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Warriors Update – Stephen Jackson Goes, But Problems Stay

dan germanContributor INovember 16, 2009

OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 06:  Stephen Jackson #1 of the Golden State Warriors runs down court during their game against the Los Angeles Clippers at Oracle Arena on November 6, 2009 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Warriors Update – November 16, 2009 – Stephen Jackson Goes, But Problems Stay

This morning, the Warriors shipped Stephen Jackson out of town in the hope that the circus would leave with him.  It is safe to say, though, the fabulous disaster called the Golden State Warriors Implosion is a work-in-progress that can’t be FedEx-ed to North Carolina.  More on that later, but first, this morning’s deal:

To Golden State:

-        Raja Bell -  6’5”  shooting guard, small forward. contract: 1 year, $5.3mm

The skinny:  A good 3-point shooter, a better on-ball defensive stopper vs. 1s, 2s and some 3s.  High hoops IQ, good defensive team player; below average dribbler, does not drive well, rarely creates for his own shot.

-        Vladimir Radmanovic – 6’10” small / power forward. contract: 2 years, $6.7mm/yr

The skinny: best asset is his distance shooting for his size; a very good 3s guy; can run reasonably well for a big guy; weak defensively, is soft, a poor rebounder for a big, does not play with his back to the basket.

To Charlotte

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-        Stephen Jackson , 6’8” shooting guard, small forward. contract: 4 years, $8.9mm/yr

The skinny: Despite all that you shed when trading away the whole Jax package, you also lose a 20ppg player who is a defensive one-on-one stopper against almost anyone in the NBA.  A go-to guy who creates his own shot at any time (including times when you wish he wouldn’t), can run the offense and get others involved.  Of course, he only does this when he feels like it; is a much worse ball handler than he thinks he is.

-        Acie Law , 6’3” point guard. contract: 1 year $2.2mm

The skinny: A promising, strong point guard who dribbles well, see the court reasonably well, and has Baron Davis upper body strength to back down opposing points guards.  Never really got the opportunity to play extended minutes, but showed potential with limited playing time.   

How the Warriors fared:

-        The big plus: long term salary cap relief.  Perhaps this was the goal all along, with overall team improvement a secondary goal.  Go team.  Now the Ws have cap space to compete for the great 2010 free agent class (please stop laughing…)

-        The Ws lose offense.  Bell, at 10ppg, and Radmanovic, a 9ppg guy, can’t replace Jackson’s points.  Funny how it works out that the highest scoring team in the NBA may now scratch its head, wondering where the scoring punch will come from, especially in half court sets…

-        It is now Monta’s team as the offensive centerpiece.  But Ellis, as the only consistent scorer who can create his own shot, will need more help than ever as teams will now freely collapse on him.

-        The Ws are a weaker defensive team.  I’ll bet you didn’t think that was possible…

-        Raja thrived in D’Antoni’s Phoenix system; there is no reason to think he won’t do well in Golden State, except there is no Nash in Oakland, and Nellie is D’Antoni lite in a clown’s outfit…

-        The organization's overall noise level will drop for a while.  But after the Ws record goes to 3-13, then 4-18, no one will remember why Jax was shipped out, or care why...

-        Its hard to say losing Acie Law was a huge loss; that said, Law showed enough to think he might be a keeper.  We wonder why Riley and Rowell didn't include Speedy Claxton instead, a guy who won’t play two minutes with the Ws.  Hmm...

Bottom line:  The Ws failed to get the one Bobcat who could have made this trade a net positive, Boris Diaw.  However, given Golden State's pending implosion, the organization got some value in return.  Not enough, though, to change the team dynamics or improve the wins-loss ratio.

Nellie’s old Milwaukee buddies took him to a Springsteen show after the Bucs loss this past weekend to help him forget how bad his defensive adjustments are.  The Boss’s show is over; Nellie’s show isn’t, just missing a headline act.  The Ws move on to Cleveland tomorrow, no doubt inching closer to the lottery.  I wonder if the Ws are scouting next year’s Blake Griffin yet…

Maybe Chris Webber is right.  Perhaps Coach Nellie won’t get the 24 wins he needs to become the NBA’s all time leader in victories this season. 

So it begs the question:  how many losses does Nellie need to be the NBAs all time leader in losses?     

One last mention:  Baron Davis, Jason Richardson, Al Harrington, Michael Pietrus, Matt Barnes.  Now Stephen Jackson.  The purging of the best Warrior team in 15 years is almost complete.  Good going, Li’l Bobby…

As always, go Ws….

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