A Letter To David Stern On The State Of the Golden State Warriors

Steven ResnickSenior Writer IOctober 15, 2009

NEW YORK - JUNE 25:  NBA Commissioner David Stern speaks prior to the start of the 2009 NBA Draft at the Wamu Theatre at Madison Square Garden June 25, 2009 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Dear David Stern,

I would like to say some positive things about you, but that would mean that I'm lying. Ok, fine there's one thing that you've done well and that is expand the NBA globally. Other then that, most of the ideas the NBA has put into place have been terrible.

Ideas such as putting the three point line back, no longer allowing any physical play, allowing zone defenses, the new defensive three second technical, the allowing of flopping, etc....

But, even worse is the state of my favorite team—the Golden State Warriors. Maybe it was the fact that when I was younger I lived in the Bay Area and at the time the Warriors actually had some good players.

I remember watching Tim Hardaway and Chris Mullin play. I remember the disappointment when Hardaway was injured. Latrell Sprewell coming along and the acquisition of Chris Webber in a draft day trade helped the Warriors back to the playoffs, but after that the Warriors franchise began to crumble.  

But, before we go over that the most memorable play from that era was Chris Webber's dunk on Charles Barkley. Here's the dunk

That was back in 1993-1994 season. The Warriors record was 50-32 and there was a bright future especially with having the young duo of Webber and Sprewell together.

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Again, that didn't last long.

Instead, Chris Webber and Don Nelson feuded and Webber in that offseason was traded to the Washington Bullets for Tom Gugliotta. Gugliotta was nowhere near the talent that Webber was and the Warriors didn't even keep him long enough to make an impact in the 1994-1995 season.

Gugliotta was traded after playing 40 games with the Warriors to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Donyell Marshall. So, basically what the Warriors ended up trading for was Webber for Marshall. It's not hard to say who got the better end on either trade and the Warriors got screwed.

Another player traded during the season was Billy Owens for Rony Seikaly. Seikaly was a solid player for the Miami Heat, but did not put out any sort of effort with the Warriors and stated he would never play for the Warriors a couple of seasons later.

Also, gone after 45 games was Don Nelson, so the creator of all the trouble was gone. Webber was gone. The Warriors named Bob Lanier interim head coach. The team went 26-56.

Warriors went from playoff team to lottery team in just one season. Oh, and it gets much better after that.

Rick Adelman was hired as coach for the 1995-1996 season. He did win 10 more games for the Warriors in this season. There were more unthinkable trades though. The Warriors traded star Tim Hardaway and up-and-coming power forward Chris Gatling to the Miami Heat for Bimbo Coles and Kevin Willis.

Draft wise the Warriors selected Joe Smith with the No. 1 pick in the draft. He showed potential as being a solid player for the team to go along with Sprewell, but Smith was traded after two plus years with the Warriors, which I'll get into that trade later.

The 1995-1996 was a pretty weak draft, but other notable players that the Warriors could have drafted were Antonio McDyess, Jerry Stackhouse, Rasheed Wallace, and Kevin Garnett.

Even with that there was improvement for the Warriors under Adelman—a 10-game increase in wins.

In the 1996-1997, the Warriors regressed to 30 wins. Note that the player the Warriors essentially got for Webber, Donyell Marshall averaged 7.3 points per game and 4.5 rebounds in 61 games with 20 starts.

Webbe,r on the other hand, played in 72 games and averaged 20.1 points per game and 10.3 rebounds per game.

There were no significant trades during this season.

In that draf,t the Warriors had the 11th pick, the Warriors chose Todd Fuller. Instead, the Warriors could have drafted Kobe Bryant, Peja Stojakovic, or Jermaine O'Neal.

Maybe the most disastrous season in franchise history happened after Adelman was fired and in his place came P.J. Carleismo quite possibly the worst coach in NBA history for the 1997-1998 season.

The infamous attack from Latrell Sprewell who didn't appreciate how Carleismo treated him. Sprewell, of course was suspended for the whole season and his contract was terminated, but the NBA stepped in and the contract was unable to be terminated.

As a whole the club won 19 games. More horrendous trades happened during the offseason and in the season. Chris Mullin was traded for Erick Dampier. Joe Smith was traded for Jim Jackson and Clarence Weatherspoon.

Both Jackson and Weatherspoon did not resign with the team after becoming free agents the following year.

Marshall was the leading scorer for the team, but it wasn't hard considering that Sprewell was suspended for most of the season, Smith was traded, and then there really wasn't much else who really was much of a scorer.

I could go on with how bad it got but it would be repeating myself over and over again about how terrible the franchise has been over the years. Now, who is the person directly responsible for how badly the franchise has been run?

The answer is Chris Cohan. Who's been running the team since the Warriors have fallen apart! Robert Rowell has also been an issue for the Warriors as well.

When the Warriors finally had success Rowell got jealous, he was mad that Mullin was making him look like an idiot. Mullin was able to get rid of bad contracts and bring in talented players.

Mullin was responsible for bringing in Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, and Baron Davis in trades. He also brought back Don Nelson to the Warriors and in this season which was 2006-2007 the Warriors had their first winning season since that '93-94' team.

Even more exciting for the NBA and Warriors fans was the fact that the Warriors sent the number one seeded Dallas Mavericks out of the playoffs in the first round.

Beginning of what looked like an exciting time for the Warriors. They did make one trade that was questionable after that season. In a salary cap move, the Warriors traded fan favorite Jason Richardson to the Charlotte Bobcats for Brandan Wright.

That 2007-2008 team did better than the playoff team in terms of wins (48), but were not able to make the playoffs due to the west having teams with a lot of talent. 

It was time for Davis to re-sign with the Warriors. It didn't happen even though Mullin had a contract extension that Davis agreed to, but in the end Rowell talked Cohan out of it thanks to Davis's injury history. 

Brought to the team was Corey Maggette a player who is talented, but was not a player that was designed for the system the Warriors had. So, the Warriors lost their point guard.

Also, during the offseason Monta Ellis was injured riding a moped after signing a contract extension with the Warriors. One of the only few positive moves that Cohan has allowed during his tenure.

There was no doubt that Ellis should have been punished for being injured, but Rowell and Cohan took it too far when saying they would void the contract if he didn't come back 100 percent.

During the season Nelson who is not the general manager told players like Jamal Crawford to opt out because he was not in the Warriors future, he apparently told Stephen Jackson the Warriors were in rebuilding mode, and also told Anthony Randolph to talk to his agent about being traded.

Also, during the season was the actual trade of Al Harrington for Crawford. The Warriors needed a point guard and instead of trading for one they brought in another shooting guard and this was basically Rowell's doing because pretty much all the power that Mullin had was taken away because Mullin disagreed with the punishment of Ellis.

During this offseason Mullin's contract was allowed to run out and he was not resigned. The trades in the offseason were again laughable. Trading Marco Belinelli for Devean George. Crawford got traded to Atlanta for Speedy Claxton and Acie Law IV.

On draft day there were rumors that if the Warriors  drafted Stephen Curry the Warriors had a chance of trading for Amare Stoudemire. Stoudemire quickly squashed those rumors by saying he would never play for the Warriors.

There biggest offseason signing was Mikki Moore! That's saying something right there and that is no talented player in their right minds would sign with the Warriors thanks to the mess in the front office and with Cohan as owner.  

Recently, there's been rumors that Cohan is interested in selling the team. Larry Ellison has been a name that has popped up, but further reading of a column written by Adrian Wojnarowski states that there's another player who would like to buy the Warriors.

This one apparently has already talked to your higher ranking officials about not only buying the team, but building an arena in downtown San Francisco!

Mr. Stern the ball is in your court. Over the past month and a half fans have learned that the NFL and the NHL has power over the owners in terms of who can own them and who can not.

Rush Limbaugh was just recently removed from a group trying to bid on the St. Louis Rams. For the NHL they refused to sell to an owner who wanted to move the Phoenix Coyotes to Canada.

It's time for you to put your foot down and give Cohan the ultimatum sell in a month or the NBA is taking the team over.


A Warriors fan

PS: Let's not forget that the Warriors have the record for attendance for a basketball game in California history.

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