the injury last year.  I believe the local media is mis-reporting Gore’s condition.  They (95.7 the game who I love)  are generally saying Gore is coming off of hip surgery.  I remember one of the biggest off-season stories as Gore’s doctors recommended to him that his hip will heal naturally and that is what Gore chose.  There was no surgery.  Am I wrong?  Still Gore looks slow.  One of the biggest beefs to that is the O-line has not been opening up holes.  Niners O-line so far looks like they have never played together.  I expect the coaches esp Tom Rathman to shore that up quickly.  Alex will not survive.  So What?  Yeah I wanna see Colin Kaepernick too… but seriously?  Lets see him in week 14 or 15!  Tough it out Alex!

Niners D vs Bengals O… I like the new Niners secondary, even though they almost gave a touchdown up to a ROOK that had never caught a pass before (last week in the Cowboys game.)  I think it was Madieu Williams who was beat by the speedy wide receiver in the open field.  Tackles have to be made.  Aldon Smith and Justin Smith will have to be better utilized.  Aldon is going to have to learn to cover the middle of the field as well as pass rushing.  He can do it.  Cedrick Benson will hopefully be too smoked as he gets his clock rung by Parys Haralson, Navarro Bowman and Patrick Willis.  Aldon Smith and Justin Smith ought to stop Benson in the back-field.  As for Dalton… bring pressure, get hits, the Smiths, Willis and McDonald should slow him down.  Niners secondary needs to continue to play at a high Collegiate level.  LOL.  If they can do this, Dalton throws for 2 INTs on the day.  Tremaine Brock got one last week.  I would like to see Terrel Brown intercept Dalton this week.

Just real simple… I’m looking forward to a bad team to beat another bad team on the road…. Niners 27, Bengals 20.

Harbaugh c’mon pull your head out of your butt…

 

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just a quick SF Giants Post!

Bay Area!

 

Damn,  I’m sure the A’s could have beaten the FRIKEN YANKMEES oops.  Fact is the Tigers (who beat the Yankees in 4 and the A’s in 5) are waiting when you G-men top the Cards… no matter how you do it…  There is a Bay Area Rivalry right now that will be special for years to come.  Let’s go Timmie!

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My Completely Objective (yeah right) NBA Western Conference 2013 Playoff Seeding Projections

Now that the NBA free agency period has mostly wrapped up and major trades are likely over, it is time to look at how the Golden State Warriors stack up in the West.

The big news of yesterday was… Howard to the Lakers for Bynum and a protected first rounder and Igoudala to the Nuggets for Afflalo, Harrington and another protected first to Orlando.  This changes the NBA landscape.  On sports radio, I have heard comments regarding the sad state of our Warriors franchise and how this does nothing but hurt our chances this year.  Across the board it is the same whether it is 95.7 the Game, KNBR 680, or Fox sports radio.  Seriously, this is stretching it a bit.  The Lakers and Nuggets were already better than our Warriors before this trade went down, as evidenced by the fact that both teams made the playoffs last year.  On the other hand, what happens a few years from now with the Lakers as the core enters “father-time”  could be fun for Warriors fans to watch.  The Lakers basically have traded away all first round picks in the next 4 years.  Interesting.

Ok… moving on.  I see the Western Conference the way many do for this upcoming season.  The top 6 teams in the Conference are all considered to be locks for the playoffs, barring some unforeseen injuries.  These teams are the Thunder, Spurs, Lakers, Clippers, Grizzlies, and Nuggets.  These teams have stayed either the same for the most part or in the case of the Lakers and Nuggets, have improved. This leaves 6 teams who have the opportunity to fill the last two spots in the playoffs for the West.  I would say that the teams that are out for sure are the Rockets, although I will be rooting for them with Jeremy Lin, the Kings, and the Hornets.  I know the Hornets are reloading, but it is too early to expect them to leapfrog half the conference into the playoffs.

1.  Top seed goes to the Thunder.  The team is unchanged as far as I can tell, but with this nucleus of players growing after the experience of making it to the finals, we can only expect greatness.  I have been expecting Durant to show himself to be the best player in the NBA for the last couple of years, and he didn’t quite beat out Lebron or Kobe yet.  The scoring title for Durant was a nice accolade for him, but he has a bit more to do on the defensive end as well as the pure want and desire to win that Lebron showed in the Finals.  This team is possibly the most balanced team in the NBA with a great scoring point in Westbrook, a superstar in his own right, Durant, Harden, the sixth man of the year, Ibaka, a beast in the paint who is still learning the offensive game, and Sefolosha as the lockdown wing defender/three point specialist.  The Thunder added a very interesting player that could be a homeless man’s Durant in Perry Jones.  Coach Scotty Brooks out-coached Popovich of the Spurs in my opinion and came close to figuring out how to down the Heat.  The sky is the limit for this team.

2.  The next seed is hard to predict, but I will give it to the Lakers.  Now that Dwight Howard is in and Bynum is out, without having to give up Gasol, the Lakers are going to be scary this year.  There are questions galore with this team, and Hollywood will have a great time dreaming up fairy tale endings.  They have the talent to win Kobe a 6th ring and tie the Celtics for the most NBA Championships all time.  The problems all start with chemistry.  Kobe and Nash have always been rivals.  Howard is just as much a head case as Bynum.  Any team with MWP has potential to have issues.  The Lakers reloaded in a big way that put them around 100M salary for this coming year, when the Luxury Tax cuts in at 73M.  This just wasn’t supposed to happen any more.  A couple of weeks ago I was laughing at this bench, but after adding Jamison and resigning Hill, the bench doesn’t look so bad anymore.  Rookies from this draft, Johnson-Odom and Sacre certainly don’t hurt.  I think this team has the best chance of taking the crown away from King James.  I don’t put them in the top seed, and even considered slotting them lower due to the fact it may take a whole season to jell before the Lakers reach their full potential see Heat of 10-11.

3.  Spurs.  This is one of the most amazing teams in the NBA.  Poppovich is the best coach in the NBA if you ask me.  He has the ability to get everything out of his players and change strategies on the fly.  Last season, this team went from one of the lower scoring teams in the NBA to one of the highest scoring teams, while finishing with a .750 record.  Even though the Thunder and Brooks outplayed them for the right to play in the Finals, this was an amazing team down the stretch last year.  Duncan, who is now a Spur for life still has game and the team is morphing around him to remain highly effective.  Even without Ginobli for the majority of the year, the Spurs just rolled.  Parker was a huge part of this excellence as he had one of his most productive years yet.  The Spurs are continuing to reload as well as Leonard, last years first rounder acq’d via trade from the Pacers, fits the team perfectly as a defender at multiple positions who also fits in perfectly with the offense Pop ran last year.  The Spurs did not have a first round pick this year.  This is not a Championship contender this year in my mind, but they will be one of the best in the West.

4.  Grizzlies.  This is just an old school type of team.  They can pound the ball in the paint with Marc Gasol and Randolph.  Both are tough rebounders as well.  They have one of the best small forwards in the game in Gay.  Gay can do a bit of everything, as he gets to the rim for monster dunks, can drain the three, and plays D on the perimeter.  Gay was one of my favorite fantasy players last year.  What is amazing about this team is the ability to absorb an injury to a major contributor, as Gay and Randolph have sustained injuries that cost them a large part of the season in the last two years.  The Grizz largely seemed unaffected.  What can this team do with a healthy season and healthy playoff run?  This offseason, they let Mayo get away who was a decent 6th man at times, but this is not a huge loss as he has under-performed as much as he helped.  Bayless comes in from Toronto this year and is a player that can do things to really help this team at the 1 or the 2.  They have starters those positions who are outstanding 2 way players in Allen and Conley.  Adding Wroten in the draft gives them another multi-talented guard who specializes in getting to the rim.  This team if healthy could finally have a long playoff run.

5.  Nuggets.  The addition of Igoudala makes this team very interesting.  I remember this team as the team that nearly knocked off the Lakers in the playoffs last year.  Subtract only Afflalo and Harrington and add Igoudala… so you lose some scoring, but you add a playmaker and a defender.  As far as I am concerned, Igoudala can guard darn near anyone in the NBA.  If Chandler can play the 3 with Igoudala at the 2, then you have a team that can really defend the perimeter.  Special PGs in Miller, resigned for a great deal at 3mil per for 3 years, and Lawson, who tore up the Lakers D in the playoffs, add to the interesting mix of this team.  Gallinari is a player I was not high on before last season, but I found I was impressed last year.  The question is… can he be an effective starter as a stretch 4 instead of the 3?  With Igoudala or Chandler at the 3, it could work… on the other hand, start Igoudala at the 2, Chandler comes off the bench, Gallinari starts at the 3, and let second year stud Faried start at the 4.  When you have the potentially improving McGee starting at the 5, this rounds out to be a very solid team.  If this couldn’t be any better, the top European prospect, Fournier was drafted by the Nuggets this year.  He is playing with them this year, and is a multi-talented large guard.  Coach Karl may finally have a roster that can rival his great Sonics teams of years past.

Here is where it gets interesting…

6.  Clippers.  This is a team that is going to have injury problems this year.  Their once hopeful Olympic 4, Griffin recently reinjured the same knee that kept him out of his rookie year.  Word is he will be ready for the start of the season, but don’t count on it.  Paul, considered the best point in the game by many, is showing his age as he has knee issues as well and other ailments that pop up from time to time.  Paul really isn’t that old, but he plays slow and gimpy at times.  It seems he does his best Kobe to play through things, but how much better is he and the team when he is healthy?  Billups comes back at a great price and can still play… if healthy.  He tore up his knee last year in a season ending injury.  Jordan is a nice 5 who is an athletic shot-blocker.  Caron Butler might start at the 3, while newly acquired Grant Hill could push to be the starter.  Clips did reload nicely with the addition of 6th man Crawford who played with the Blazers last year, as well as taking a chance on Odom.  Clips had no first rounder this year.  The upside of this team could be very high with health, but I just don’t see this team improving this year.

7.  Warriors.  Another team with injury issues galore.  On the other hand, this team is loaded and deep. There are no true stars here, but when healthy, they have one of the better starting lineups in the West.  The big difference this year is Bogut acquired in trade at the deadline last year from the Bucks for fan fave Ellis.  Additionally, the new ownership has stocked this team with more big bodies than they have had in my memory.  Starting with 7 footer Bogut, a 3rd team all NBA player in 09, they have the rebounding and interior defense that has been sorely lacking for this team in recent years.  Bogut has had 3 devastating injuries in his career.  A broken elbow sustained during a fast break dunk a few years ago still seems to bother his shooting, although it is his off-hand.  He had a major back issue that he missed games for, then last year, he broke his ankle and was injured at the time of the trade.  He is expected to play for the first time for the Warriors when the season starts, day 1.  Curry, the franchise face, is a sweet shooting point who has had a nasty recurring ankle sprain issue.  Curry is widely considered one of the best shooters in the NBA.  At the 2 is another of the best young shooters in the game in Thompson.  He started for the Warriors after the Ellis trade and quickly made a name for himself.  Rush,  a valuable long range shooting 6th man for the team last year has the ability to play the 2 or 3 and could start, most likely at the 3 until the team deems Rookie Barnes ready.  Barnes was a steal is some people’s mind to drop to the Warriors in the draft, but in Summer League play he has looked shaky at times.  Lee is a pick and roll or pick and pop scoring machine who can work very well with Curry.  Lee’s issue is defense which the addition of Bogut should really help.  Landry and Jack are other off-season acquisitions who help with depth at the 4 and 1 respectively.  They played together last year with the Hornets, and also for asst. coach Milone while he was with the Hornets the year before.  In addition to Barnes, the Warriors drafted big man Ezeli with the pick they got from the Spurs.  Ezeli is very raw, but is a major presence on the defensive end.  I can’t say how healthy this team will be, but with some luck, this depth and some chemistry should propel this team into the playoffs for the first time since 07.

8.  Timberwolves.  It is hard for me to figure whether they are better than the Warriors, but this is likely to be a playoff team.  With Kevin Love, who is on the Olympic team and is a baller, there is a chance for this to be a very impressive team…  Last year PG Rubio, a former European star, blew out his knee after having a stellar start to the season.  The chemistry of Rubio and Love was special.  Now with Rubio healthy again, this has to be one of the most interesting teams in the NBA.  Add to that signings of Roy, who sat out a year due to knee injuries, and Kirelinko who played in the Euroleague last year and is tearing up the Olympics for Russia right now, and this is going to be fun to watch.  A countryman of Kirelinko’s, Shved, has also been signed.  Shved is a large combo guard who can really play and is also torching it with Russia’s Olympic squad.  Add in an emerging quality 5 in Pekovic and the Wolves have a multinational team with great promise… if healthy.  They did not have a first round draft pick, but brought in some quality players here on the fly.  The only reason I put them here is that the Wolves have so many new pieces and young players that need to jell.  Oh yeah, and the Warriors are my team of course.  So there we go.

Mavericks…  Nowitzki is the premier stretch 4 in the game, but Love of the Wolves is very close on his heels.  Nowitzki is aging and was less effective last year.  The pieces around him are now subpar as the team is hoping for the big time free agent fish, but haven’t been able to reel it in.  Mavs lost out on Deron Williams and Howard this year, and they signed mediocre players to short deals to be ready with cap space again this next year.  Kaman, Mayo, and Collison are all likely to be new starters for the team while the returning starters are Nowitzki and Marion.  Marion as well as Nowitzki are both aging but outstanding players.  Kaman is aging as well and injury prone.  In recent years, Kaman has been injured every bit as much as the Warrior’s Bogut.  Kaman is a nice defensive player and decent rebounder, but is an inefficient offensive player who turns the ball over at a nasty pace. Mayo was an underperfoming 6th man for the Grizz in the past years, who became expendable.  Collison is a point who really is just not very good at much at all.  The teams depth consists of many rookies and subpar players.

Trailblazers…  I could be wrong about this team.  Playoffs are possible, but they are rebuilding.  They have an All-Star in Aldridge who is a tough 4 who can score and defend.  The problems I have with this team is the youth and Batum, a young athletic average 3, who they resigned for way too much money.  Other than that, I think they got the best pick in the draft in Lillard.  A point guard who can score from anywhere, Lillard played at tiny Weber St.  People question whether his game can translate to the NBA, but I expect him to be an All-Star year in, year out once he develops.  I also love Leonard, a raw 5 they drafted with their other first round pick.  I see the Blazers as one of the Warriors true rivals and don’t want them to do well.  Give them a year or two, and they will be back in the playoffs again every year.

Suns…  Losing Nash really hurt them.  It was inevitable.  They are taking the right track with young players at this time and have some guys I like.  Markieff Morris was drafted last year as a tough rebounding stretch 4.  Luis Scola came in after being amnestied by Houston.  Goran Dragic is a reasonable replacement for Nash, considering the rebuild mindset.  Kendall Marshall, a PG was their draft pick.  He is regarded as a pass first point with great court vision.  This could be a fun team to watch, but there is just not enough talent.

Rockets…  Lin could score 30… in fact I expect him to do so at least a couple of times this year.  There is not much else on this team.  Rookies and more rookies as they, like the Mavs, swung and missed on Howard this year.

Jazz…  Many expect the Jazz to compete for a playoff spot.  Mo Williams is not the answer at the point.  Hayward is a developing 2, but is just not that good.  The other Williams, Marvin, acq’d from the Hawks is a big 3 who I really don’t like that much.  The frontcourt is nice, but Al Jefferson is only a scorer at the 5.  He doesn’t defend.  I love Millsap, but he is getting older… Favors can look up to him as a perfect mentor.  Favors is special.  This team is not as good as it was last year.

Kings… Nice players.  Bad team.  Freddette did not pan out last year as their early draft selection, but the last pick in the draft… one Isiah Thomas is a little spark plug of a point that made the all rookie team.  This team is fun to watch, but has much growing to do.  Cousins, the 5, is another Bynum.  All the talent, but a head-case.  Their first rounder this year, Robinson, is a beast.  As an undersized 4, he is a baller.  He just out muscles and out works his opponent.  Hopefully, he can do that in the pros as well.  The biggest question for this team may be… can they figure out how to properly use former ROY Tyreke Evans?  He is a great talent who has been used at the 1, 2 and 3.  Nothing has worked right for him and the team yet.

Hornets… I did not like their draft.  Haha I know… Unibrow.  I am not a supporter.  He is just too thin for me.  He could end up being a nice player, but he would be an undersized Tyson Chandler at best.  Rivers… he wants to be Kobe, but is more like Jamal Crawford at the best.  I do really like Gordon.  For his sake, I wish he signed with Pheonix.  It’s going to take time for this team to get anywhere… In the mean time, more lottery picks!

Thanks for reading, this was fun.

The Fraz

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Golden State Warriors and the free agent waiting period

As Warriors fans, we all have questions.

Kent Bazemore will apparently be signed to a 2 year partially guaranteed contract.  What does this mean if  anything to Brandon Rush’s likelihood to stay?

Are we still in the market for Carl Laundry or Kevin Martin?  All signs point to yes… but they both would like to play for contenders or get more money than is being offered by the Dubs.

What does Laundry or Martin mean for McGuire’s chance to remain with the Warriors?

Let me start with some numbers on McGuire that surprised me.

According to 82games.com, McGuire was an equally offensive (ie terrible) player whether playing offense or defense.  With him on the court, the opposing team scored 1.9 points per 100 possessions less with him on the court than when he was off the court.  This is not surprising, as we expect his presence to be felt on the defensive end.  However, on the offensive side of the floor, his team was even worse than the opposing team as the Warriors scored 3.5 points less per 100 possessions while he was on the court.  This equates to a cumalative -1.6 points per 100 possessions that were lost while he was on the floor.  Considering that McGuire played a large portion of his time against second unit players, I do not consider his worth to be very high anymore.  The signing of Kent Bazemore could eliminate the need for McGuire completely.

According to Marcus Thompson III, Kent Bazemore doesn’t affect the ability to bring back Brandon Rush.  I do not disagree.  There are interesting articles recently that say Rush will most likely be back with the Warriors, and it is only a matter of time.

Laundry seems to want to be a Warrior, while the Warriors’ only competition could be the Bobcats.  Laundry will have to make up his mind to take more money from the Bobcats, or help a team to win, as in the Warriors.

Martin seems to be a player that has too many injury concerns although for the period of time he is healthy, he could be a great fit for the team.  It seems to me that Laundry is a better fit right now, although 2 or 3 years ago, I would have sided with Martin in a heartbeat.

Something interesting to consider is that Richard Jefferson previously played with KMart on the Nets with Jason Kidd, and Jarret Jack previously played with Carl Laundry and Chris Paul on the Hornets.  These are both very interesting side stories.  I find it more interesting that Jack, the point guard more recently played with Laundry than Jefferson and KMart playing years ago with a PG that won’t be here.

Hmmm….. Laundry it is for me.  Not KMart, not McGuire.  Of course we need Rush back, and I would like to see the Warriors Rush to get it done.

-the Fraz

 

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Frank Gore is your fantasy RB? Really?

Please don’t blindly love Gore. The days are done that he is the bellcow.   Some of us Niner’s fans seem peeved that he is considered a “do not draft.”  I am not one of them.

Most importantly, the Niners added 3 (Rock Cartwright as well) RBs to the group and haven’t subtracted any as of yet. I see Anthony Dixon having a very hard time making the team.

However, Gore has a ton of competition in James, Hunter, Jacobs etc. I cannot see Gore getting his career avg touches of 16.5 much less the regular 20 touches some expect.  There is no way the Niners let the other RBs sit and waste their talent.

The other thing to consider is that Gore signed a 3 year extension prior to last year. I would love him to be available for the duration of his contract. We will never know if that is possible, but by going to RB by committee, we give Gore the best chance to be around in 2013 and beyond.

Hopefully the Niners figure out how to open the holes so that each of these backs can have some success. They all do things a bit different from each other. Having Gore and James or Jacobs and Gore, or Jacobs and Hunter or some other 2 back combination could be something we see often this year. I would expect that to work very well.

Remember also that Gore is the only Niners back we have seen reliably pass block. Maybe Jacobs can also in our system. Gore as a pass blocker is one of the reasons he didn’t catch many passes last year. Another reason is he dropped quite a bunch thrown his way.

I love Gore. The problem is that 29-30 is the end of life for most RBs. I will not blindly love Gore. Apparently the Niners do not either, considering recent additions who will get touches as well.
He is at the top of the do not draft list because he has been a top performer for his career that will not continue to out perform.

Niner’s fans, it’s about winning games.  ”Goring” the opponents may be done.

-the Fraz

Posted in NFL, San Francisco 49ers, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wright for anything? Even a second rounder?

This is an old write up that I wrote before the Dubs traded Wright for Jack…  just some thoughts that came to something of fruition.  Nice.

1. Moving Wright for a second rounder and cap space = YES. The problem is that the GM has told us D Wright is the incumbent starter for this season. That may be his way of building up value for Wright in the same way it was rumored the Dubs built up value for Ellis at the beginning of last year. I sure hope so. I’m quite sure Coach would rather start Rush, Mcguire, R Jeff or Barnes at the three than Dwrongway.
One problem with this is that the Dubs will likely want to see how Barnes works in the preseason before considering a trade to weaken the already loaded small forward postion.(did I really write that? What am I smoking?)
Truth is there are 4 or 5 that might be on the roster that can play the position. As of right now, the best choice to start at the three could be the backup at the 2, Brandon Rush.
Do not forget that there is NO ONE to back up Klay Thompson at the 2 other than Rush right now, and of course, Rush is a RFA.
Also, what really is DWright’s market value? He is an expiring contract of about 4mil, so that is attractive, but there are likely limited trading partners and the Dubs FO may want to wait til the trade deadline to make it happen.

2. What if Rush gets signed elsewhere? We are F*CKED.

No kidding.

The question becomes, who of the other low level FA guards can we get? We need someone who can back up the 1 and the 2. Resign Nate Robinson? Yeah. Its like that. Everyone seems to forget THERE IS NO ONE TO BACKUP KLAY OTHER THAN RUSH. Can Day Glo Nate do it? Yeah, but that’s really not ideal in any way.
Can Delonte West do it? Yes, but I would rather he was an option in addition to Rush. If we had Jenkins, West, and Rush as bench options for the 1 and 2 I would be reasonably confidant going into the season. People seem to be concerned with West’s mental makeup. He was fined 25k for giving Gordon Heyward a wet willy in a game late last season. That’s hella funny to me, but only cause West wasn’t on our team.
Seriously, I know what West can bring to this team, and he is a great role player in a backup role at the 1/2. The word is that the FO (front office) doesn’t want to take a chance on adding mental headaches to our team…

That’s reasonable considering the “junkgate” episodes we have had to deal with recently. I do think that Delonte West would give the team the scrappy reserve guard that we have not had.

I am in disagreement with recent articles that say that the Dubs are only looking for high character players. You sign the guys that help you win.

You all have seen the Steinmetz article stating that players such as West, Arenas, and others are not likely to be brought in due to their character issues. It’s too late to think that way.

If you haven’t seen this article posted on CSN Bay Area then here is the link http://www.csnbayarea.com/basketball-golden-state-warriors/warriors-talk/So-far-Warriors-are-on-periphery-of-free?blockID=734106&feedID=279

I have to quote this and disagree… “They traded Stephen Jackson for Richard Jefferson months ago, and even accepted an extra year on Jefferson’s deal. The reason was because the Warriors didn’t want to bring a volatile veteran like Jackson onto their young team.

“While that’s a tough strategy to criticize, the logical extension is that they’re most likely not interested in players such as Kenyon Martin, J.R. Smith, Reggie Evans or Delonte West.”

I disagree with the ownership,and I am criticizing them. The team has had their share of sexual lawsuits recently and too juicy information.

The Dubs could really use this FA advise… Resign Rush. Bring in West. Resign McGuire. Done.

West has a reputation as a tough, physical defender who has some attitude issues. The Warriors could really use an undervalued spark like him.

We want to win right? Mark Jackson will start accepting the type of questionable character guys that are in his image. Delonte West could be the kind of player Coach Jackson wants to take under his wing, to develop the professional attitude for the NBA.

The tougher FA’s that the Warrior’s desire are all going to be in the list of “Kenyon Martin, J.R. Smith, Reggie Evans or Delonte West.” from csnbayarea link.

Posted in Golden State Warriors, NBA, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Golden State Warriors Free Angency: How to reach the Postseason

I have issue with the Warriors direction in free agency.

Andre Miller resigned with the Nuggets for 9mil over 3 years.

Kirk Hinrich signed with the Bulls for 6mil over 2 years.

Jason Kidd signed with the Knicks for 9mil over 3 years.

Chauncey Billups singed with the Clippers for 4.3 mil for a one year contract.

I don’t have a problem with letting Brandon Roy sign with the Timberwolves for 10.4 mil over 2 years.  Who knows if that is a reasonable contract?

The above looks much like one of Matt Steinmetz’s recent articles.  You can find it here at http://www.csnbayarea.com/basketball-golden-state-warriors/warriors-talk/Warriors-Troubling-signs-in-free-agency?blockID=737464&feedID=2799I am not one to steal.  I just agree with him.

Now that the best mid level PGs have signed with other teams, the biggest hole in the Warriors line-up has become more of a major issue.  Oh, don’t forget, the Warriors have not signed anyone yet in free agency.  Owner Joe Lacab has come out and stated that the team really doesn’t have the full mid-level exemption to use in free agency, rather it is 3-4 million that can be used before they go over the luxury tax. (bye the way, every player above signed a deal worth 3 mil a year with the exception of Brandon Roy and Chauncey Billups.  I would think we could have had a Miller, a Hinrich, a Kidd etc if our GM was really so good as an agent turned GM.)

It is my understanding that going over the luxury tax is a 1 to 1 proposition.  In other words, if they spend 1 million over the luxury tax, they owe 1 million back to the league.  I think they could afford that if it would help them win.  I don’t care if it is 5 mil over due to a trade.  I say do it if you want to win.

The current predicament is due to a few interesting and debatable decisions in the last year.  We could go back further to the previous ownership, but why do that when everything could have been fixed by the current ownership?

1.  Andris Biedrins.  He is owed approx 9 mil a year for the next two years.  He provides nothing on the court that we wouldn’t expect a half-way decent #30 pick at his position in the draft to do.  Namely, Festus Ezeli.  Ezeli will likely out block, out score and out rebound Biedrins this year while making 1/10th the money.  This is a sad story considering the Dubs could have Amnestied Biedrins last year, instead of wasting it on a 4mil, 1 year contract of Charlie Bell.  There were enough reasons to just void Bell’s contract as he had a DUI and showed up for court drunk.  If they couldn’t void it, they could just buy him out.  What they did smells of bad decision making and possibly cheap accounting.

2.  The trade that brought in Andrew Bogut.  I liked the trade in principal, but two things stood out in my mind as major problems.  The first was including Ekpe Udoh in the deal.  The man was one of the best +/- players on the Warriors.  If you read enough of my posts, you will find out that stat is one of my favorites.  According to 82games.com, last year Udoh was a +11 in net points per 100 possessions ie on the court vs off the court stats.  That is an amazing stat.  The Dubs outscored their opponents by 3.5 points when he was on the court and were outscored by 7.5 points when he was off the court.  Insane.  How do you trade that player?  In addition to this, we took back Steven Jackson who was making something in the range of 9 mil a year?  And gave up  Monta Ellis?  How does this trade work?  In the end, we trade Jackson for Richard Jefferson who is making the 11 mil a year plus has another year on his contract over Jackson’s?  This is the second problem, it’s insane.  We just crippled ourselves for another 2 years in the salary cap.  This was not a deal that had to be done.  Now, I am very happy to have Bogut, but the instant he goes down to injury, I am boooooing the Dubs ownership,  not Bogut.

Well then the question is, how would we ever have acquired our franchise center?  Ok.  Gotcha.  Roll with the punches.  What is done is done.

Where we are is that there are only certain players that fit the amount our Dubs can spend.  Lets figure out first where we need help.

The current roster excluding our own RFA (one Brandon Rush) and our FAs (Nate Robinson and Dominique McGuire) looks like this…

PG Steph Curry, Charles Jenkins

SG Klay Thompson

SF Dorrel Wright, Harrison Barnes, Richard Jefferson, Chris Wright

PF David Lee, Jeremy Tyler, Dramond Green (I put him here due to rebounding numbers as a 4 in college)

C Andrew Bogut, Festus Ezeli, Andris Biedrins.

There are some players that can play multiple positions such as Curry who could slide to the 2 depending on the FA PG we bring in.  R Jeff and C Wright could slide to the 4 depending on the matchup.  Green could absolutely play some 3 against less athletic 3s.  As a LAST RESORT Tyler and Lee could play  5 as they have before.  Do I want Tyler or Lee at the 5?  No.  However, as a second unit 5, Tyler was not terrible last year.

Ok.  So we see our roster has some flexibility.  Lee has played 5 much of his career.  That is one of the reasons he has been considered an under-performing big man for much of his career.  Lee has been given the job of guarding larger big men.  That’s not his fault.  Tyler might be a bit better equipped to guard a second unit 5 than Lee would be to guard Dwight Howard, as he did last year.  Guess what?  If Bogut stays healthy, he is the man.  I’m on board with Bogut.  I need to be.  The Dubs gave up so much in the trade to get Bogut that if he doesn’t work out, then the plan is shot.  Let’s go with the plan.

Considering my belief that Bogut is our center of the future at only 27 years old (who had a +/- of +2.7 with the Bucks last year) and that he had better play at least 70 games out of 82 next year, where is our biggest hole in the lineup?

Guard.   Period.

If we don’t bring back Brandon Rush, who is an RFA, we are screwed.  The Warriors gave him an offer sheet of over 4 mil to make him an RFA.  I am not about to do the math to tell you where that sits with the Luxury Tax.  I’d rather not.  However, Bob Myers has told us and the media that Rush is a player they want to bring back and will bring back.  I sure hope so.  The only other NBA teams I have heard to have any interest are the hated LA Lakers and the Timberwolves.

The above mentioned Matt Steinmetz and I agree that the biggest hole in the roster is a combo guard.  The Warriors need someone to spell Steph Curry and play some 2.  Ideally it would be someone who could play along-side Curry to set him up for some 3s.  Let’s get to this.

I am very high on a few free agent point guards who can also play some shooting guard.  I like Delonte West quite a bit.  Here is where Steinmetz and I disagree.  He has stated that the Warriors are likely only to bring in players that are very team oriented and quality people, due to the direction ownership has decided to go in.  I would contend that winning is more important than being good people, although apparently Coach Jackson even disagrees with me.  I remember a statement he had last year about helping the players become better men even above winning ballgames.  Wait.  That is backwards to me.  You do your job first, then think about becoming a better man.  If you do your job the best you can, then you will be a better man.  It goes hand in hand, but the job is first.

That is why I love Delonte West.  He apparently has a bipolar issue and was fined by the NBA for giving Gordon Heyward a “wet willie” last year (25K).  Ok.  I’m fine with that.  As a back-up guard for the Mavs last year, he was a tough defender, although he matched up better with shooting guards than points.  He played a significant number of starters minutes and backed up Jason Kidd, who we know can’t guard anymore.  Even so, West’s +/- was only -2.7.  It could have been much worse considering that Kidd can’t guard either.  Interestingly enough, Kidd registered a +2.9 according to 82games.com.  Hey at least I am honest.  I would give a bunch of props to the players around Kidd.  Steinmetz does say that West is an unlikely signing due to his bipolar issues and other issues.  Damn I can’t even make a decent case for West.  LOL.

Keyon Dooling most recently of the Celtics.  Check out this link… http://espn.go.com/blog/boston/celtics/post/_/id/4695211/report-card-keyon-dooling

this is a very interesting Celtics viewpoint of Dooling.  This guy has bounced around the league and was a terrible defender at times during the regular season.  However, what I am looking for is a quality defender in crunch time.  From this blogger’s viewpoint, Dooling really stepped it up in the postseason after battling through injury (hip and knee issues) and brought his A game against the best competition. As well, in the locker room, he was a voice that was respected and seemed to help the Celtics stay on track.  Dooling had a terrible -17.9 +/- last year with the Celts.

Ok.  Lets get real… There are not many great backup combo guards out there.  I have a couple of other names that are also not so sexy.  With the money our Dubs have to spend, this is what we get.  This is where I could be really interested…

DJ Augustine  FA of the Bobcats… I watched this guy at Texas, years ago.  I loved his game, but I didn’t know how well it translated to the pros.  Now, yes he can get to the rim, but he consistently shoots around 40% from the field which is a killer for me.  I don’t like 40% shooters at all.  What is interesting is that although ESPN’s Hollinger says he is a bad defensive player, he was a +0.7 player in net points per 100 possessions according to 82games.com last year.  This guy is fearless, has a great handle, and can run a team.  He was one of the best players on a terrible team the last few years.  He also has started a good number of games at the point.  Do I want him?  Not really, but he is one of the best available for the price we can afford.

If you believe me, then I should tell you to stop crying.  LOL.

This is the man I want…

Jarryd Bayless who was recently made a FA by the Toronto Raptors.  This man is an improving 3 point shooter who shot over 40% last year from 3.  He knows how to get to the rim and get to the line while shooting over 85% from the free throw line.  He has an improving assist to turnover ratio, and PER.  He is still learning not to foul to much while improving his steals per game.  Just look at his stats, he is very impressive, year to year.  He has the best +/- of anyone on my list at +2.3 net points per 100 possessions per 82games.com.  He missed games last year, but played in 31 games and started 11 of those games.  When a player on the Raptors has that kind of +/- in limited opportunities and has shown improvement like Bayless has, he could be special.  If Bayless is our backup combo guard going into the season, I would feel very confident.

Worst case scenario….

Brandon Rush is signed by another team.

We pick up Delonte West and resign Dominique McGuire.  That’s it.  There is a chance with few injuries that we make the post-season but don’t go far.

Predictable scenario…

Brandon Rush is retained as well as Nate Robinson and Dominique McGuire.  We have a backup combo guard in Robinson who is explosive and reckless.  Rush is the perfect backup at the 2 and 3.  McGuire brings stability in the second unit and defense at the 3 and 4.  There is a good chance to make the playoffs and do some damage with luck and health.

Best case scenario…

Jerryd Bayless is signed as the backup combo guard.  He thrives with 15 minutes a game until Curry needs a rest.  Curry is able to be healthy throughout the season due to timely rest and is ready to go for a full postseason run.  Rush has spelled Thompson to prevent overworking the young shooting guard, and Rush also works his way into the starting lineup at times at the 3 to spell the quickly developing young rookie Harrison Barnes.

Barnes is all that we could hope for from a #7 pick and he doesn’t miss a beat as Curry figures out just where to find him, and Barnes quickly understands the defensive schemes the Dubs are using.

David Lee is himself and begins to look to pass a slight bit more, knowing on the wing are always great shooters ready to nail it.  Lee also relaxes just enough, knowing Bogut is behind him to challenge mistakes, making Lee agressive defensively for the first time.

Draymond Green fits in as a small ball 4 and sometimes 3 with the ability to play inside out, putting the ball on the floor, or hitting a 3.  Green hits the glass at both ends, and is a great second unit glue guy in the mold of McGuire except with more of an offensive focus.

Dominique McGuire does have a place as the go to wing defender that might start against Lebron James or Kevin Durant.  McGuire is the x factor for the Dubs, as Sefolosha was for the Thunder.

Bogut is healthy and can play 70-75 games in the regular season with some breaks that are legitimate due to the growth of Festus Ezeli later in the season.  The Dubs are willing to mix in Jeremy Tyler into the 5 spot in certain instances while knowing he is better suited for the 4, but giving the other big men much needed rest, and keeping Lee out of the 5 spot for good.  Yes even they know Lee is a 4 and only a 4, and Tyler has the ability to play a limited amount of 5.

Biedrins?  RJeff?  Really?  Do we need them?  D Wright?  That’s 24mil on the books that I did not account for.  LOL… and I think I got us to the second round of the playoffs!  Ok, one can dream.

-the Fraz

 

 

Posted in Golden State Warriors, NBA, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

this is just one of my favorite Steven A. Smith posts of all time.

http://espn.go.com/espnradio/play?id=7098381]

discussing the NBA lockout last year.

If you read my posts and find them hard to follow, tell me this…

How did the final decision affect the NBA Champ Heat vs. the Golden St. Warriors… feels like the Yankees won over the A’s?  Use your imagination a bit?  lol.

That was an intentionally somewhat loaded question.  Was the NBA draft rigged?  So was this… Did you stop beating your wife yet?  Wow…  David Stern is doing his best to be the biggest headliner this year.  Stern = Goodell?

I like stern, david lol… stern commissioners that are not afraid to put a mark on their sport.

Someone who is afraid to leave a visible MARK?  MLB’s Bud Selig.  I wonder how visible a mark it is on the 2010 Champion Giants to value the SF South Bay more in the favor of the Oakland A’s who originally made a mistake by offering the territory in a deal to prevent the  A’s from moving to Florida.  Ouch.

I’ve given away a bit of my loyalty… to my heart.  I don’t post that much about my A’s but I’m off to see them play the Bo Sox on the 3rd for fireworks day…. will have a post up with pics about it.

Badass… bay area sports are starting to get hardcore again…. lol

Posted in Golden State Warriors, MLB, NBA, NBA Lockout, Oakland Athletics, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

My Letter to the GSWs re: Steph Curry/PGx…. #1 (for fun)

Steph Curry.
I’m happy with what Steph has been saying about his recovery lately. He says he tried to come back last summer too quickly on his ankles. Now he has much more patience, working with the trainers and has checkpoints with the doctors. Only after passing tests, does he move on to the next step in his training. I have some faith that he can become more reliable and less injury prone. Lets hope so. I do want him to take a couple games off here and there and not play more than 35 min a game.
In addition, now it seems that the hole in the lineup is a combo guard that can spell Steph and play next to him in the lineup at times to set him up as a 2. I like that Steinmetz has the same idea. He seems to like Andre Miller and I do too, but he made more than 8 mil last year and probably is not available at the MLE the Dubs have (5mil?)

I do love the idea of bringing in Brandon Roy even tho he has problems with the cartilage in his knees. Interestingly, Kobe seems to find a way to continue to play with the same issue. Kobe has used a procedure that seems to be borderline illegal… high plasma blood injections (can’t remember the official name of this.) Hopefully for Roy, he is looking into the same kind of new medical breakthroughs. This particular procedure has been shown to allow knee cartilage to regrow quickly.

Another name is Chauncey Billups. He only made 2 mil with the Clippers last year if what the internet tells me is correct lol. That’s amazing for a former NBA Finals MVP… I would love to have Billups on the Warriors even tho he had the ACL tear last year. Word is he is not retiring and wants to play more. I could see him playing 20-25 min a game with the Warriors at the 1 and 2. He could take a back seat and come off the bench, I would think. His leadership and game would be huge.

Steinmetz also seems to like the Hawks FA PG Hinrich as well, but I really don’t. He can shoot the three a bit, but has been injured as well with less upside than Miller or Billups. Quite a bit less.

I like the idea of bringing in Aaron Brooks who played last year in China but is currently property of the Suns. The Suns offered him a qualifying offer of around 4 mil. I remember Brooks with the Rockets a few years ago and he was fearless going to the rack. The Dubs could really use that for the team now in a change of pace PG. Whether he still has that in his game now, I don’t know.

Thoughts on fa’s at point or other?

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Damian Lillard for the Warriors at #7?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UyFJOEjZPFw this was a shooting exhibition for the Kings. Count the missed shots… maybe 2, 3? This includes midrange and threes moving without the ball and with the ball. Also you will see cone work with dribble penetration. I know there are no defenders here, but the kid looks great. Also see http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Damian-Lillard-6152/ This is an odd but nice look at Lillard. Jeff Teague Ronnie Price are mentioned as his ceiling and base but that is BS. This is why I say it is odd. I know that in College he was at a Mid Major. Look at his ppp points per possession in various scenarios… ie iso, spot up, transition etc found at 1:22. Also at that point in the video the speaker (his Weber St coach Randy Rahe) states he averaged 24-25 points a game on basically 15 shots a game. Efficiency… 46.7%FG, 40.9% 3pt FG, 88.7% FG. Made the 2nd most free throws in Divison I College Basketball last year as well as 2nd in scoring. Just watch the rest of it and I can assure you this is not another Jeff Teague! LOL. This is a better Monta Ellis who can run the point every day. At the end of the video is a very interesting weakness portion that highlights his passing, lack of midrange game (although he knows how to use the floater with or without the glass) lack of great defense although he only allowed .54 ppp on isolations he is not great at coming through screens and weak side help, and the fact he played in the Big Sky Conference can hurt him. In competition against Cal and BYU he shot 29% and scored 14.5% per game. That hurts. He did score 36 against St Mary’s. There is some more growth that is needed. What Lillard says about his team is that two of the more productive players on the team were injured this year, so he did have to take up more of the scoring slack and his assists suffered for it.
Lastly look at this from the combine courtesy of ESPN’s Chad Ford…

“Weber State’s Damian Lillard was the real star of the draft combine. He was the best player to agree to do the drills and it paid off for him. Many of the NBA executives in attendance had never seen him play in person before and the rest had only seen him only a handful of times. Lillard shot the lights out, had a couple of terrific dunks in the drills and 3-on-3 play, played hard and was very good in interviews with teams.

His measurements also turned out to be eerily similar to Derrick Rose. Rose measured 6-1 1/2 in socks and 6-2 1/2 in shoes in Chicago in 2008. Lillard was 6-1 3/4 in socks and 6-2 3/4 in shoes. Rose had a 6-8 wingspan, while Lillard had a 6-7 3/4 wingspan. Rose weighed 196 pounds, while Lillard weighed 188. Both players measured with a 40-inch max vertical. Given Lillard’s rep as a scoring point guard, he’s got to like the similarities.

I believe Lillard’s range starts with the Blazers at No. 6. I doubt he slips past the Phoenix Suns at 13. He’s got workouts in Toronto on Monday, as well as Sacramento and Phoenix this week.” I took that from this page off ESPN… http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/blog/_/name/nba_draft/id/8036913/nba-wrapping-nba-draft-combine Lillard’s is the third bullet.

I love him. I think Steph Curry is not trustworthy going forward. As soon as possible, I want the Dubs to cut ties with Curry… Now don’t get me wrong. The best case scenario may be to see how Curry comes back from injury and to let him build up his trade stock and show the league he is healthy. To me that means as soon as possible is trade deadline this next year. On the other hand, if he is not progressing in his recovery, deal him before the season for a future second rounder. I would not complain if the situation looks bad on the recovery front. I know what Steph is… one of the best shooters in the NBA already. What if what he really is… is Grant Hill? A guy that takes 3 years to recover from this injury before he becomes a reliable guy? That is the last thing the Warriors team or fans want at this point. As fans we have to consider that to be a possibility. The Warriors management have put the chips in the middle with Steph as the face of the Franchise, but they have to realize that Steph may not be reliable as well.
Yes Lillard has weaknesses, but wouldn’t you want an Ellis style player next to Thompson more than Curry anyway? Yes! Why have a backcourt that is great at shooting 3s and not much else. C’mon! Seriously? Are we back to Nellie ball?

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How could the Warriors win 55 games this season?

Are you kidding me?  Do I really think the Golden State Warriors could win 55 games again this year?  YES.

The last time this happened was 1992 just after trading Mitch Richmond for the rights to Billy Owens…  As crazy as that year was, the year before Chris Webber joined the team, this year could be crazier.

If the Warriors could add Rudy Gay to the starting lineup via trade, I would expect a 55 win season, as long as the gimpies… Steph Curry and Andrew  Bogut get well quickly.  PERIOD.

If the Dubs give up Dorell Wright and Andris Biedrins and the #7, #35 and # 52 pick to the Memphis Grizzlies this deal could get done.  This leaves the 30th pick in the first round as the only pick for the Warriors in the Draft.  I believe the Warriors could get great value there with the Center from Vanderbilt, Festus Ezeli.  There could be a cash buyout of Biedrins’ contract or a sign and trade which would get around the amnesty rule and allow both teams to save money on Biedrins.  I have seen others write that Biedrins could be used as an amnesty to another team after a trade, and I know this to be untrue, as the amnesty clause required a player to be on a teams payroll at the time of the last CBA (start of 2011-12012 season ) (my words and speculation)
 
Ok, There it is…  so the Warriors starting lineup would be a tight playoff lineup as of preseason that included, PG Steph Curry, SG Klay Thompson, SF Rudy Gay, PF David Lee, and C Andrew Bogut…  How far could this starting lineup go in the playoffs?  WOW!  Minimum second round in the Western Conference Playoffs.  Period.
 

First five off the bench would be… PG Charles Jenkins (who we have a ton of faith in) SG Brandon Rush (who can defend and shoot the lights out, loved him since he was at Kansas U), SF Dominique Mcguire (who can handle the ball and defend with the best of them,  while putting up numbers like 15 rebounds and 0 points lol), PF Jeremy Tyler(who has shown he is very athletic albeit without great consistency against proven big men) and at Center, the #30 pick of Festus Ezeli (who has shown he could be a bigger Ekpe Udoh).  Interesting.

I have to say this would be the most interesting lineup for the Golden State Warriors in quite some time.  It would take a change of attitude from the Memphis Grizzlies to move Gay, but it would allow the Grizz to reduce payroll and pick up center help while removing a player in Gay who has seemed to be a playoff hindrance in recent years.  The Grizz could go young with Harrison Barnes instead of killing their cap with Gay, while the contracts of Biedrins and Wright expire after the 2012-2013 year.

What would Warriors fans expect with a largely unchanged roster  (talking to those who see the loss of Monta Ellis negating the addition of Andrew Bogut), expect to get after adding Rudy Gay?  Give it a couple of years with good health, (or take my prediction as it is and expect a top 4 seed this next year) and I think that the run n gun, fast break, shoot the lights out team can be back… with a team that will also outrebound the foes and out defend…

Rudy Gay, Andrew Bogut, Brandon Rush and Dominique McGuire are stellar defenders that Coach Mark Jackson and the rest of the team’s management are looking for.

We will see in the coming years if Coach Jackson is the man for the job, but the players are the ones to get the job done… I expect a very competitive squad to be put together this year….   As a lowly blogger, I know that I am not Jerry West.  I do also know that Jerry West has to be thinking the way I am if he wants to win.

LETS GO DUBS!

the Fraz…

If Joe Lacob doesn’t hire me, he’s a fool.  LOL

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
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