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Andrew Bogut

The Final Piece: Golden State Warriors Season Preview

Starting Five: PG Stephen Curry, SG Klay Thompson, SF Andre Iguodala, PF David Lee, C Andrew Bogut
 
Key Bench Players: SF Harrison Barnes, G Toney Douglas, F Draymond Green, PF Mareese Speights, C Festus Ezeli, C Jermaine O’Neal
 
Offseason Additions: Andre Iguodala, Toney Douglas, Jermaine O’Neal
 
Offseason Subtractions: PG Jarrett Jack, PF Carl Landry, C Andris Biedrins, SF Richard Jefferson, SG Brandon Rush,
 
FACT OR FICTION: The final piece to the Warriors’ championship puzzle was Andre Iguodala. 
 
FACT. But his simple addition doesn’t make them into a title contender. If that makes any sense.
 
So why then would our glorious FACT OR FICTION breed such a strong statement? Because with Iguodala, the Warriors have found a perfect fit for their style of play, not to mention plug some holes in their very obviously weaknesses.
 
Offensively, it’s not exactly three-dimensional chess here: AI is a nightmare in transition, whether he’s starting the break with his killer handle and passing, or finishing with deadly propulsive efficiency. He’s just as effective in the half court set, creating plays from the elbow or wing, as well as setting up as a willing streak shooter. He’s now just another weapon that diversifies an already dynamic Golden State scoring blitzkrieg, which also harbors young developing stars like Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes. Iguodala will be key with them as well, taking up the slack on both ends of the floor which effectively buys Golden State time while those two blue chippers blossom from the delicate flower buds they are into a full blown bouquet of basketball dominance.… Read more...

Time to Believe in the Golden State Warriors? Season Preview

There’s a lot riding on those ankles.

Starting Five: PG Stephen Curry, SG Klay Thompson, SF Harrison Barnes, PF David Lee, C Andrew Bogut

Key Bench Players: PG Jarret Jack, C Andris Biedrins, SF Richard Jefferson, PF Carl Landry, SG Brandon Rush, SF Draymond Green, C Festus Ezeli

Key Additions: C Andrew Bogut, SF Harrison Barnes, SF Draymond Green, PG Jarret Jack




Key Departures: SF Dorrell Wright, G Monta Ellis, PG Nate Robinson, SF Dominic McGuire, C Kwame Brown (SIKE!)

Like so many Golden State Warriors teams of years past, the 2012-2013 squad has accumulated a lot of interesting parts with more questions on how they fit together. There’s no question that the franchise is taking meaningful steps to right the ship. The new ownership is an improvement and they seem to have a real plan in place, but it’s unclear how much that will pay off this season. 

Coach Mark Jackson looks like he will be able to get his team to play hard, even if he’s still learning how to teach the X’s and O’s. Shipping out Monta Ellis (although it was technically last year) for Andrew Bogut could be a franchise-altering move that allowed them to get real value in return for one of the league’s most puzzling players. No one in Golden State is kidding themselves that they have a championship team this year, but they certainly have a promising core and young talent that they can build on if this team starts taking steps in the right direction. As usual, the recipe for success is having healthy stars and reliable contributions from role players. 
Unfortunately for the Warriors, their biggest injury risks are Stephen Curry and Andrew Bogut, who are both game changers when healthy and the future of the franchise. If Bogut works out, the Ellis trade will be a beautiful gamble. Bogut can hold his own offensively, but more importantly he is among the best defensive centers in the league and should provide a perfect complement for David Lee in the frontcourt. Similarly, a healthy Curry has few peers in the L when it comes to playmaking or offensive ability. The Warriors also smartly brought in new back-ups for each in the offseason, trading for the very solid Jarrett Jack and drafting Festus Ezeli at the center position.

Although it hurts to lose Dorrell Wright and the defensive stylings of Dominic McGuire, Brandon Rush finally put it together last year and looks ready for a bigger role. Harrison Barnes appears ready to start right now, which is great news for a team that should desperately want to avoid starting Richard Jefferson. Carl Landry is no defensive ace, but he’s a great scorer off the bench and a very good signing for the Warriors. If Klay Thompson can build off of his promising rookie year and Draymond Green contributes, the Warriors could be legitimately 10 deep with young legs. This is a coin flip of a roster that could be fighting for the playoffs or considering tanking for a higher lottery pick come next March.

Best Case Scenario: Everyone stays healthy, the young talent continues to develop, and their rookies can contribute this season. Curry’s unselfish playmaking galvanizes the offense and the Warriors improve on last year’s 11th ranked offense. Defensively, Bogut anchors things nicely and the team defense becomes respectable (last year’s anemic performance notwithstanding). The Warriors sneak in the playoffs as a 7 seed, but lose to the second-seed in 5 games. Their performance leads to a lot of optimism about the 2013-2014. 

We want to see as little of this suit as possible, Andrew.
                                  
Absolute Apocalypse: This one is easy. Inju… Read more...

Instant Trade Analysis: Bucks trade Bogut for Ellis

It’s amazing to think that tonight’s deal was the first actual trade since January 4th, when bench contributing forward Mareese Speights was dealt from Philadelphia, in a three way deal in which guard Xavier Henry ended up with the Hornets and Philly netted a couple 2nd round draft choices. With a furiously moving schedule, Linsanity, daily Dwight Howard trade demands and a trio of ex-Nuggets arriving from China, it’s hard to say that we noticed.  So thank you Milwaukee and Golden State for bringing back the true original Instant Trade Analysis.
The Good Land gets: G Monta Ellis, F Ekpe Udoh and C Kwame Brown
Golden State gets:  C Andrew Bogut and F Stephen Jackson

Every once in a while, something will come along that surprises you, like a 72 degree New York March day, or that fact that Steve Blake’s wife is really hot. No, this trade didn’t necessarily surprise me, as Bogut, Monta and S-Jax had asked out of their current situations in one way or another for a few weeks now. What was surprising is that deal seems to work for both teams.

For the Warriors, the goal was simple: give new coach Mark Jackson a defense-oriented center that the Warriors could build around. Bogut, who’s gigantic Aussie frame resembles something closer to a WWE powerhouse than a NBA player, has been essentially a walking MASH unit the past couple seasons, with a dislocated shoulder, broken hand, fractured ankle, sprained wrist and injured back. However, when healthy, he’s arguably the 3rd best center in the game, behind Dwight and Andrew Bynum.

On the other side of the deal, Stephen Jackson is registering near career-low numbers in every category after philosophical differences (which is sports code for “Jax doesn’t like that bald bastard who coaches him” and “Coach Skiles thinks Jackson is a lazy gunner who only cares depending on the situation”) have made him ride the pine for the Bucks. Jackson remains a very talented player, but at over $9.2 million this year and over $10 million the next, the small-market Bucks can’t afford to pay an unproductive whiner. Jackson might end up being a steal for the Warriors, because, as he’s shown in the past when he was unhappy in Indiana and, ironically, Golden State, his numbers take a distinct bump when he’s dealt to a different team. Perhaps a move back to the bay and out of Skiles’ system will reinvigorate the still-talented Captain Jack.

The Bucks are taking a bit more of a gamble here, but still get what they’ve been seeking to acquire for the past two years in Monta Ellis: points. Scoring production, pure and simple. Perimeter swingmen, including Jackson, have all failed to a certain degree in The Good Land, and GM John Hammond needed to do something drastic to get the scorer who can elevate one of the league’s worst offenses. The loss of Bogut was somewhat diminished when taking into account how snake-bitten the former first-overall pick’s been, but giving away the player that they selected over Chris Paul and Deron Williams still represents a loss in investment. Though Kwame was inserted into the deal for pure salary cap reasons, Ekpe Udoh is just 24, in his second season (after a broken hand affected his play his entire rookie year) and is a defense-first player. Of course he won’t replicate Bogut’s production, but he is a young project that could turn into a Tyson Chandler-like defensive difference-maker. Another plus to this trade is that the Bucks will now be around $14 mill
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