When Warriors Team President Robert Rowell fist bumped with the team's "GM," Larry "beer caddy" Riley on draft day, the end was already nigh. Oh my, who knew? Oh yeah. Me. http://chriscohansucks.blogspot.com/2009/06/robert-rowell-revival-clipping-and.html
So in tonight's visit to Milwaukee, after a magical benching of Curry in New York (Cam Inman was spot on: Nellie deprived NY of the chance to boo or whatever they wanted to do to the poor kid), we should expect more bench time for Curry against a current Rookie of the Year front runner, Brandon Jennings. The guy the Warriors passed on for no reason besides, his name wouldn't successfully prop up a ticket sales push in time for the current crew of idiots in the Warriors front office. As I said before, correctly, CJ Watson is ahead of Curry on the true depth chart. Acie Law probably should be at this point, too. Assists numbers, as Stephen Jackson so nicely demonstrated en route to under 30 wins last year, don't mean shit outside a stat sheet vacuum. And Jennings passed Curry on that rookie list as of last night. He won't be the last. Curry can whine to his 30,000 Twitter followers and GQ readership all he wants, he's not worth the Sebastian Telfair-grade hype he's received and he doesn't really look like he ever will be. Oh well. So it goes in the Marketing Basketball Association game.
Incidentally, if there were ever a better time to boot a guy who holds power because of supposed marketing prowess (Robert Rowell and his Great Time Out!, etc.)... it's now. This is a Cosmic Fail on the part of the PR Department. Tim kawakami did great work with his list of Rowell's fireable offenses already: http://blogs.mercurynews.com/kawakami/2009/11/09/once-again-rowells-25-fire-able-warriors-offenses-more-fire-able-now-than-ever/
Rowell's constant turnover of racists and weirdos (remember the ugly Ghetto Prom business that got a senior PR guy booted 3-4 years ago... and Ray Ridder, incidentally, promoted?), plus the incredible mess of the PlantGate summer scandal, with Ray Ridder and Bob Fitzgerald posing as ticket-buying fans in Warriors forums, really should have been enough. These guys are slimy as hell and no one deserves the free pass the media gave to Ridder when the PosterGate mini-scandal broke. The guy is in control of his own bullshit and may have already thrown others under the bus to get where he is today. Covering his ass at the first sign of trouble was a mistake on your part, media folks. But Rowell himself, as team president, is mostly indefensible at this point as his Stephen Curry marketing directive completely tanks and Brandon Jennings and others show they've got the true NBA lead guard chops when 3 years younger than the shrimpy score-first Curry.
Jennings, for example, would win and lead the team to better places if they really wanted to replace Ellis in the draft like. they. did. Contrary to their spin at the time. In fact, as the interview transcript from Kawakami linked below demonstrates, he was excited to play with Ellis and the first words out of mouth, more or less, were run, run, and run. But he wouldn't have sold tickets for the first 10 games. About that... 10 games in and we're pretty much done for the season already.
Memory lane on the Warriors' point guard philosophy pre-draft:
Meant to do that:
Jennings talks like a player. Not like a GQ model. Warriors' institutional racism continues? (Hoopsworld lead trick):
Bottom line, as I see it, is the Warriors took the groomed, 22-year-old, professional MOUTH who was supposed to be ready (more experience, like Stephane Lasme!) and passed on all the difference-making longterm talent available. They took the little guy with the supposedly best jump shot from the ranks remaining but shoved him directly into an internal roster power struggle and asked him to suddenly become a viable NBA point guard after a (loooooong) college career of scoring first, passing later.
Now, David Thorpe and the rest of the intelligent, hard-working (non-gimmicky drunken) coaching and managerial NBA ranks know the jump shot can be improved at incredible rates with proper technique and training, and that cosmetics like NCAA PPG and jump shooting never trump more substantive concerns in system offenses and strong team concepts. Never mind defense, which the 22-year-old Curry looks permanently clueless about besides the famous Warriors hands-first deflection bullshit that only worked for 20 games in 2007 and means nothing now. So in an offense that could never claim floor space or true ball movement (Fast Break? What's that?) as signatures, just the chuck, the jump shot is of course the only offensive "skill" required. Iso-ball slop means lots of one-on-one drive (no kick, unless it's flashy and/or desperate abortion of a bad idea drive, far too late to matter) and tons of bad shots. As a result, jump shot skills are in fact completely WASTED on any position besides CENTER in the Warriors offense!
Witness, one Anthony Morrow.
Besides the false significance bestowed upon the jump shot in Nelson's drunken XO work, Curry's neurotic Must Pass self-consciousness results in tons of cross-court heaves and too-late deliveries. He doesn't actually see the floor in productive offense as of yet, probably because he's working so hard against his own coach and teammates as he searches for a clue about system and collaboration. But unfortunately, he's on the Warriors, a team he refused to even work out for before the draft. So don't tell us you're sorry, GQ. You rejected us on principle before you ever even met us. Don't complain now. You're not good enough to decisively overrule bad play and coaching. It's not your fault, but it probably means we won't have to make nice together for long.
So the Warriors, per all the pre-draft pundits' correct assessments, screwed the draft up again. They would have taken Curry over Evans, they would have taken him over Flynn, they took him over Jennings and a number of others now ranked well ahead of Curry in not only David Thorpe's shifting rookie rankings, but Cohan's Genius-O-Meter [Production + Projection - PR Hype], too:
1. Brandon Jennings
2. Tyreke Evans
3. Johnny Flynn
4. Ricky Rubio (Hate his Euro GQ hype but astronomical trade value)
5. Ty Lawson
6. Eric Maynor
7. Jrue Holiday (19 and being held out a bit until the Philly blow-up is done)
8. Toney Douglas
9. Jeff Teague (Behind Crawford, and rightly so)
10. Rodrigue Beaubois (Admit it... you don't even know)
11. Darren Collison (Elite defender already)
12. Stephen Curry (22 and whiny, benched for major PG matchups thus far)
While Curry gets the major free passes from the usual Warriors corners, Ellis, Jackson, and Randolph all want out already and Nelson is manipulating injury status again. Andris Biedrins, already the heart of major Warriors trade discussions, may have been intentionally injured by Don Nelson when he was played with an existing injury. Or, it may just be the benching before the trade. Steve Nash and Jason Richardson are doing the heavy lifting in Phoenix, although Stoudemire is putting up solid numbers and playing really hard in his mega contract year. Imagine the moody, lazy, selfish Stoudemire in Golden State. Just imagine it. Biedrins is an All Star in Phoenix. Period. Go for it, you hacks. And keep Curry all you want. Hilarious that you pitched him so hard just to sell a few extra tickets.
It's true, Stoudemire's injury and attitude question marks weren't going to move the needle like one of the major NY media market sell point picks has. So the planning there was solid, the strategy partially successful. Unfortunately, the Warriors forgot that the team's other residual chaos would override any short-sighted gimmickery. In fact, those pre-existing conditions, much like Biedrins' injury (and who knows? Randolph says he's totally healthy while Nelson and the complicit Tom Abdenour et al play talk point chess with a bored media/public), were only exascerbated by the cheap play from Fist Bump and Drunky on this.
This was all obvious from the outset, even as Dan Dibley plasters the forums, blaming the finnicky fans for the team's woes with his best impression of Jeff Kent vs. public opinion (Enjoy the games, people!). Now the latest reports have the Warriors considering moving Nelson to his "consulting" position (http://www.cbssports.com/nba/story/12514475/nelsons-abrasive-style-might-have-him-on-way-out) and throwing the woefully incompetent Keith Smart in as a free replacement option they can dismiss from his interim post easily at season's end when they hand the reigns over to the computer wiz, Stephen Silas. Seriously, that's the plan. They alienated Sid Moncrief or Nellie made it clear he wouldn't let him get a foothold with the organization, even though he's the guy they needed, Ellis' favorite. Cal Cheaney clearly was not a relevant Ellis mentor under the incredibly toxic set of circumstances the team promulgated before attempting any sort of reconciliation (we fly around the country to talk to all of our players in the offseason!). And now, of course, Ellis is the problem per the usual team talk pointers in the forums and the PR releases and media reports.
You know what?
There's far more to cover but it all heads down the same shit-stained hill.