Order of Priorities for the Warriors
What does every Golden State Warriors fan really want this 2009-2010 NBA season? Being in the elite 8 in the west and getting in to the playoffs are obviously on top of the order of things for the organization and fans, but what would be interesting to find out is what other important and not so urgent matters would Warriors fans like to add on the list of order of priorities for the Warriors organization to ensure the success (either thru achieving that playoffs dream once again or just getting your money's worth from the entertainment value of the team) of this season.
Understandably, some of us will have differences in opinions. Most of us may find that what is important to others may not be the case for some. Which will only make for an interesting topic of conversation.
I deeply encourage everyone to list their opinions and suggestions. Anything intellegent, unintellegent, dim witted, thick, creative, not so creative, unique, unheard of are all welcome.
Here are a couple of things to start off this list. Some are just for fun and some are justifiable.
Passion for Fashion
A.) A New Team Jersey along with A New Team Logo - A modern version of the classic "The City" jersey with the classic color schemes (Away Games: Dark Blue with Bright Yellow trim / Home Games: Bright Yellow with Dark Blue Trim).
For the new team logo, it will be nice to see if the Warriors use The Golden Gate Bridge or the Caifornia Map on the backdrop, and then incorporate the original or maybe even a modern rendition of the Indian Warrior-Guy (more about this as a possible new team mascot ) which was the original mascot/logo for the team back in the ABA days anyway.
The highflying Monta Ellis along side the Sharp Shooting Stephen Curry and the Tenacious Captain Jack with the Springy Anthony Randolph and the quick handed Andris Biedrins running up and down the court in those new and improved team jersey.
Here's another interesting thought: Perhaps a new team Jersey and new team Logo will make the Bay Area a more attractive destination for Amare Stoudamire and the other top free agents.
B.) No one can replace that muscle bound Corey Maggette look alike mascot named Thunder except for a muscle bound Indian Warrior Mascot named "Apache". I can hear the loud Indian Drums as the Oracle introduce its new side show entertainment and the Warrior Girls dancing in those tiny indian outfits along side him as Apache tumbles and does his high flying acts as the new and more entertaining Golden State Warriors Mascot.
On a serious note: Let's talk about trade baby!
C.) So we all read and heard of the reports about the Stoudemire to the Warriors trade as having little to no chance of happening now.
I guess it's safe to assume at this point that Warriors GM Larry Riley and Coach Don Nelson are exploring other trade options with other NBA teams. One option that they might explore or could even be exploring now is a possible sign and trade with the Toronto Raptors. I wrote a column here on Bleacher Report back in February titled "How To Bail Out the Golden State Warriors". In that column, I suggested that the Warriors and Raptors exchange players where the Warriors eventually land Italian Power Forward Andrea Bargnani. It may seem as though that I have some fascination with the Raptors for using them again as a trade partner - I can honestly say that I am not enamored by the Raps, they just happen to be an ideal trade partner for the Dubs since the Dubs have what the Raps need and the Raps have what the Dubs need.
There were also recent reports that the Toronto Raptors expressed their interest in free agent David Lee and could be close to signing him, it's also possible that they are looking to sign him just to trade him and the Warriors might be the team they are talking to do the trade with. If the Raptors can also sign Marion as another trading piece, then we are in business here. The Warriors can offer the same package of players they offered to Phoenix which includes, Andris Biedrins, Brandan Wright, Marco Belinelli and/or Kelena Azubuike for Shawn Marion, David Lee and Andrea Bargnani.
Another possibility would be for the Raptors to send Demar Derozan and David Lee for Andris Biedrins, Brandan Wright and Marco Belinelli but I think they would much rather keep Derozan so trade option number one would be the likely scenario here. Do I even have to spell out the possible starting five for the Warriors. What the heck! Here it is then just to validate the idea.
Trade Option One: Starting Lineup
PG - Monta Ellis - Stephen Curry and Acie Law off the bench
SG - Stephen Jackson - Anthony Morrow or Stephen Curry off the bench
SF - Shawn Marion - Corey Maggette off the bench
PF - Anthony Randolph - Andrea Bargnani off the bench
C - David Lee - Ronny Turiaf off the bench
Some roster fillers perhaps?
D.) So we now have a new team jersey, a new team logo with a new team mascot, we also did a couple of reasonable trades...so how about the rest of the roster? Should the Warriors once again rely upon their summer league invities? or Should they sign at least one or a couple of the quality free agents who are currently available?
Here's a short list of free agents who fits the Warriors' style of play. Take note, these are also youngger players so there is less risk in signing them as far as staying healthy and being able to contribute is concerned.
C/PF: Zaza Pachulia; Brandon Bass; Chris Wilcox; Channing Frye and Drew Gooden.
SF/SG: Gerald Green; Marquis Daniel.; Ime Udoka
In my opinion, the Warriors would be smart to sign Drew Gooden and Ime Udoka. Drew Gooden improves the Warriors' rebounding and depth in their inside game. If Gooden's price tag is too high, then the Dubs should talk to Zaza Pachulia. He does best what half of the Warriors' roster can't-Rebound. He also plays hard like Anderson Verajao but without the annoying hair-do so watching him play won't be as hard to do.
Ime Udoka is a servicable defender and won't command alot of money to sign. He is another Gatorade protector type of player. He doesn't need the ball to be effective.
Run Timmy! Run!
E.) So the Lakers have Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to coach Andrew Bynum. The Magics have Patrick Ewing to coach Dwight Howard. The Bulls are looking at Sidney Green to coach their big men. These teams all have one thing in common that the Warriors don't, Quality Big Men that are worth spending the extra salary for a big man's coach's services for.
What the Warriors do have are a couple of smallish combo guards in Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry. So why don't the Warriors then spend some salary money on a Smallish Combo Guard Coach? Monta and Steph already have excellent offensive skills but what they do need to improve on are their passing abilities and floor general skills. Tim Hardaway might be the best fit since he was once a student of Don Nelson. Which could also be the reason why this may not work and maybe perceived as stepping on the Don's shoes. Focusing on improving their defensive skills instead wouldn't be a bad idea either. Gary "The Glove" Payton might fit as their Smallish Defenseless Combo Guard Coach to teach these two and even the other Warrior players a thing or two about playing defense and staying in front of your man.
A Warrior in the All Star Games? Now that's just Crazy!
F.) This would be just too crazy to expand on but I'm a Warrior fan, what can I say? Next to the dream of being in the Playoffs again this year is having a Warrior voted in to the All Star Games in February 2010. I'm still a realist though, which is why I only used the singular noun-Warrior instead of pluralizing it-Warriors.
While we're in the topic of All Star games, let's just dream even bigger and add the following events for a Warrior to compete in.
Skills Challenge: Stephen Curry
Rookie/Sophomore Games: Stephen Curry; Anthony Randolph; Anthony Morrow
All Star Games: Monta Ellis
Three Point Shooting Contest: Anthony Morrow
Dunk Contest: Anthony Randolph
Did we do it?
G.) To cap off this list of priorities, let's just list the individual achievment awards as one of the things to prioritize this season since we will be just kidding ourselves too much already if we talk about going beyond the playoffs.
Stephen Jackson should win the defensive player of the year award and should be included in the All Defensive Team.
Corey Maggette should also target winning the Sixth-Man of the year award.
Stephen Curry must win the Rookie of the Year award.
Anthony Randolph or Anthony Morrow should win Most Improved Player award.
Monta Ellis should be nominated as MVP and should be in the All NBA First Team.