Slams & Dunks by Marc Stein

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 11:05 am
Slams & Dunks

by Marc Stein

I could understand Chris Mullin's reluctance to gamble on Ron Artest. Golden State was widely regarded as the Northern California franchise that would land Artest because Mully possesses more young and desirable trade chips than most GMs, but I endorsed the argument that it was better to save those chips for the pursuit of a more stable big name because Ron-Ron is too risky.

(Unless Artest's first 20 games in Sacramento have convinced you that his baggage is suddenly stored away safely.)

However . . .

No one will understand if Mike Montgomery really makes it to next season, as Mully has suggested with this week's Blame Me invitation.

I frankly can't see how Monty makes it to the end of this season -- this week? -- given how meekly Golden State is finishing a campaign that began at 12-6.

The Warriors are 13-28 since that start and are thus headed for the club's 12th successive season out of the playoffs. They're 8-20 in 2006. They were beaten Wednesday night in Atlanta, 113-106, to fall 5 ½ games behind the eighth-seeded Los Angeles Lakers with 22 to play. Add all that up and you have a team miles away from the group that finished a hope-generating 18-10 last season after acquiring Baron Davis.

You have a team that has stopped responding to its second-year coach from the college ranks, if it ever did. You have a coach who has never displayed the command of his NBA team that he had at Stanford.

The Warriors were being lampooned for their undisciplined play and overreliance on the 3-pointer even at 12-6. Now you're looking at a roster full of youngsters that appears to be checking out early and thus crying out for an authority figure.



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The Warriors' other problem?

As suggested about a month ago in a Midweek Dime devoted to Don Nelson, Golden State can't simply dismiss Montogomery and pursue the most decorated coach available. Nellie is the last coach to get the Warriors to the playoffs, but he parted with owner Chris Cohan on nasty terms in 1995 -- terms which almost certainly ruled out a reunion.

Now you can ditch the "almost." Nelson confirmed the above suspicion in an on-air visit last week with our man Randy Galloway of ESPN Radio in Dallas. Nellie, who turns 66 in May, didn't rule out the return to coaching that I and several long-time associates and peers expect as early as next season . . . but he did rule out Oakland.

Regarding the Warriors, Nelson said: "Chris Cohan is still the owner there and he sued me after I left there. I'm not about to go work for him. I don't know where all this stuff is coming from. No. 1, they have a coach. And just because I love Chris Mullin and he likes me, that doesn't mean I'm going to go work there."

Regarding coaching in general, Nelson said: "I'm not planning on coming back, but I don't know the future. I just don't. I wish I did, but I don't know what's going to happen."



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Two footnotes to all this Warriors talk:

Check around on the Internet to find the priceless picture of Nellie at the Oscars, a few rows behind his new pal George Clooney. (In case you've forgotten, Nelson is presently coaching a fictional NBA expansion team from San Diego in a proposed TV series directed by Clooney.)

My NBA Fastbreak colleague Paul Silas probably makes more sense as a Montgomery successor than his ex-Celtics teammate anyway. Silas isn't just a veteran coach; he's an Oakland native who has a successful history with Davis after their days in Charlotte and New Orleans.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 1:01 pm
Monty had a great preseason, lay off him. I don't know why, you guys have to blame all your problems on him. You are such a hater.
:)

I don't know who in hell, would disagree with u on this one.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:09 pm
Only person I recall having a good preseason was Mike Dunleavy... I've wanted to fire Monty since the 20th game this season.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 9:48 pm
Good to see an article that is right on the money!!!!!
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migya make the ring fall on ya

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 9:57 pm
The Real Newman wrote:Monty had a great preseason, lay off him. I don't know why, you guys have to blame all your problems on him. You are such a hater.
:)

I don't know who in hell, would disagree with u on this one.


I'm not sure where you're coming from. We had a 2-5 preseason...
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2006 11:15 am
Yoyo wrote:
The Real Newman wrote:Monty had a great preseason, lay off him. I don't know why, you guys have to blame all your problems on him. You are such a hater.
:)

I don't know who in hell, would disagree with u on this one.


I'm not sure where you're coming from. We had a 2-5 preseason...


I was being sarcastic towards 32.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2006 2:46 pm
Marc is on point, which is uncommon.......

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