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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2005 2:31 am
Posted on Sat, Dec. 24, 2005
Diogu's big game can't stop Warriors' 4th loss in rowBy Marcus Thompson IIKnight RidderAUBURN HILLS, Mich. - Apparently, rookie forward Ike Diogu doesn't need to know very many plays to produce.
With pretty much two offensive sets and with his knack for scoring, Diogu had his best NBA game Friday with 27 points on 13-for-15 shooting in the Warriors' 97-85 loss to the Detroit Pistons at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Diogu played 32 minutes and had seven rebounds. He scored 13 points in the fourth quarter, nearly leading the Warriors to an improbable comeback. Instead, the Warriors lost their fourth in a row to finish their trip 1-4.
Nevertheless, it looks as if somebody has earned more playing time.
``No question,'' Warriors Coach Mike Montgomery said. ``No question.''
Diogu's minutes have been limited since his hot start, when he averaged 11 points and five rebounds in 17.3 minutes his first four games. He played 10 minutes or more just three times in the next 10 games.
Entering Friday, Diogu had totaled 17 minutes on this trip, including a game at Toronto on Dec. 16 in which he didn't play. Meanwhile, the Warriors (14-13) were dominated inside. The first four games of this trip combined, they were outscored in the paint 188-110 and outrebounded 174-141.
Montgomery had been hesitant to go to Diogu because the rookie was behind in his understanding of the offense after missing the exhibition season and the first 12 games because of a broken left hand. Diogu also struggled defensively when he did play, getting in foul trouble quickly because of his inexperience defending the post.
But Diogu said he has a grasp of the offense, especially the center position, where he has been working most recently.
``If you can play basketball, you can play basketball,'' Diogu said. ``I consider myself to be a basketball player. I'm a low-post player. I've been playing against NBA players for a real long time -- even though this is my first year in the league -- in the summertime with guys like Amare Stoudemire and Shawn Marion. I'm pretty confident that when I get the ball down there, I'm able to score.''
Montgomery is likely to go back to subbing Diogu for center Adonal Foyle and moving forward Troy Murphy over to center, which is what he did early on. Diogu's inside scoring could be just what the Warriors need to open up their offense.
Montgomery went with Diogu on Friday because he got fed up with the struggles of Foyle, who missed three point-blank shots and dropped an easy pass in seven-plus first-quarter minutes.
``The issue really was just guys not catching the ball,'' Montgomery said. ``I mean Baron (Davis) did a nice job, drilled it in there under control. They're layups, and it just kills us. We knew Ike could catch those. If we were able to get those, we knew Ike could convert them. And he did.''
Foyle played less than six minutes the rest of the way, finishing with two points on 1-for-5 shooting with six rebounds, two assists and a block. He didn't play in the fourth quarter. Neither did forward Mike Dunleavy. Murphy played just over a minute as Montgomery went mostly with Diogu, Zarko Cabarkapa and Derek Fisher -- alongside Davis and Jason Richardson -- in the final period.
That unit went on a 16-5 run to trim Detroit's lead to 88-81 with 4:06 left. Diogu had nine points during the run.
``Thirteen for 15. That's wonderful,'' said Foyle, whose back has been bothering him. ``With 82 games a year, the more players you have and the different skills that they bring, the better. It's the end of the trip and he finally got to play some minutes and he took advantage of it. Look at the guys and it didn't look like we had a lot of legs. Somebody came off the bench and played well. That's what a team is supposed to do.''
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2005 6:37 am
Adonal Foyle at least is a nice guy and all of us should not forget that!
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2005 2:53 am
Mike Montgomery
On tonight's game:
"I thought Ike Diogu did well. He made some really good plays. But we got from Adonal Foyle exactly what we hoped. He came in, was a factor late, in terms of blocked shots. He actually got a steal and ran the length. That was the best game he had. Of course Fisher made the big play late and Jason Richardson was pretty good. He was our go-to guy, just like Pierce was for them."
On the Celtics:
"I don’t think I want to guard Pierce with five or six seconds left or Ricky Davis to not be able to get a shot in that situation. So we got real fortunate there."

Ike Diogu
On his first NBA start:
"It was all right. I got in foul trouble, but I was being aggressive. I was aggressive on both ends of the floor. I guess I was too aggressive."
On whether he'll be staying in the starting lineup:
"Who knows? That’s all up to Coach. If Coach feels that it’s best for the team, then I’ll be there to play."

On the importance of the win:
"It was real important. If we’re going to talk about making the playoffs, then we have to beat teams like the Celtics. The Celtics are a good team, but we felt like we could beat them coming into tonight. We got it done tonight."


Adonal Foyle
On his aggressive play off the bench:
“We needed a win. Each of us wanted to be at our best tonight, in order to get a win. It was important for me to come off the bench and help my team get this win. …All you can do is be in position. If players attack me, I’m going to defend the basket. Tonight they attacked me and I got some blocks and rebounds. In the grand scheme of things, anything that helps this team win is a good thing. I can only control the things that I can control. My job is to play basketball. Whatever capacity I play, is what I play. That decision is for the people with much more brain power than me to figure out—not me."

Jason Richardson
On tonight's win:
"I don’t think we necessarily lost our confidence, guys were a little down, but winning cures all that. I’m glad we got this win tonight, we really wanted to get this one and we all played hard."

Derek Fisher
On tonight's win:
"This basketball team and Adonal Foyle showed a lot of character tonight. A lot of guys in his shoes would have hung their heads and been frustrated. They probably wouldn’t have been able to come in and perform the way that he did. It showed what kind of man and teammate he is. All of us can learn from him as we move forward with the season."
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2005 3:28 am
I'm happy for Foyle. He was playing so bad lately, he needed a good game to recover some confidence. And I think he's best suited as a backup center.

Hopefully, he can keep playing the same way he did against the celts...
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2005 3:45 am
Yea, Foyle played wel and that will take the Warriors a long way as he doesn't usually perform that way
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2005 6:34 pm
Posted on Thu, Dec. 29, 2005
Warriors upend CelticsFoyle's an unlikely hero as Golden State snaps its five-game losing streakBy Joe StiglichCONTRA COSTA TIMESOAKLAND - Some contributions were expected by Warriors fans Wednesday night at the Arena.
Namely, 36 points from Jason Richardson.
Others couldn't be fathomed, such as center Adonal Foyle making clutch plays down the stretch in his first game since being banished from the starting lineup in favor of rookie Ike Diogu.
The Warriors needed everybody to chip in to snap their five-game losing streak, beating the Boston Celtics 111-109 in front of a sellout crowd of 19,596.
Derek Fisher's driving layup with 6.2 seconds left broke a 109-109 tie, but the win wasn't iced until Boston's Paul Pierce dribbled off his leg and Baron Davis secured the ball and dribbled the clock out.
"It was huge," said Richardson, who hit 16 of 24 shots. "The guys are feeling down, and the only way to get back up is to win."
The night started with plenty of anticipation thanks to Diogu's first career start. He wasted no time getting going, dunking home the Warriors' first two points off a feed from Davis.
He finished with 12 points but just one rebound and fouled out with 4:35 left in the game.
Diogu gave way to Foyle, who provided the kind of spark off the bench that was missing with him in the starting lineup.
Foyle had seven points, six rebounds and five blocked shots in 22 minutes.
After relieving Diogu in the fourth, he rejected a Pierce shot with the Warriors leading 105-102.
He stuffed home a putback dunk to make it 107-104 at the 2:11 mark.
And he came up with a critical defensive sequence with time winding down.
With the score tied at 109, Foyle provided help defense to stop Pierce (28 points) in the lane. When Pierce kicked it out, Foyle got a hand in Mark Blount's face as he missed a jumper.
That set the stage for Fisher's game-winning drive.
"We needed a win," Foyle said. "It was important for me to come off the bench and help my team get this win."
But Foyle's most popular play came in the third quarter, when he stole a pass in the open court, took the ball coast to coast and was fouled going for a layup.
It wasn't exactly Magic Johnson-like ballhandling, but Foyle still drew a standing ovation from the Arena crowd.
The Warriors led 58-57 at halftime as neither team bothered with defense.
Boston shot 61 percent from the field (25-for-41) over the first two quarters, while the Warriors countered with 23-for-39 shooting (59 percent).
The teams put on an amazing offensive show in the first quarter, combining to make 34 of 48 shots from the floor as the Celtics took a 38-37 lead.
Each bucket was matched by another one at the opposite end.
Golden State seemed energized with the up-tempo pace. It registered 30 assists (12 from Davis) and got several easy baskets in transition.
"When you go through tough times, you've got to come together," said Mike Dunleavy, who had 15 points, seven assists and six rebounds. "I think we played well together (in) passing the ball. I think it's just good to see everybody sharing the ball."
Troy Murphy added 17 points.
The Warriors defense?
Still a work in progress.
The Celtics still found numerous open lanes to the basket and hurt the Warriors on the offensive boards, but coach Mike Montgomery wasn't about to complain.
His team returned to the win column, with a three-game road trip starting in Dallas on Friday.
"It's not like we weren't (defending Boston's shooters) most of the time," he said. "They made every shot they took, and they went to the (low) post like we knew they would."
Notes: A bizarre moment took place in the third quarter. The crowd got all over Dunleavy for kicking the ball out of the low post and passing up a shot. Dunleavy gestured to the crowd with his hands as if to say "Relax, already!" He did the same thing moments later after he nailed an outside jumper. Dunleavy was not amused after. "I'm really tired of the negativity around here," he said. "We're trying our best. We play hard. If they're going to come out as fans, they shouldn't be negative. I didn't see enough (Boston Celtics) green out there to get so many boos."
Last edited by O.G. Broe on Fri Dec 30, 2005 11:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2005 5:28 am
People are just fed up with dun playing bad and they want results! One good game is not going to please people :wink:
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2006 8:27 pm
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WARRIORS NOTEBOOK
Diogu goes back to backup duty
Janny Hu, Chronicle Staff Writer

Thursday, January 19, 2006
Coach Mike Montgomery said Wednesday that Adonal Foyle will remain the Warriors' starting center for the "near future," thereby returning Golden State to its regular starting lineup and shifting Ike Diogu to more backup duty at his natural power-forward spot.

"Ike's got to be a '4' at some point, that's just some place we've got to get him to," Montgomery said. "We avoided doing that a little bit because we didn't want to try to put two positions at him. ... But the reality is, in the long haul, he's probably a '4'. Size-wise, he's got to be a 4'. "

Diogu debuted as the starting center on Dec. 26 after a breakout offensive performance against Detroit. Despite often being overmatched on defense, Montgomery stayed with the rookie for eight straight games, including last week's loss to Miami and 7-foot-2 center Shaquille O'Neal.

Montgomery later labeled the defensive assignment as unfair to Diogu, who is listed at 6-8, but is probably closer to 6-7.

"There aren't a whole lot of '5' guys in the league at that size," Montgomery said. "It's almost not fair to him, putting him there and expecting him to (matchup). He's a classic '4' guy who can play the low post and shoot from outside."

Regardless of where Diogu plays, the Warriors should enjoy increased flexibility with their lineups now that Foyle is starting again and swingman Mickael Pietrus is healthy.

Montgomery said Pietrus can play anywhere from shooting guard to power forward in the right situation. He is also a spark on offense and defense -- he scored 19 points in 15 minutes against Seattle on Monday and figures to be key in defending Cleveland's LeBron James on Friday night.

Pietrus' return is a double boost for the Warriors, who had only Derek Fisher as a reliable scorer off the bench for much of the season.

"We were thin," Jason Richardson said. "Guys have bad games, it was kind of hard to have somebody to come in and lift the team up."

Added Montgomery: "Knowing that we've got people that can come in and play different positions, maybe that keeps (players) on their toes a little bit more."

Question mark: Don't count on rookie Chris Taft to be among Golden State's options. The rookie has averaged 8.4 minutes in 17 games, but has been in and out of Warriors practices since injuring his back in the summer.

"There's nothing we can do," Montgomery said. "His back flares up. He hasn't had any continuity. And so right now, we just can't count on him."

And that dependability could be a long time coming. Asked if he's liked what he has seen from Taft in limited minutes, Montgomery said "he's not been there enough to even know."

Briefly: Vice president Chris Mullin heads to St. John's this weekend as the school bestows "Legacy Honors" on 10 of its former basketball players. Among those recognized are Mullin, Lou Carnesecca, Joe Lapchick and Mark Jackson.

St. John's will hold an official celebration in Queens on Friday and a halftime ceremony during Saturday's Pittsburgh-St. John's game at Madison Square Garden.

"Much appreciated," Mullin said. "It's a celebration of the past, but I look forward to it. I get to see a lot of people that were instrumental in my development and, to this day, are still a part of my life."

E-mail Janny Hu at jhu@sfchronicle.com.
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