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Theres an old basketball adage that says you havent really arrived in the NBA until you put on a wig and perform a classic song in front of 6,000 adoring fans. OK, maybe I made that up, but that was exactly the initiation that the six rookies in Warriors camp endured during Mondays Open Practice at Oracle Arena.
Dubbed The Warriors 6 by Monta Ellis, Klay Thompson, Jeremy Tyler, Charles Jenkins Edwin Ubiles, Gary Flowers and Chris Wright all sported afros while singing (term used lightly) The Jackson 5s I Want You Back. As if the not-so-choreographed performance wasnt embarrassing enough, Dorell Wright piled on the rookie shame by issuing each first-year player a backpack that Lets just say those backpacks would be more common in a second-grade classroom of an all-girls school. Oh, and the rookies must carry those backpacks with them wherever they go throughout the season. So is the life of an NBA rookie.
The silliness that is rookie initiation wrapped up an evening that provided several noteworthy highlights at Mondays Open Practice at Oracle Arena. Despite the comedic manner in which it ended, the event was truly about basketball. Head Coach Mark Jackson was micd up for the event, allowing fans attending the admission-free event to hear firsthand how the coach deals with his players. Always the effective communicator, Jackson had the crowd chanting DE-FENSE just seconds into his initial address to the crowd.
After some brief stretching and some offensive and defensive drills, the team got down to business and took part in an intra-squad scrimmage. It started out with the starters taking on the reserves but players changed teams throughout the three-period scrimmage. Although several new faces are now with the club that had only had three prior days of practice, the lack of familiarity rarely showed itself on the court. Instead, the Warriors looked like a team ready for action, and they will receive their first external test on Saturday when they host the Sacramento Kings in the lone preseason game at Oracle Arena.
The Open Practice came on the heels of Mondays Media Day, also known as Tweedia Day. Warriors.com provided more than two hours worth of live streaming coverage during the event, which included more fan participation than ever before. Fans submitted questions via Twitter, and many were answered during the 10 interviews throughout the afternoon. In case your boss or teacher was hovering over your shoulder and you missed any of the Media Day coverage, you can watch it in its entirety in the video below.
And if you dont have two hours at the moment to watch the video above, check out some of the most entertaining images of the spectacle that is Warriors Media Day in the photo gallery below.
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