Throughout Training Camp, warriors.com will bring you in-depth behind-the-scenes coverage of the Warriors as they prepare for the upcoming season. From Media Day to workouts on the campus of BYU-Hawaii to preseason games, we will be there to give fans an exclusive look at the team.
Monday, October 29 Posted by: warriors.com
Watch Those Rookies Dance
There's been a lot of talk about the special surpise ending at last night's Open Practice. As usual, the team's rookies (as well as second-year players Kelenna Azubuike and Patrick O'Bryant) were brought to center court for a little "initiation." The veterans decided to have the rookies learn the new Soulja Boy Tell'em dance in front of the thousands of Warriors fans who showed up for the free event.
And if you weren't there to witness it firsthand, have no fear. You can watch the entire thing right here:
The rookies obviously have a lot of work to do in order to match the skills of Baron Davis, Al Harrington and Stephen Jackson, who, as you may know, performed an impromptu version of the dance during one of the team's preseason games in Hawaii:
This will mark the final post of this year's Training Camp Blog. We hope you've enjoyed the coverage, and hopefully you were highly entertained and informed. In case you haven't checked it out yet, we just unveiled a new BLOG SQUAD as part of our redesigned site. Visit often for the most complete behind-the-scenes coverage of the Warriors throughout the year.
Sunday, October 28 Posted by: warriors.com
Stephen Jackson was mic'd up on Sunday. For more photos from the Open Practice, click here.
The Warriors had practice on Sunday night, but it wasn't as usual. This time thousands of fans packed the lower level at ORACLE Arena to watch the team run through drills, play an intra-squad scrimmage and participate in a few extra-curricular activities.
For a photo gallery of the Open Practice, click here.
During the hour-and-a-half session, for which admission and parking were free, the Warriors ran through several of their offensive sets. Head Coach Don Nelson was wired with an in-house microphone throughout the practice, so the fans in attendance were able to able to witness first hand the terminology used for different plays.
As many Warriors fans already know, Nellie has quite a sense of humor. It often comes through in his media interviews, and it did so again and again throughout the Open Practice. If a player ever forgot where he was supposed to be on a certain play, Nellie would issue a fine of $20. A good way to keep the team humble for sure, although there is no official word if he ever collected.
Stephen Jackson also wore a microphone during the practice. One of the team captains for the 2007-08 season, Jackson displayed his leadership qualities in front of the entire crowd. Whether the team was running drills or in the middle of a scrimmage, Jackson directed traffic on the floor while also constantly encouraging his teammates. There are widespread reports of how great a teammate Jackson is, and the fans who attended the Open Practice now know why.
After running through drills and their offensive sets, the Warriors broke into two teams for a 40-minute scrimmage (four 10-minute quarters). Assistant Coach Keith Smart directed the Blue team, which included Baron Davis, Monta Ellis, Al Harrington, Andris Biedrins, Mickael Pietrus, Austin Croshere and Stephane Lasme. That squad went up against Stephen Silas' White team of Matt Barnes, Marco Belinelli, Troy Hudson, Jackson, Patrick O'Bryant and Kosta Perovic. Kelenna Azubuike and Brandan Wright watched the practice from the sidelines as they are recovering from some minor injuries.
Although it was just a scrimmage, both teams played with a level of intensity typical of a regular season contest. The scrimmage was closely contested the entire way, but Monta Ellis completed a three-point play with 10.3 seconds left to give the Blue team a 92-91 win. Ellis scored a game-high 34 points in the scrimmage, while Davis added 28 points for the Blue squad. Jackson paced the White team with 26 points.
As it turned out, the scrimmage was just an undercard to the true main event – rookie hazing. After the practice, the veterans requested that some of the team's younger players perform the increasingly popular Soulja Boy dance in front of the entire crowd. Azubuike, O'Bryant and rookies Belinelli, Lasme, Perovic and Wright all attempted the dance, with comical results. It's probably safe to say that none of those players will be appearing on next season's "Dancing With The Stars."
After the young players turned a little red in the face, Harrington, a so-called expert on the dance, showed them how the dance was done with the help of three volunteers from the crowd. The rookies then tried the dance one more time, and showed obvious improvement from their first attempt.
In addition to mentoring the young players on life in the NBA, Harrington also teaches them how to dance. (warriors.com photo)
While the young players may have been a little embarrassed, they could at least take solace in the fact that they weren't alone. Wright wasn't so lucky following the dance routine, as he was given a microphone to sing a song – any song. After taking some requests from the crowd, the rookie forward settled on the Boyz II Men classic “It's so Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday.”
Wright managed only to belt out a few lines before everyone in the entire arena was thankful that he has a promising basketball career ahead of him.
The evening came to a close moments later with Jackson thanking the crowd for coming out and providing a pep talk of sorts, reminding everyone that last year was just the beginning of things to come and that Warriors fans should keep believing.
From basketball instruction to awe-inspiring dunks to flat out comedy, Sunday's Open Practice entertained everyone in attendance. We'll be back on Monday with much more coverage from the event.
Thursday, October 25 Posted by: warriors.com
Welcome To The New Site!
It's finally here. The brand new, ultra sleek, super-savvy, user-friendly, multimedia-rich warriors.com launched today and boy, does it look good (in our very humble opinion). After many, many long days and nights put in by yours truly, as well as the Warriors creative department and the great folks with the NBA, the new site is up and running.
Admittedly, there are probably a few bugs here and there, so bear with us over the next few days. But while you're here, make sure you check out all of the new features on the site, including the brand new Blog Squad, which you obviously have already discovered.
In our opinion (again a very modest one), the best new feature on the site is probably the Multimedia Central area out on the home page. That area should be the first place you visit everytime you log on to warriors.com because we will constantly be providing new videos and photo galleries, all of which can be viewed using our one-of-a-kind, specially designed media player. Once you are finished reading this fine entry, go check it out for yourself. We challenge you to not be highly entertained by the video of Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson and Al Harrington dancing to Soulja Boy. We dare you feign interest on the video showing four of the Warriors' international players playing horseshoes in Hawaii. You will be hard-pressed to find a multimedia player quite like it. Special thanks go out to the folks at Questus for the great work in collaborating with us to make this idea come to life.
For more highlights of the new site, and to learn more about some of our new pages and features, check out our Redesign Overview.
Just so you know, our role as part of the Blog Squad will be to give you, the fans, behind-the-scenes coverage of the team throughout the year. In the past, we have provided you with in-depth coverage of the team through such things as our Playoffs Blog and our Training Camp Blog, but now we'll have updates and coverage throughout the year, both during the season and the offseason. Warrirors PR will also continue their outstanding coverage of the team, providing updates from practice and from the road. We will also bring in our most experienced bloggers, broadcasters Bob Fitzgerald and Tim Roye, to continue to supply more of the great coverage they've provided over the past few years. Also be on the lookout for video updates from broadcaster Jim Barnett, as well as written entries from Warrior Girl captain Alexis. And last but not least, be prepared to get to know Warriors fourth-year center Andris Biedrins much better. The 21-year old from Latvia will provide thoughts, analysis and stories from both on and off the court...and we're pretty sure he's going to keep you entertained.
That's all for now, but be sure to check in often.
Thursday, October 25 Posted by: warriors.com
Thursday Practice Interviews
Wow, what a day. In case you didn't notice, warriors.com has a bit of a new look. We hope you like what you've seen so far and we promise to bring more additions throughout the season. Along with the new look, we will provide more behind-the-scenes coverage of the team. With that mission in mind, we figured it's time to give you another update on the team.
The Warriors practiced today at their Downtown Oakland training facility, after which Head Coach Don Nelson, Monta Ellis and Austin Croshere addressed the media on a variety of topics. Watch video of the interviews by clicking on the image below and catch Nellie's humorous explanation for Tuesday's victory in Seattle.
Golden State will wrap up its preseason tomorrow night against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center. The radio-only broadcast can be heard on KNBR 1050, starting at 7 p.m.
Wednesday, October 24 Posted by: Warriors PR
An Overtime Victory and Catfish
There were many positives to take from last night's overtime victory, including the return of Monta Ellis. (Terrence Vaccaro/NBAE/Getty)
Overtime in the preseason: It isn’t really at the top of anyone’s agenda, but there were plenty of positives for the Warriors down the stretch of regulation and into the extra frame last night. Namely, a trio of rookies (Brandan Wright, Stephane Lasme and Marco Belinelli) teamed with vets Matt Barnes and Monta Ellis to play the final 4:36 of regulation and the ENTIRE overtime against a Sonics crew that included vets Damien Wilkins, Chris Wilcox, Nick Collison (5:00 each of overtime) and Wally Szczerbiak (2:29 of overtime PT), along with rookie Jeff Green (2:29).
Not only that, but the young Warriors crew trailed by five points (109-104) with 3:16 left in regulation and battled back to force the extra period. Wright and Lasme were particularly impressive, using their athleticism and length to get hands and, when needed, finger tips on several balls down that stretch. Wright led all players with five points and four rebounds in the overtime period. The Warriors bench, consisting mostly of veteran rotation players at this point, was up on their feet for most of the overtime period, encouraging and "coaching" the young trio.
All in all, it was great experience for the rooks to be on the court in crunch time of a game, preseason or not. Certainly, to them, it was not a meaningless preseason game. To them, it was a time to show their coaches and teammates that they belong and can handle tough situations. And that is exactly what they did. Good going rooks! Now carry everyone’s bags to the bus!!!!!
Despite the great efforts from the rookies, the MVP of the night, if you ask any Warriors player, was Stephen Jackson. Although Jack was given the night off by Nellie (and looked mighty nice in his grey suit on the bench by the way), he was still the team’s MVP because of what was waiting for the players in the locker room after the game. Jackson had arranged for the post game meal to be catered by Catfish Corner, a restaurant in Seattle owned and operated by his relatives.
As the players returned to the locker room after the final buzzer, they were greeted by the sweet smell of catfish and fried chicken. Not the kind you find at a wanna-be catfish restaurant either … this was the real deal. A special thanks from everyone in the Warriors travel party goes out to Jack’s relatives for the great food …we can’t wait for our return trip to Seattle! And if you are in Seattle for any reason, Catfish Corner is highly recommended.
The next trip for the Warriors into Seattle, however, probably won’t have the same beautiful weather that we experienced over the last two days. The sun was shining, not a cloud in the sky. On the flight into town on Monday afternoon, the buildings downtown were shining brightly and it looked as if you could reach out and touch the Space Needle. On most flights into Seattle, all you can see is dark clouds. The local news was highlighting record-setting temps all around the region as the Warriors boarded the bus to head over to KeyArena for the game.
Warriors radio broadcaster Tim Roye interviewed Brandan Wright on the plane ride home last night for tonight's Warriors Radio Roundtable. (warriors.com photo)
Let’s see … Great weather, an overtime win and fresh catfish after the game … Now that makes for a great trip. AND, no one got hurt. Baron Davis did suffer from a leg cramp at one point and did not return, but that was not due to any sort of injury. Nellie was already planning on giving him the night off after that particular timeout anyway, which explains why BD did not return.
On the plane ride home, Warriors broadcaster Tim Roye sat down with Brandan Wright and taped an interview for tonight’s Warriors Radio Roundtable, which can be heard this evening on KNBR 680 at 9 p.m. Although Roye had wanted to interview Brandan regardless of the outcome of last night’s game, the timing worked out even better after the rookie’s eye-opening performance against the Sonics. Additionally, Tim will be interviewing USA Today basketball writer David Dupree, so be sure to tune in.
Coach Nelson has given the team a day off from practice on Wednesday, with the exception of the rookies who are required to come in and workout both on the court and in the weight room. However, as the team deplaned a little after 1 a.m. this morning, many veterans were making plans to come into the facility as well to get some extra work.
Tuesday, October 23 Posted by: Warriors PR
Just a last-minute update before the game tips off...
Mickael Pietrus arrived at the arena 29 minutes prior to the opening horn and was promptly inserted into Head Coach Don Nelson's starting lineup. Pietrus, who was away from the team over the past day and a half for excused personal reasons, will join Baron Davis, Monta Ellis, Kelenna Azubuike and Andris Biedrins in the starting lineup. The group is comprised of exactly who Nellie proclaimed would be his starters on Opening Night, so it will be interesting to see them play together tonight.
Tuesday, October 23 Posted by: warriors.com
Warriors Face Durant's Sonics Tonight
The Warriors held their typical shootaround this morning at Seattle's KeyArena. (warriors.com photo)
In their second-to-last preseason game of the season, the Warriors will take on the Seattle SuperSonics tonight at KeyArena. Tip-off is slated for 7 p.m., and you can catch all of the action on KNBR 1050.
Tonight's game will give the Warriors another look at Seattle rookie Kevin Durant. The two teams faced each other during the 2007 Summer League in Las Vegas, with the Warriors emerging with a 85-74 victory. The rookie-of-the-year candidate went off for 32 points in that contest, albeit against a summer league Warriors entry that hardly resembled the current club. Of the five Warriors who participated in the team's summer session, only Patrick O'Bryant and Marco Belinelli played in the contest against Seattle.
Kelenna Azubuike, Brandan Wright and Stephane Lasme all sat out the summer league game against Seattle with injuries, but all three are expected to play tonight. In addition, Monta Ellis (sprained neck), Andris Biedrins (sprained big toe on left foot) and Troy Hudson (sore left groin) are all game-time decisions. Should Ellis play, it would be his first game action of the preseason.
After tonight's contest, the Warriors have one final tune-up against the Clippers on Friday before returning home to open the season against the Utah Jazz a week from tonight.
Stay tuned for more updates to the Warriors Training Camp Blog, and in case you missed it, check out yesterday's posting to see what Don Nelson, Al Harrington and Matt Barnes had to say following Monday's practice.
Monday, October 22 Posted by: warriors.com
Gearing Up For The Season
We're just more than a week away from Opening Night at ORACLE Arena and there are still a few Club 200 tickets remaining for the game against Utah . While excitement has been dawning all over the Bay Area in anticipation of the new season, perhaps nobody is as amped for the 2007-08 campaign as the players themselves.
The team appears to be ready for the Oct. 30 re-match of last year's Western Conference Semifinals. In fact, the team chemistry is already in midseason form. On Sunday, team captains Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes organized a trip to the Raiders and Chiefs game. Despite the result, Oakland fell to Kansas City, 12-10, the trip was a hit among the several Warriors who attended the game.
Also on Sunday, the Warriors waived Pat Burke and Tierre Brown, bringing the number of players on the roster to 15. NBA rules mandate that a team can have no more than 15 players for a regular season game, with any 12 of those players being eligible to play in that night's contest. In that respect, the Warriors most likely will not need to tinker with their roster at all before Oct. 30's opener.
Speaking of Nellie, he sat down with reporters after practice today, as did Al Harrington and Matt Barnes. To watch video of the interviews, click on the image below.
Following practice, the Warriors departed for Seattle. They will take on the SuperSonics tomorrow night in a radio-only contest that can be heard on KNBR 1050 at 7 p.m. Andris Biedrins (sprained big toe, left foot), Troy Hudson (sore left groin) and Monta Ellis (neck sprain) are all listed as game-time
Saturday, October 20 Posted by: warriors.com
Nellie Announces Starting Lineup
Kelenna Azubuike's hard work has earned him a spot in the Warriors' starting lineup. (Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty)
The Warriors were back out on the practice floor on Saturday, and Head Coach Don Nelson supplied the biggest news of the day by announcing what he says will be his starting lineup on Opening Night. With Stephen Jackson serving a seven-game suspension to begin the season, Nellie announced that the Warriors would go with the following lineup when they face the Jazz on October 30 at ORACLE Arena.
PG: Baron Davis | SG: Monta Ellis | SF: Kelenna Azubuike PF: Mickael Pietrus | C: Andris Biedrins
This lineup might seem a bit odd if it were any coach besides Nellie, but Warriors fans are well aware that the coach with the second-most wins in NBA history is fond of playing 'small ball.' Ellis, who started 53 games last season on his way to earning NBA Most Improved Player honors, will make up a high-scoring backcourt with Baron Davis. Azubuike, who has averaged a team-leading 17.2 points per game in the preseason, will step in for Jackson and look to show exactly why the Warriors think so highly of him. Pietrus, typically a swingman, will step into the role of power forward, with Al Harrington being utilized as the team's sixth man. Fourth-year center Biedrins will man the middle as the Warriors look to run and gun all season long.
Following practice, Warriors Executive VP of Basketball Operations Chris Mullin addressed the local media. LISTEN
Remember to check back often for more updates. And if you haven't watched the video of Baron Davis mic'd up at the Warriors preseason game in Hawaii, do yourself a favor and watch it now.
Friday, October 19 Posted by: warriors.com
A Day Off, Sort Of
It's not unusual for players like Kosta Perovic to work on their game during an off-day. (warriors.com photo)
Following last night’s 116-111 loss in San Antonio, the Warriors were given the day off from practice today. Despite getting back to the Bay Area in the wee hours of this morning, many players still made their way to the team’s practice facility in Downtown Oakland earlier today to use the gym, work on their individual game and get treatment.
Three players – Andris Biedrins, Troy Hudson and Monta Ellis – sat out Thursday’s contest with injuries, but all three are expected to make full recoveries. Biedrins and Hudson were game-time decisions in San Antonio, and Ellis is starting to participate in more practice activities after he suffered a sprained neck earlier in training camp. As Tim Roye wrote in his latest Journal entry, hopefully the Warriors can avoid the injury bug for the rest of the preseason.
For all other NBA news, be sure to check out NBA.com’s new blog The Court Reporters. Editor Rob Peterson and company provide an excellent resource to get caught up on all that’s going around the league.
Thursday, October 18 Posted by: warriors.com
Baron Can Motivate...And He Can Dance Too
During the Warriors' final preseason game in Hawaii, Baron Davis agreed to wear a microphone while sitting on the bench. Because he was gracious enough to do this, we were able to catch a glimpse of the kind of teammate he is. And since Head Coach Don Nelson rested most of his starters for the entire game, Baron, Al Harrington and Stephen Jackson kept themselves busy at one point by...actually we don't want to ruin it, you really should just watch the video.
Baron and the Warriors will look to improve their preseason record to 4-1 when they take on the Spurs in San Antonio tonight. If you missed the Warriors Preseason TV Special, it will air six more times over the next two weeks. To catch a special clip involving some of the Warriors international players, click here.
Stay tuned for more videos, updates and features as the Warriors continue on during the preseason.
Wednesday, October 17 Posted by: warriors.com
Talking About Injuries
Four games into the preseason and the Warriors are a banged up bunch. Fortunately, none of the injuries appear to be too serious and all of the hurt players have started to take part in at least some form of basketball activity over the last few days. Following today's practice, Head Coach Don Nelson talked about his team's injury plight and Andris Biedrins provided an update on his sprained big toe on his left foot. To watch the video of the interviews, click on the image below.
And in case you missed the earlier posting regarding the Warriors Preseason TV Special, you can watch it tonight at 7 p.m. on FSN Bay Area. And to catch a special sneak preview of the show, click here.
Also earlier today, Warriors radio broadcaster Tim Roye provided his thoughts on the team's preseason so far and answered fans' questions in another edition of the Journal. To read his latest entry, click here.
Wednesday, October 17 Posted by: warriors.com
Warriors Preseason TV Special
In case you missed it last night, the Warriors Preseason TV Special will air again tonight at 7:00 p.m. on FSN Bay Area, as well as six more times over the next two weeks. For a full schedule of air times, click here.
And for a special sneak preview of the show, check out the segment on four of the Warriors' international players by clicking the video below.
Stay tuned for more videos, updates and features as the Warriors continue on during the preseason.
Tuesday, October 16 Posted by: warriors.com
Pietrus Practice Interview
Mickael Pietrus, who slightly injured his back during the Warriors' final game in Hawaii, also spoke following Tuesday's practice. For an update on his condition and his thoughts on the upcoming season, watch the video below.
Tuesday, October 16 Posted by: warriors.com
Nelson Practice Interview
The Warriors emerged victorious in last night's 107-88 victory over Zalgiris Kaunas of Lithuania. Golden State got out to a large advantage early, allowing the younger plays to see ample playing time. Kosta Perovic saw his first NBA action, Marco Belinelli played all 48 minutes and Brandan Wright continued to provide glimpses of his sky-high potential.
At practice earlier today, Head Coach Don Nelson commented on the play of his rookies with members of the local media. Watch his interview by clicking on the image below.
Monday, October 15 Posted by: warriors.com
Nelson Pre-Game Interview
The Warriors' final preseason home game is less than two hours away, and the team is anxious to avenge last night's loss to the Clippers. Not completely satisfied with the team's play last night, Head Coach Don Nelson put the Warriors through a standard practice earlier today. Typically, the second day of a back-to-back consists of a light shootaround, but Nellie obviously wanted to make a point and let his team know that he expects more out of his team.
Following practice, Nelson spoke with members of the local media. Watch his interview below.
Monday, October 15 Posted by: warriors.com
Open Practice Announced
Open Practice usually provides a few laughs for fans and players alike. (warriors.com photo)
The Warriors announced today that the team will be holding their annual Open Practice on Sunday, October 28 from 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. As usual, the event is FREE and open to the public.
The practice gives fans the chance to see Head Coach Don Nelson put his team through drills and scrimmages, all while he is wearing a microphone so that they can hear his every word. And as many fans might guess, Nellie can be quite entertaining during practices...whether he means to or not.
The practice usually involves a few antics as well, most notably rookie inititations. Last year, a handful of children were chosen from the crowd to play a game of duck-duck-goose with 7-foot rookie Patrick O'Bryant. Obviously, this was quite entertaining to watch. The year before, rookies were given lyrics to their school song as well as a microphone. They then had to sing the song while standing at center court. Once again, this had players, coaches and fans laughing out loud, albeit while muffling their ears.
Lastly, the open practice will also serve as the official Grand Opening of the brand new Club 200, with two new lounge areas, upgraded concessions and more. For more information on how to attend the grand opening, click here.
Monday, October 15 Posted by: warriors.com
An International Affair
Like many teams in the NBA, the Warriors have a variety of countries represented on their roster. (Don Smith/NBAE/Getty)
The Warriors won't get much rest after Sunday's 99-89 preseason loss to the Clippers, as the team will return to the floor to host Zalgiris Kaunas of Lithuania on Monday at ORACLE Arena. Winners of 14 Lithuanian League titles, Zalgiris is run under the healm of former NBA player Arvydas Sabonis, who acts as the club's president. The only way to catch the action will be to come to ORACLE Arena, as the action will not be broadcasted on local television or radio. Act now, as a limited number of lower level tickets are still available for this contest.
Zalgiris will be the only international team the Warriors play this season, but dozens of foreign-born players will take the floor at ORACLE Arena throughout the season. On the Warrors current roster alone, Andris Biedrins (Latvia), Kelenna Azubuike (England), Marco Belinelli (Italy), Kosta Perovic (Serbia), Mickael Pietrus (Guadeloupe), Stephane Lasme (Gabon) and Pat Burke (Ireland) are from overseas. Throughout the league, there are even more players from outside the United States.
For a complete listing of foreign players in the NBA and when they will play the Warriors at ORACLE Arena, click here. Act now and at each of the games listed, fans can purchase $48 tickets for just $40!
Saturday, October 13 Posted by: Warriors PR
Back In The Bay
Don Nelson has always been very vocal with his young players. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Following two impressive wins over the Lakers in Honolulu, the Warriors concluded their 12-day stint in paradise on Friday. Coach Nelson elected to give the players the day off from practice and the team had a 12:00 p.m. departure time from the Halakalani Hotel and a 1:30 p.m. charter flight back to Oakland. Unlike flights during the regular season, the team chartered a commercial airline for this particular excursion and had a chance to experience what a typical traveler would upon their arrival at the Honolulu airport. The players and staff had a chance to mingle with people at the airport, including many autograph seekers, and went through a long security line.
Additionally, it is customary for Hawaiian airport authority to have dogs smell for various substances that are banned from flights, including fruits. The dog on hand on this particular day was about the size of Lucky, Coach Nelson’s little pet, and of course the team had some fun with its presence. The security dog did not find anything abnormal in the Warriors’ party, with the exception of a couple of apples in the bag of one member of the traveling party.
As a side note, we asked a security representative at the airport how long it takes to train a dog for this particular job. He indicated that it takes a year to train a dog and about two years it to become extremely good and very reliable. Apparently, it is the kid of job where you can’t dog it.
Thursday’s 119-106 win over the Lakers at the Stan Sheriff Center featured another solid performance by the Warriors. It was good to see some of the young players – Patrick O’Bryant, Brandan Wright, Marco Belinelli and Stephane Lasme – play well for Golden State. The youngsters did a nice job and certainly will benefit from the experience. Coach Nelson complimented the players after the game, although he is extremely vocal when it comes to his young players and their mistakes during the course of the action.
Nellie has always been vocal with his young players and does a great job of making an animated point during the game and following that up with a pat on the back in the locker room. The NBA is not a place for timid young men and that becomes apparent immediately when a player steps on the court. If a player does not have the strength to endure a little criticism, he will not last long in this league.
Baron Davis, who did not play in Thursday’s game, wore a wireless microphone on the bench for the Warriors in-house broadcasting department. Reportedly, BD was very engaging with his teammates on the bench, the referees and even a few fans. Baron is very receptive to doing many of the media-related requests that come his way during the season and, as one would imagine, he receives more requests than any player on the squad. Fans can look for highlights of this behind-the-scenes look at Baron on warriors.com in the near future.
Stephane Lasme was one of several Warriors players to attend the NBA's Rookie Transition Program. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Rookie Brandan Wright showed the maturity of a 10-year veteran in the locker room post-game on Thursday. When the beat writers asked him exactly what Nellie was saying to him in a rather loud tone during the game, his response was ideal – “We’ll keep that in-house. He was just trying to help me.” Such a response was a perfect way to handle the question from the media and proved that the youngster has learned how do deal quite well with the media at a young age.
Brandan was among the group of NBA rookies who attended the Rookie Transition Program in New York in late September. Part of that program deals with media relations and how to answer questions. Many of the players who enter the league today have had very little media exposure in terms of interviews, especially those who attended college for only one year or those who jumped straight from high school to the NBA. The league and its teams, however, have implemented several methods to assist the players in their dealings with the media. In addition to the Rookie Transition Program, every team in the league must conduct a media relations seminar with its players each season. In fact, it is part of the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) with the players.
The Warriors, for example, will conduct several group sessions with their players in November and December this season. These group sessions will consist of four (4) players per group and will feature Bob Fitzgerald and Raymond Ridder (Warriors PR), who will cover many different topics in regards to media relations. The topics will range from how to answer questions to how to approach different types of interviews (TV, radio, newspaper, etc.). The most entertaining part of the seminar takes place when the players have the opportunity to view a DVD that contains some of the worst media-relation nightmares in the history of professional sports (players ripping coaches, coaches ripping the media, players criticizing teammates, etc.). Nothing hits home more than actual footage of “how not to do it.”
The Warriors fan base has grown tremendously since last year’s playoff success.. (photo: Monique Saenz)
Last year’s playoff success has certainly paid dividends for the Warriors and has increased its fan base on a national level. The two games in Honolulu, which in previous years had 99 percent of the crowd rooting for the Lakers, featured a large number of Warriors fans. It would not be inaccurate to say that possibly 25 percent of the crowds were cheering for the Warriors. And, if they were not directly cheering for the Warriors, they were certainly impressed with the team’s style of play.
For those of you who are curious, the Lakers were the home team for the games in Hawaii. The home team in the preseason is determined by the teams and deals they work out with promoters. The Lakers, for example, play several out-of-market preseason games each season and hire a promoter to market the games. The promoter will pay the Lakers a fee to play the games in a particular city and the Lakers will control the ticket inventory and are responsible for all of the game operations (statistics, PR, towels, cheerleaders, PA announcers, etc.).
In this situation, the Lakers will also pay the Warriors a certain fee for playing the games. Other than the two games in Hawaii, the Warriors do not have a preseason game in a non-NBA market this year. The Stan Sheriff Center at the University of Hawaii is a very good venue for a preseason game. The arena holds a little more than 10,000 fans, the locker rooms are adequate and the press accommodations are pretty good. There are some arenas around the country (which will remain nameless) that are not exactly ideal to host preseason NBA games. However, it is always good for the NBA to showcase its product in non-NBA cities.
The Warriors practiced at home on Saturday morning in preparation for their two preseason dates at ORACLE Arena (Sunday against the L.A. Clippers and Monday against Zalgiris of Lithuania).
Friday, October 12 Posted by: warriors.com
Looking Back On Hawaii
In addition to their stellar play on the court, the Warriors exemplified a high level of team chemistry during their 2007 Training Camp. (Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty)
As the Warriors are making their way back to the Bay Area, we figure there would be no better time than the present to recap the Warriors 2007 Training Camp in Hawaii. Over the last week and a half, warriors.com has brought you a ton of beind-the-scenes coverage. From media day photo galleries to analysis from Warriors broadcasters to raw video footage of the team's practices, we have done our best to provide you with the most complete coverage of the Warriors as they prepare for the 2007-08 season.
In case you missed any of it, here's your chance to get caught up:
For all of our multimedia features, including videos, photo galleries, radio interviews and more, click here.
The Warriors will arrive in Oakland tonight and hold practice tomorrow at 10 a.m. in preparation for Sunday's preseason home opener against the Los Angeles Clippers . The Warriors will remain at home for Monday's contest against Zalgiris Kaunas (Lithuania).
Tickets are still available for each of those contests. In addition, a limited number of Club 200 Season Tickets are still available for the 2007-08 season. Act now, as packages start at just $18 per game.
We'll be back with much more coverage when the team arrives back in the Bay Area.
Thursday, October 11 Posted by: warriors.com
Stephen Jackson Mic'd Up
At this morning's shootaround, the always-talkative Stephen Jackson wore a microphone. Find out exactly what he's like at Warriors' practices by watching the video below.
Tip off is in less than one hour, so stay tuned for much more coverage of the team. In the meantime, check out KNBR’s interview with Kelenna Azubuike from earlier today. Remember that the game is live on KNBR 1050 starting at 10:00 p.m. And in case you were wondering what a typical day is like for the Warriors in Hawaii, check out the our behind-the-scenes photo gallery.
Thursday, October 11 Posted by: warriors.com
Brandan Wright's first NBA preseason action will come with tonight's start. (photo: Monique Saenz)
The Warriors trip to Hawaii is coming to an end, but not before they take on the Lakers tonight for the second time in three days. Tonight’s radio-only broadcast can be heard on KNBR 1050 at 10 p.m.
During Tuesday night’s action, the Warriors got off to a blistering start. They scored 41 points in the first quarter before eventually beating Los Angeles 111-110 on Troy Hudson’s last-second shot.
If Golden State opens tonight’s contest in similar fashion, it will be with a different starting lineup. Rookie forward Brandan Wright, who didn’t see any action on Tuesday, will get the starting nod tonight. Joining Wright in the opening rotation will be Patrick O’Bryant, who impressed nearly everyone on Tuesday with 12 rebounds and three blocks in just 19 minutes.
O’Bryant will start in place of Andris Biedrins, who will sit out tonight’s action with a sprained toe. Monta Ellis will also watch tonight’s game in street clothes as he continues to rest his sprained neck. Both of those injuries are minor, so the two players could possibly see some playing time when the Warriors host the Clippers on Sunday evening in their preseason home opener at ORACLE Arena .
Following tonight’s action, the Warriors will stay in Honolulu and practice tomorrow morning before departing for the Bay Area at 1:30 p.m. (Hawaii time).
We'll be back with more coverage soon. Remember that tonight's game can be heard live on KNBR 1050.
Wednesday, October 10 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
In his latest video blog entry, Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett discusses the Warriors' victory over the Lakers and touches on the team's Wednesday practice. To watch Jim's latest update, check out the video below.
For more reaction to last night's victory, including an interview with Troy Hudson and a journal entry by Tim Roye, view the previous post. And remember that Thursday night's game will tip off at 10:00 p.m. (Pacific time) and can be heard live on KNBR 1050.
Wednesday, October 10 Posted by: warriors.com
Warriors Start The Preseason 1-0
The Warriors looked sharp in their preseason opener last night, taking down the Lakers 111-110 thanks to a last-second jumper by recent signee Troy Hudson. The starting five -- Baron Davis, Kelenna Azubuike, Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington and Andris Biedrins -- seemed to pick up right where the team left off during the 2007 Playoffs, racing out to a 41-20 lead by the end of the first quarter. Azubuike went on to finish with a team-high 27 points, while also grabbing nine rebounds. For a complete recap of the contest, including a photo gallery and box score, click here.
Tim Roye, who called last night's contest on KNBR 1050, also wrote a recap of the game, in which he shared his thoughts on each of the players and once again answered fan e-mails. Read his latest journal entry here.
Additionally, after nailing the game-winning jumper and finishing with 15 points in his preseason Warriors debut, Troy Hudson spoke with Warriors broadcaster Bob Fitzgerald in the locker room. Watch the video by clicking on the image below.
Tuesday, October 9 Posted by: warriors.com
Al Harrington Interview & Tim Roye's Journal
We're less than six hours away from the Warriors preseason opener versus the Los Angeles Lakers. As noted earlier, the game can be heard on KNBR 1050 and seen on FSN Bay Area at 10:00 p.m. The television broadcast will be preceded by a live 30-minute pregame show that will include interviews with President Robert Rowell and Special Assistant Mitch Richmond.
While you're waiting for the game to tip-off, have a look at what Al Harrington had to say when interviewed by Tim Roye at this morning's team shootaround.
Roye has been hard at work during his time in Hawaii, and today he submitted yet another journal full of fan questions, player interviews and thoughts on the upcoming preseason schedule. Read his most recent journal entry here.
Tuesday, October 9 Posted by: warriors.com
Day 6 Practice Video
During Monday's practice, Baron Davis weighed in on how the first-year Warriors have progressed through training camp. Hear what Baron had to say and also check out some raw footage of Monday's practice by clicking on the image below.
Remember, tonight's preseason opener against the Lakers in Honolulu can be heard on KNBR 1050 and seen on FSN Bay Area at 10 p.m. The television broadcast will be preceded by a live 30-minute pregame show that will include interviews with President Robert Rowell and Special Assistant Mitch Richmond.
Tuesday, October 9 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
In his most latest video blog entry, Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett discusses how players and coaches spent their off-day on Sunday, and he also previewed tonight's season opener against the Lakers in Honolulu. For all that and more, check out the video below.
Stay tuned for much more coverage of the team as they head into tonight's game, which will be broadcast live on KNBR 1050 and FSN Bay Area at 10 p.m.
Monday, October 8 Posted by: warriors.com
Heading To Honolulu
Mitch Richmond and Chris Mullin enjoyed what they saw over the Warriors first week of practice. (photos: Monique Saenz)
Don Nelson put his team through one last practice today before the team prepared to board a bus headed for Honolulu. The session was the longest of training camp thus far, and it brought more of the same enthusiasm and competitiveness that has been present throughout the week. The players will now look to carry that intensity and ever-increasing team unity into the beginning of preseason play.
The Warriors will take on the Lakers in their preseason opener on Tuesday night at the Stan Sheriff Center on the campus of the University of Hawaii. Tipping off at 7 p.m. Hawaii time (10:00 p.m. in the Bay Area) the contest will be televised by FSN Bay Area and will be preceded by a live 30-minute pregame show that will include interviews with President Robert Rowell and Special Assistant Mitch Richmond. The game is the first of two that the Warriors and Lakers will play this week in Hawaii, with the second game coming on Thursday evening at the same time. Live radio broadcasts of both games can be heard on KNBR 1050 AM, with Tim Roye calling the action.
Roye submitted another journal entry prior to practice this morning in which he touched on how the Warriors' players and coaches spent their day off on Sunday. He also took the time to answer a few more questions from fans. Read the journal here.
Monta Ellis was held out of practice again on Monday as he continues to recover from a neck strain suffered at Friday's practice. Monta will be officially listed as doubtful for tomorrow's game against the Lakers. Newcomer Austin Croshere also missed practice on Monday with back spasms, but has stated that he fully intends to play on Tuesday.
With two-a-days now behind them, the team will have the chance to enjoy a night off in Honolulu. Tomorrow at 10:00 a.m., they will meet at the Stan Sheriff Center for morning shootaround. Later that night, they will take the floor for the first time...and we're not sure anyone is as excited as the players themselves.
We will have plenty more coverage coming soon, including more video blogs and behind-the-scenes updates. To listen to Coach Nelson's recent interview on the Jim Rome Show, click here.
Sunday, October 7 Posted by: Warriors PR
Day 5 Practice Recap
Baron Davis and Stephen Jackson have been two of the fiercest competitors at training camp. (photos: Monique Saenz)
The Warriors were in good spirits on Saturday after learning that guard Monta Ellis had been released from the hospital late Friday night after suffering a sprained neck during practice. Ellis fell to the floor after attempting to split a double-team and hit his head on the hip of rookie Brandan Wright. It is always a tense time when a player leaves the practice court on a stretcher, but we were able to filter a report out to the media on Monta's status shortly before midnight on Friday (Hawaii time). The report was obviously a positive one, indicating that he walked out of the hospital on his own accord and that all tests conducted proved normal. Hopefully, we will see Monta back on the court at some point in the near future.
Monta, who was seen walking around the team hotel on Saturday afternoon, issued a statement to the media regarding his fall the previous night. He said, in essence, that he was coherent after the fall and that he had feeling in all parts of his body, but had a sore neck and a little tingling in his arms.
Prior to Saturday's lone practice, the Warriors attended a mandatory team meeting with members of the NBA's security department. Each team in the NBA must attend a similar meeting at some point during training camp. The meeting is designed to inform the players about many of the security issues that they might face during the course of the season. All 18 players attended the meeting, which was a good thing, because their wallet would have been a little lighter had they been unable to attend.
Coach Don Nelson turned Saturday night's practice over to his assistant coaches as he watched from the stands. Nellie enjoys observing on occasion throughout the season, providing him a different perspective. He was probably impressed with a practice that was high-level and intense as it was on Saturday. Assistant Coach Keith Smart said that it is hard to fathom the intensity the team has practiced with during their stay at BYU-Hawaii. "It is really hard to believe," said Smart. "These guys have gone really hard every day and we've had some great practices."
Matt Barnes looked sharp in his return to practice on Saturday. (photo: Monique Saenz)
One interesting development at practice on Saturday occurred when Baron Davis and Stephen Jackson – on opposite teams – became involved in a friendly and verbal battle as they guarded one another during a scrimmage. Davis' team was scoring with regularity and he was jawing at Jax about his team's inability to stop his squad. At that point, Jackson became extra intense and eventually screamed, "You are making me better BD" as he guarded him with a little extra vigor. Eventually, the two embraced. This is the kind of animated moments that have made this training camp extra special and productive. The players' focus and serious attitude has been incredible.
Saturday's practice was again filled with some impressive shooting performances from the likes of Austin Croshere, Troy Hudson, Kelenna Azubuike, Marco Belinelli and Baron Davis. Croshere, in particular, stood out during the scrimmage, when he nailed several three-pointers and other mid-range jumpers. The 10-year NBA veteran provides another dimension for the Warriors with his perimeter shooting ability from the center position (he will also see time at power forward). Based on this training camp, Croshere has turned many heads with his ability to put the ball in the basket and rebound. He's had a great camp.
During one 5-on-5 stretch on Saturday, a team consisting of Croshere, Baron Davis, Troy Hudson, Andris Biedrins and Carlos Powell were in an incredible shooting zone, scoring on about eight straight possessions, including three-pointers from Croshere (two), Hudson (two) and Powell. Hudson looks as though he is completely free of the ankle problems that have hindered him the last couple of seasons. He is running free and easy and putting the ball in the basket. It is hard to think of many teams that might have signed two players to veteran minimum contracts this summer that could have more of an impact then Croshere and Hudson. They are clearly not one of the top four or five players on this team, but for second-unit players, they will give this squad a ton of options during the course of the campaign. They might play a lot for certain stretches of the season and might not play a ton at other times; but they will be ready and most importantly, able, when called upon.
The shooting touches of Croshere and Hudson appear to be contagious. It makes you wonder how many teams in the league have more three-point weapons than Golden State. You could claim that the Warriors have nine players – Azubuike, Barnes, Belinelli, Croshere, Davis, Harrington, Hudson, Jackson and Pietrus – who are pretty decent three-point shooters. And, that list does not include Monta Ellis, who is an improving 3-point shooter. Also impressive is the fact that these shooters cover every position on the floor from point guard to center.
Some Warriors also stood out within the three-point line. Hudson closed Saturday's practice with a nice little shooting exhibition from the charity stripe – sinking 124 consecutive free throws. Sidney Moncrief was seen shortly thereafter speaking to Chris Mullin about a raise. Hudson said the 124 were a personal all-time best, topping 104 that he nailed earlier in his career.
Forward Matt Barnes, who did not practice on Thursday and Friday due to a sore left foot, returned to practice on Saturday. He looked sharp and moved freely.
Troy Hudson closed out Saturday's practice with an impressive free throw display. (photo: Monique Saenz)
Coach Nelson made a confession on Saturday without visiting a Church. He told the Warriors' two beat writers that he aided Stephen Jackson in his bid to win a bet with Baron Davis during the team's written exam on Friday. As noted earlier, Jackson bet Davis that he would earn a higher score on the test. Upon hearing this, Nellie also bet BD that Jax would have a higher score. What BD did not know was that the second-winningest coach in NBA history had slipped Mr. Jackson a copy of the test the night before. Only Nellie. I guess that explains Jackson's perfect score on the exam.
Prior to Saturday's practice, Baron Davis taped a special segment for the Warriors preseason TV special near the outdoor tennis courts at the team hotel. The interview was conducted by Jim Barnett and was wide-ranging, hitting on topics from last season's incredible finish to Baron's ability to take over a game and what it feels like to be in that situation.
The Warriors will enjoy their first off-day since the beginning of training camp on Sunday. However, in lieu of practice, Coach Nelson has scheduled a "team-bonding" session for the afternoon. The activity? Paintball.
Following their fun non-basketball activity, the players will attend a "Business of Basketball" meeting at the team hotel. This meeting, which will be conducted by Warriors President Robert Rowell, will educate the players on some of the business aspects of the NBA and, in particular, the Warriors. The team and the league believe it is important to let the players know what makes our business run and what is expected of them to help achieve certain goals of the organization – other than winning games. Each team in the league will have a meeting on this subject at some point during the early portion of the season.
The Warriors will practice one final time on the North Shore of Oahu on Monday afternoon before venturing over to Honolulu late that afternoon. They will battle the Lakers in their preseason opener on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. Hawaii time (10:00 p.m. in the Bay Area). The game will be televised by FSN Bay Area and will be preceded by a live 30-minute pregame show that will include interviews with President Robert Rowell and Special Assistant Mitch Richmond.
We’ll be back with another update following practice on Monday. In the meantime, for another prospective on the Warriors, check out the latest Tim Roye Journal. His most recent entry features an interview with Troy Hudson.
Sunday, October 7 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
In his most recent video blog entry, Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett talks about the Monta Ellis injury, as well as his take on the Warriors' one-on-one games in training camp.
Also, Tim Roye recently wrote another journal entry in which he discussed Monta Ellis' injury, interviewed Troy Hudson and answered a few more questions from fans. Read the latest journal by clicking here.
Saturday, October 6 Posted by: warriors.com
Day 4 & 5 Practice Video
Check out some raw footage from Thursday and Friday's practices by clicking on the image below. Also, hear Head Coach Don Nelson and Marco Belinelli speak about Belinelli's role on the team this season.
If you're looking for an update on the status of Monta Ellis, who suffered a strained neck during Friday's practice, please read the previous post.
Saturday, October 6 Posted by: Warriors PR
Monta Ellis Injury Update
(photo: Jordan Murph)
Golden State Warriors guard Monta Ellis, who was injured during the team's evening practice session at BYU-Hawaii on Friday when he hit his head on the hip of rookie forward Brandan Wright during a full court scrimmage, was released from the hospital late Friday night (Hawaii time, just before midnight). Ellis left Castle Hospital in Kailua, Hawaii on his own accord with what was diagnosed as simply a neck sprain. The 6'3" guard underwent a battery of tests - including an MRI and CT Scan - which all proved normal. His status is listed as day-to-day and his availability for the team's preseason games against the Los Angeles Lakers in Honolulu on Tuesday and Thursday will be determined early next week.
Friday, October 5 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett discusses the surprising level of intensity at Warriors Training Camp with radio broadcaster Tim Roye in his most recent video blog. Find out what the duo had to say by watching the video below.
Friday, October 5 Posted by: Warriors PR
Day 4 Practice Recap
Baron Davis had to laugh despite losing a friendly bet to Stephen Jackson. (photo: Monique Saenz)
Although the Warriors have now been on the campus of BYU-Hawaii for about four days during Training Camp, they really just returned to school today. Prior to Friday's morning session, Coach Don Nelson and his 18 players entered a private ballroom at the team hotel on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii. The room looked just like the classrooms that you and I entered on many days in high school or college. There was a lectern at the front of the room and 8 or 10 six-foot table with notepads and pens. Now, I'm not sure if we ever had a teacher with a round belly, silver hair and 1,232 NBA wins under his belt, but Nellie played the part to a T. After all of his pupils were seated, Nellie stood behind the lectern as his assistant coaches handed out a test that covered much of the material that the team had been taught during the first part of training camp. The test covered a little bit of everything --- offense, defense, play numbers, etc. The test consisted of 10 questions and the players were provided 15 minutes to complete the exam, which demanded not only written answers, but also a few offensive and defensive diagrams. A little art, if you will.
As the team bus made the drive from the hotel to BYU-Hawaii after the test, assistants Travis Schlenk, Russ Turner and Stephen Silas graded the papers. Prior to the start of practice, the results were in and Nellie addressed the team with the good....and bad news. Kelenna Azubuike and Stephen Jackson, who have both had outstanding training camps on the court, were also the standouts in the classroom. They were the only two players to score 100% on the test. Baron Davis and Austin Croshere each missed 1/2 of a question. Of course, a few players missed more then one question, but we'll protect the guilty parties.
Stephen Jackson and Baron Davis had a friendly wager as to who would earn the highest score between the two. Of course, BD was not too happy to learn that he had missed 1/2 a question and questioned the integrity of the graders. However, he later handed Jax his payment and all was forgotten. Jax simply commented "I'm just smarter" as he walked away from BD.
Speaking of Baron Davis, he has certainly enjoyed his veteran standing during training camp. As the team concluded Thursday night's practice, BD informed rookie Stephane Lasme that he expected two grapefruits and two coconuts before practice on Friday morning. 12 hours later, there was the Mr. Lasme, walking into the team breakfast with his hands full. The rookies are learning fast.
The night practice on Thursday continued to elicit rave reviews from staff members. The team seems to have a hunger and really enjoys practicing, as strange as that sounds. Several players continued to stand out, including Marco Belinelli and his shooting stroke. As we noted earlier this week, Davis and Belinelli spend the end of each practice shooting 35-40 foot jump shots. Belinelli walked away with Thursday night's contest when he nailed five consecutive shots from about 37 feet to end the session. Davis, who led the NBA in steals last season, has his sights set on leading the league in assists this year. Belinelli will certainly add to his total based on what we've seen in camp.
The players shared a laugh when shown this 1978 Sports Illustrated with new shooting coach Sidney Moncrief on the cover. (photo: Sports Illustrated)
The entire team and staff got a kick this morning when they were shown a photo of Sidney Moncrief, the team's new shooting coach, on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1978. In the photo, Moncrief is seen leaping for a dunk and has the ball cocked behind his head as the basket looms in front of him. The caption says "High on the Hogs; Sidney Moncrief leads No. 2 Arkansas." Monta Ellis, who was several years away from being born in 1978, was quite impressed with Moncrief and had no idea that he was such a good player when informed of his career accomplishments.
Mickael Pietrus, who practiced for the first time on Thursday, has looked good. His jump shots have been falling regularly and he still has his same, outgoing, fun-loving personality. He spent part of Thursday night at the home of ESPN.com reporter Chad Ford. Ford, who has worked for ESPN.com for several years, is a professor at BYU-Hawaii and has attended a couple of practices this week. Ford met Pietrus several years ago when he traveled to France as part of his annual International scouting trip. ESPN's other reporter in Hawaii, Ric Bucher, attended practice again on Friday and is expected to write a piece on the Warriors in the near future.
Baron Davis taped an NBA training camp correspondent piece for Jim Rome's TV show today after the morning practice. Davis introduced several of his teammates and front office staff and gave the viewers a report on the team's camp. The piece is scheduled to air on "Rome is Burning" at some point in late October before the regular season opener.
Rookie Brandan Wright celebrated his 20th birthday on Friday. Wright, who enjoyed his best practice of camp on Thursday, was wished happy birthday by Davis during his TV correspondent piece. The former North Carolina star knocked down several shots during Thursday's scrimmage and his athleticism and ability to get his hands on a lot of balls around the basket will pay big dividends during his career. The Honolulu Advertiser did a feature story on the 20-year old in today's newspaper, which you can read by clicking here.
Young rookie Brandan Wright turned 20 on Friday. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Coach Nelson also was a guest on Rome's radio show this morning. As a humorous side note, Nellie was twice cut off while talking on his cell phone during the initial stages of the interview, so he casually took a seat behind the front desk at the team hotel and answered the questions on a land line. After he ended the interview, a guest approached and Nellie asked him if he "wanted a free room?" It seems as though a long summer of relaxation has the Coach in a great mood to start the season.
On Saturday, the Warriors will practice only one time after four consecutive two-a-days. After practice, the team's six International players - Mickael Pietrus, Andris Biedrins, Marco Belinelli, Kelenna Azubuike, Kosta Perovic and Stephane Lasme - will tape a special segment that will air on the Warriors' special preseason show. Additionally, Baron Davis (Saturday) and Chris Mullin (today) will sit down with Warriors TV for special segments on the show. The broadcasting department has elected to tape many of the interviews in Hawaii this year in order to give fans a real "training camp feel" to the preseason special.
As noted earlier, Matt Barnes was unable to practice again today, but the x-rays that were taken on his left foot were negative. To read warriors.com's recently-posted feature story on Barnes, click here.
Friday, October 5 Posted by: warriors.com
Day 3 Practice Video
Check out some raw footage from Thursday's practice by clicking on the image below. Also, hear Head Coach Don Nelson's thoughts on next week's preseason games in Honolulu.
Barnes Update: Yesterday, it was reported that Warriors forward Matt Barnes was to have x-rays on a sore left foot. The results of those x-rays have since come in, and they are negative, but he will remain sidelined for the immediate future for precautionary reasons.
Thursday, October 4 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett has been impressed by what he has seen over the first three days of practice. Find out who has made the strongest impressions on him in his most recent video blog.
Also, don't forget to check out the most recent full practice recap and come back soon for video footage from Thursday's practice.
Thursday, October 4 Posted by: Warriors PR
Day 3 Practice Recap
We are three days into practice and the overall feel for the club is extremely positive, almost to a point where you want to harness the enthusiasm. Assistant Coach Larry Riley called Wednesday's night practice the best second day of training camp that he has ever seen during his 15-plus years in the NBA.
During Wednesday's scrimmage, a few of the new guys shot the ball exceptionally well. Austin Croshere, Marco Belinelli and Troy Hudson were draining shots with regularity and returners like Stephen Jackson, Baron Davis, Kelenna Azubuike, Al Harrington and Monta Ellis were in rhythm, too. Basketball is a fun game when the shots are falling and it seemed as though everything was falling on Wednesday night.
Croshere is going to help this club. He has enjoyed a very good training camp and will not only provide additional shooting, but he seems to be a very vocal player who is constantly pointing out little aspects of the game to his teammates. He has the ability to stretch the defense with his perimeter shooting ability and he can rebound the basketball – two intangibles that will help him get on the floor for Coach Nelson. It will be interesting to see how often – if at all – we see a lineup of Croshere, Harrington, Jackson, Davis and Belinelli. Each of those players can shoot the three-pointer and create defensive chaos for an opponent.
Speaking of guys who can knock down the three, forward Mickael Pietrus arrived in Hawaii on Wednesday night and greeted many of his teammates and Executive VP Chris Mullin in the hotel lobby. Prior to Thursday morning’s practice, Coach Nelson asked all of the new players if they knew MP, to which Stephen Jackson quickly stepped forward and blurted out, "He's fresh, he is Mr. Clean." The chemistry and likeability of the players on this team is pretty evident by their interaction.
Pietrus, who spent the majority of his summer in France, looked in shape and was doing his usual things at his first practice – hitting three-pointers and dunking the ball. He told the beat writers that he is happy to be back with the team and that he enjoys playing for Coach Nelson.
One thing that is very apparent during camp is that this team is deep. The second unit at Thursday's morning practice consisted of Monta Ellis, Marco Belinelli, Mickael Pietrus, Austin Croshere and Patrick O'Bryant. And that does not even include the likes of Troy Hudson, Brandan Wright and Stephane Lasme. Coach Nelson might have a difficult time distributing playing time this season, but that is a good problem to encounter for any coach.
Baron Davis concluded Thursday's morning practice by engaging in a three-point shooting drill with Brandan Wright and Pat Burke. Wright does not have three-point shooting range that he would utilize in a game at this point, but he did show some surprising range during the drill, knocking down several shots from behind the arc. Wright has demonstrated very good quickness around the basket and his athleticism will allow him to eventually become a very good NBA player.
Ric Bucher of ESPN visited practice on Thursday morning and spoke briefly with Coach Nelson, Stephen Jackson, Marco Belinelli and Andris Biedrins. Bucher visited the Lakers camp in Honolulu on Tuesday and Wednesday and will post a Warriors story on ESPN.com at some point in the next two days. During his interview with Andris, he asked him what new aspect of his game we can expect to see this season and the young Latvian replied, smiling, "my three-pointer."
Coach Nelson has called Al Harrington the best player in training camp so far. (photo: Jordan Murph)
I'm not sure anyone is anxious for Manute Bol, Part ll. However, Coach Nelson did indicate after practice that he has installed a play in the offense for Andris this season. Nellie said they ran a play for Andris eight times last season and he scored on four occasions. Andris was given an opportunity to expand his offensive arsenal during an Olympic Qualifying tournament in Europe this summer and it will be interesting to see how much he can develop offensively over the next couple of seasons.
One player who won’t be able further develop his game in the short term is forward Matt Barnes, who became the first player to miss practice time during training camp on Thursday. He did not practice during the morning session due to a sore left foot and is scheduled for x-rays at some point in the next 24 hours (Update: The x-rays on Matt’s foot were negative, but he will remain sidelined for the immediate future for precautionary reasons.)
Despite Barnes being sidelined for the time being, the entire team is in great shape for this early in the season. It does not appear as though a single player is out of shape or hoping to utilize training camp as an avenue to get into shape.
Following Thursday's morning practice, which was held in an auxiliary gym at BYU-Hawaii, Nellie told the media that Al Harrington has been the best player in camp thus far. You can really see that Al is in better shape this year and that his summer weight loss is going to allow him to be better suited for the Warriors' fast-paced system. He looks like a man on a mission.
After Thursday's practice, the four rookies – Wright, Belinelli, Lasme and Kosta Perovic – recorded interviews oceanside with TV color analyst Jim Barnett. The interviews will be used during next Tuesday's broadcast from Honolulu on FSN Bay Area. Coach Nelson has indicated that the four rookies "have looked like rookies" during training camp, but you can certainly see the potential in each of them. They have each played well in stretches of camp, but Nellie is referring more to the young players picking up the system and different aspects of the game that come with their transition.
Coach Nelson will be a guest on Jim Rome's radio show on Friday morning at 11:30 a.m. Pacific time. Additionally, Baron Davis will shoot a brief "training camp correspondent" piece for Jim's TV show – “Rome is Burning” – on Friday.
Thursday, October 4 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett attended Warriors practice again on Wednesday, and he shared his thoughts, as well as some practice footage in his most recent video blog.
Wednesday, October 3 Posted by: warriors.com
Day 2 Practice Video
As promised, here is some exclusive video footage from today's practice in Hawaii. Listen to Baron, Nellie and Al Harrington break down the first few days of practice and watch the team run through a variety of drills by clicking the image below.
Make sure you also check out today's full practice recap, and stay tuned for Jim Barnett's latest video blog.
Wednesday, October 3 Posted by: Warriors PR
Day 2 Practice Recap
The Warriors have been practicing at the George Q. Cannon Activities Center on the campus of BYU-Hawaii. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Baron Davis and Marco Belinelli are staging daily shooting contests before and after practice, when they line up about 40 feet from the basket and shoot looooooong jumpers. Both players knocked down several of their attempts this morning. Belinelli has a seemingly effortless release, even from 40-feet. Through the first three practices, Baron holds a slight advantage over his rookie teammate.
It hasn't taken long for rookie Marco Belinelli to impress Baron Davis. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Davis has taken a liking to Belinelli in drills. He is constantly encouraging the rookie to take open shots. He realizes that he might get a lot of easy assists this season if Belinelli can be a dangerous perimeter threat. This morning during the drills, Baron continued his camp-long trend of referring to Kosta Perovic as "Number 19" and refuses to call him by his name (all in a joking sense). Kosta reminded him this morning that his name was Kosta and Baron just nodded back --- "You're number 19 in my book."
Sidney Moncrief made his rounds throughout the gym at the end of practice this morning when all players were required to shoot 100 free throws (all players have to shoot 100 free throws at the end of every practice). Moncrief looks anxious to work with the players, not only on their free throw shooting, but their overall shooting technique. Moncrief was interviewed by Jim Barnett on the first day of practice in Hawaii. Watch the interview by clicking here.
After three practices, Kelenna Azubuike has probably raised the most eyebrows with his solid play during training camp. He has made open jump shots and has seemed more assertive. Coach Nelson has changed up his rotation during practice quite a bit, but Azubuike has spent a good majority of the time participating in drills with the starting unit (BD, Andris, Stephen Jackson and Al Harrington). The team is anxious to see Mickael Pietrus, who is scheduled to arrive in Hawaii later tonight and practice for the first time with the team on Thursday morning.
Last night's second practice was filled with a lot of contact drills and more running. Coach Nelson enjoys making guys run when they don't execute a play or drill very well during practice. And, to say the least, execution is not always at its best 48 hours into training camp.
Coach Nelson also credited Patrick O'Bryant following last night's practice, indicating that it might have been his best practice since he joined the Warriors. Nellie had also complimented O'Bryant's summer work earlier this off-season. O'Bryant spent much of the summer working out in Las Vegas and spent the last five weeks prior to camp in Oakland working out. It is very apparent during practice drills that O'Bryant has many gifted attributes to his game, including athleticism, the ability to block shots, his length and a nice shooting touch. It will be interesting to see how much playing time Nellie provides O'Bryant during the preseason, but the bottom line is that he is a talented 21-year old seven footer. Those guys don't grow on trees.
When not competing on the floor, Stephen Jackson has been wearing a constant smile over the past few days. (photo: Jordan Murph)
Stephen Jackson, who has shot the ball very well during the early stages of camp, continues to be the fun-loving guy who has endeared himself to his teammates. Jack, as he is called by his teammates, is constantly running around and patting teammates on the back or, in the case of Stephane Lasme, on top of the head. Lasme, who garnered a nice offensive rebound and finished with a strong basket during last night's practice, received a nice slap on the side of head after the play. This is nothing new for Jackson. He walks on the team bus every morning and gives every person a fist-hit or high-five. Not just his teammates -- everyone --- coaches, staff and players. He is one of the most pleasant individuals you would hope to encounter.
The Warriors spent a portion of Wednesday's morning practice installing a few offensive plays into their system. Coach Nelson, who allows his assistant coaches to run the specific drills, is very talkative during practice and is not a coach who likes to sit back and observe. He is always teaching and pointing out various aspects of plays if something goes wrong. He is also not afraid to stop a play right in the middle and give the team an earful if they don't execute it to his liking. Last night, a few unnamed players took a little heat. With that said, it is hard to imagine a team that respects, likes and enjoys its head coach more than the Warriors. His track record provides instant credibility and some of the little nuances of the game that he has already pointed out during training camp are pretty amazing.
Thus far, camp has been injury free, with the exception of the expected bumps and bruises. However, with the fourth practice in the last 36 hours scheduled for tonight at BYU-Hawaii, players will probably begin to feel a little exhausted by the time they head back to the hotel around 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday, October 3 Posted by: warriors.com
USA Today Follows The Warriors
Greg Boeck interviews Troy Hudson at Media Day. (warriors.com photo)
As we discussed in previous blog entries, USA Today reporter Greg Boeck was given unprecedented access to the team for a feature called "24 Hours with the Golden State Warriors." Boeck covered the team during Media Day on Monday and then traveled with them to Hawaii.
The in-depth article appeared in today's edition of USA Today. Click on the following links to read the article and view a special photo gallery.
Tuesday, October 2 Posted by: warriors.com
Barnett's Video Blog
Warriors television broadcaster Jim Barnett traveled with the team to Hawaii for training camp, and while there, he will be providing warriors.com with a variety of video blogs. View his first entry below and stay tuned for more video updates in the coming days.
We'll be back with much more soon. Don't forget to read Tim Roye's Journal and submit your questions.
Tuesday, October 2 Posted by: Warriors PR
Time To Start Practicing
The Warriors arrived in Hawaii focused and ready to start training and practicing as a unit. (photo: Jordan Murph)
The team arrived at BYU-Hawaii on Tuesday morning at 9:45 for the first practice of the season. Prior to practice, all the players ventured into a reserved ballroom and had a little breakfast. The players do not have to eat at a set time, but rather have a two-hour window when they can grab some food. It makes for a perfect chance for several of the new players to meet and find out a little about one another.
To begin practice, Mark Grabow, the Warriors Director of Athletic Development, conducted his annual conditioning test. All players were required to run 10 lengths of the floor four different times (with about 90 seconds rest in between). The players were completely exhausted at the end, but everyone made the desired time. Those who looked especially good ----- Al Harrington, Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes.
The focus of the first practice was primarily defensive rotations. Davis and Jackson were, by far, the most vocal players during the initial practice. With four rookies on the team, BD and Jax will have plenty to chirp about. Under rules of the collective bargaining agreement, the team can only have one "contact" practice per day and the Warriors will make that the second practice this evening. Wanting his team to be in top shape for the beginning of the regular season, Coach Nelson announced that the team will have four sets of two-a-days to begin camp (Tuesday - Friday). The evening practice each night will include scrimmages and contact.
Prior to arriving at the gym, Coach Nelson welcomed the newest member of the coaching staff, Sidney Moncrief, who earlier in the day was named the Warriors Shooting Coach. Coach Nelson, who coached the five-time All-Star while the two were with the Milwaukee Bucks, hugged his former player when he saw him on the bus for the first time this morning. Moncrief will not be with the team full-time throughout the season, but he will be here for all of training camp and periodically throughout the season.
Baron Davis and company will go through two-a-day practices all week long. (photo: Monique Saenz)
Following practice, the team held their first post-practice media availability of the season. Several local reporters and photographers - including one from the Honolulu Star Bulletin - attended practice, as did the Warriors' two beat writers, Geoff Lepper and Janny Hu. The most sought-after individuals after the first practice were Coach Nelson, Sidney Moncrief, Brandan Wright and Baron Davis.
USA Today reporter Greg Boeck concluded his "24 Hours with the Golden State Warriors" after practice on Tuesday morning. The story is scheduled to run in tomorrow's paper and has been allotted an entire page that will also include several photos. In addition, there will be additional text and photos online at usatoday.com beginning on Wednesday.
The players were very receptive to having the USA Today reporter and photographer with the team over the last 24 hours. It is not very often that a media outlet is granted behind-the-scenes access (flights, team dinners, etc.), but the players and staff were happy to have them around. They all understand that this will be good national exposure for the team, and that it will be read by millions of people at airports, hotels and home on Wednesday.
Weather has been a little overcast and windy, but still warm, and it provides a great chance for the players to sweat and get into great shape.
Stay tuned for more blog updates, photos and exclusive video straight from Hawaii!
Tuesday, October 2 Posted by: Warriors PR
Welcome To Hawaii
Team captains Matt Barnes, Baron Davis and Stephen Jackson are making sure that the 2007-08 Warriors will again be a loose bunch. (photo: Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty)
ALOHA!!! Coming at you from Oahu, Hawaii, the home of the 2007 Warriors Training Camp. The Warriors left Oakland at about 3 p.m. on Monday on a chartered flight on Aloha Airlines, roughly 30 minutes after the scheduled departure time, and arrived in Hawaii at about 5 p.m. local time.
Forty-four passengers boarded the flight, including Greg Boeck, a reporter from USA Today who is doing a behind-the-scenes story on the team – “24 Hours With The Golden State Warriors.” The story will likely run in either Wednesday’s or Thursday’s edition, so we will keep you posted.
A couple noteworthy bullet points from the five-hour flight:
Head Coach Don Nelson and Assistant Larry Riley broke their own unofficial record by playing cards for the flight’s duration.
Equipment manager Eric Housen, who has been with the team since the 1985-86 season, said that the amount of luggage on this trip was the most he has ever seen.
Upon arrival, the entire team and staff were greeted by Hawaiian residents, who presented everyone with a lei. No matter how many times you go to Hawaii, that kind of a welcome never gets old.
From the airport, the team then had a one-hour drive along the scenic coast of Oahu to the North Shore, where the team was staying at the Turtle Bay Resort. Baron Davis, Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, who have been named team captains by Coach Nelson, kept the bus alive with their jabber during the entire trip. Last year’s Warriors team was known to be a loose and humorous bunch, and judging from the bus ride, not too much has changed on that front.
In between all of the jokes and laughter, Jackson attempted to soak everything in. This is his first-ever trip to Hawaii, so he spent a lot of the drive looking out the window and taking in the beautiful scenery.
Like Jackson, several of the Warriors are making their first Training Camp with the Warriors – 12 players to be exact. In fact, only four Warriors players were on the team during the last time the team had Training Camp in Hawaii in 2005 (Davis, Monta Ellis, Andris Biedrins and Mickael Pietrus). Speaking of Pietrus, the team was happy to hear that he had accepted the team’s qualifying offer and would join them in Hawaii in the next day or two.
After checking into the team hotel, the Warriors held their annual pre-training camp team dinner. Nellie and Jackson addressed the team in a short and sweet meeting. Earlier in the day, all players were provided a copy of the team’s playbook and also a handbook which detailed the team rules.
One of the great things about having camp in this location on the North Shore is the lack of distractions. With no real night life in close proximity – Honolulu is about 45 minutes away – the players get the chance to spend a majority of their time together. They eat breakfast, lunch and dinner together, which is great for team unity and great for a team with six new players.
Hopefully, the players got a good rest last night because prior to today’s practice, Mark Grabow, the team’s director of athletic development, will run every player through a series of wind sprints. This test will determine who is in good shape and who still needs some work. Fortunately, several players have lost weight during the summer and the entire squad appears to be in excellent condition.
That’s it for now, but stay tuned for much more behind-the-scenes coverage of the Warriors at Training Camp in Oahu.
Monday, October 1 Posted by: warriors.com
Media Day Recap
One of the best parts about Media Day is that all the players and coaches are back together as a whole for the first time in months. This not only serves as a reminder that the season is almost here, it provides for an amazing amount of laughs. From Andris Biedrins taking over as a photographer at one station to Monta Ellis and Baron Davis cracking up during team photos, the day definitely didn't lack entertainment.
The players and coaches all assembled at the Warriors Practice Facility this morning to go through the annual event. They kept plenty busy throughout the day as front office staff and media members from the world of print, photo, radio and televsion were all present and anxious to talk to them. For photo galleries of the entire day, including a behind-the-scenes look at the event, plus portrait photos of each member of the team, click on the images below:
Media Day marked the beginning of Training Camp for the Warriors, but it was also the team's last day in Oakland for a while. The team will now travel to Hawaii to begin training and practicing as a unit. And while Hawaii is usually one of the most relaxing places in the world, the players on the Warriors roster know that they will not get much relaxation once Head Coach Don Nelson's practices begin. In order to play in Nellie's run-n-gun system, the players must be in top shape...and Nellie will do anything necessary to make sure that they're ready.
Stay tuned for much more coverage from Hawaii over the coming weeks. In the meantime, meet one of the newest Warriors by checking out our special feature on rookie Stephane Lasme.
Friday, September 28 Posted by: warriors.com
Things Are Starting To Pick Up At The Practice Facility
Training Camp is less than a week away, which means more and more Warriors have been showing up at the team's practice facility in Downtown Oakland over the past week or so. It's been encouraging to see so many players coming in ahead of schedule in order to start getting ready for training camp, and more importantly, the 2007-08 season.
The team will be conducting training camp in Hawaii for the third time in the last five years, which no one really seems to be complaining about so far. On Monday, the players and coaches will take part in Media Day here at the facility. During the annual event, players will pose for a variety of pictures, shoot promotional radio and televsion spots, conduct interviews with national and local media and get aquainted or reaquainted with one another. As usual, warriors.com will be there every step of the way to provide behind-the-scenes photos, stories and more.
Over the past few weeks we've seen the likes of Brandan Wright, Kosta Perovic, Stephane Lasme, Patrick O'Bryant, Austin Croshere, Kelenna Azubuike, Matt Barnes and Monta Ellis here at the facility, and the rest of the team should be arriving shortly. Don Nelson and his trusty sidekick, Lucky the dog, have also been around quite a bit lately, which really makes it feel like the season is just around the corner.
Both Nellie and Warriors Executive VP of Basketball Operations Chris Mullin recently spoke to the local media, and their interviews can be found in the Multimedia section of our Training Camp Central home page. Throughout Training Camp, we will be bringing you exclusive updates, stories, photos, audio, video and much more from Hawaii, so make sure to check back often.
In the meantime, start mentally preparing yourself for Warriors basketball season because Opening Night is only 32 days away!