WARRIOR GAINING STRENGTH

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 9:19 am
By Mark Emmons, Mercury News
September 21, 2005

Mike Dunleavy was working out in the Warriors' state-of-the-art weight room last week when a team employee carrying a camera approached and asked if he could snap some pictures.

``Want me to take my shirt off?'' Dunleavy joked. ``That will sell some tickets.''

The slender Dunleavy, of course, is never going to have the sort of chiseled physique that graces the covers of muscle magazines. But after a rigorous strength-training program this summer, Dunleavy has more noticeable definition, especially in his arms. And although Dunleavy said he's the same size he was last season -- 6-foot-9 1/2, 227 pounds -- he just looks bigger.

``I've learned that with my body type, I'm never going to be a bulky guy, so I'm trying to build my strength in a way that doesn't limit quickness,'' Dunleavy said. ``I need to be stronger because I plan on going down in the low post more.''

The Warriors, who open training camp in two weeks, have high expectations for his first full year with point guard Baron Davis, who was acquired late last season and who energized the franchise as a whole, and Dunleavy in particular.

Dunleavy, the No. 3 pick of the 2002 draft, is doing more than just hoping for a breakout season. He has put sweat into it. Dunleavy and Mark Grabow, the Warriors' director of athletic development, designed an off-season training program that would increase his strength and allow him to do a better job of posting up shorter opponents, and yet not cost him a step on defense -- which has never been Dunleavy's strong suit.

``If we wanted to take Mike up to 240 pounds, we could do that,'' Grabow said. ``But he's a swingman. He has to guard guys out on the perimeter. We want him to be as strong as possible and still be as athletic as possible. It's a fine line.''

Dunleavy stuck around his San Francisco home most of the summer so he could work out with Grabow four days a week. On this morning, he carried around an index card on which Grabow had mapped out the day's schedule. For 90 minutes, Dunleavy weaved his way through the Warriors' weight room, featuring equipment specially designed for athletes who reach 7 feet in height, as music blared at dance-club volume.

But where his light gray T-shirt really began to turn dark with sweat was just outside the weight room. Next to the Oakland training facility's basketball courts, Grabow has an exercise mat and equipment such as Swiss fitness balls and medicine balls. There, Dunleavy went through a series of simple yet grueling exercises.

For example, he would stand on two half-foam rolls, spread a few feet apart, and slowly do squats. Then he did them wearing a weight jacket. Then he repeated them taking turns standing on one leg, and then with his eyes closed -- like something out of ``The Karate Kid.''

Sometimes, Grabow will gently push Dunleavy, forcing him to keep his balance.

``These are killers,'' Dunleavy said. ``You feel it in the ankles because the foam wants to roll out. But you feel it everywhere, too, like in your abdominals. It looks so easy, but it's the most challenging thing.''

Grabow likes to create exercises on unstable surfaces so they improve balance as well as strength.

``The idea is to work all the smaller muscles of the ankle and foot and abdominals that you don't often think about,'' Grabow said. ``So he'll be doing a squatting movement to build strength, but at the same time, he's working on balance.''

After he finished Grabow's workout list, Dunleavy headed onto the court. Players who were in town -- including Jason Richardson, Adonal Foyle and Andris Biedrins -- assembled for 90 minutes of pickup basketball as well as informal shooting drills. Add in the time for stretching and icing down and it was a four-hour workout session for Dunleavy.

``Four hours might seem like a lot,'' said Dunleavy, who looked exhausted as he sat on a foam mat afterward. ``But for me, that's a lot better than working 9 to 5.''
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 11:34 am
dsigns wrote:``Want me to take my shirt off?'' Dunleavy joked. ``That will sell some tickets.''



I just may boycott the Warriors the entire year off of that comment.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2005 6:25 pm
So predictable, as soon as the contract year comes up Players try to get better. Why coulnd he do this 3 years ago. Its all about the bejamins for these guys. That is why I appreciate guys like Artest/Brad Miller
these guy actually play because they have Hall of Fame asperations.
Last edited by The Real Newman on Sat Sep 24, 2005 6:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2005 3:24 am
Right on the money Helloman!
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migya make the ring fall on ya

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2005 11:34 am
Brad Miller??? You gotta be joking me, the softest center in the NBA? LOL
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2005 12:59 pm
Hahahaha, touche DSigns
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2005 12:08 pm
dsigns wrote:Brad Miller??? You gotta be joking me, the softest center in the NBA? LOL


Just because he plays for the queens doesnt make him soft. I've seen him play since chicago and he is anything but soft.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2005 2:56 pm
Why do you have to dis Mike D for trying to better himself.
I think he relizes with the addition of Barron to the squad they have a legit playoff shot and is putting himself in the position to help them get there. You should be stoked he is working this summer insted of not.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2005 3:10 pm
... well, the reason I'm not stoked is because he was the #3 pick in the draft... he should have been doing this YEARS ago to boost his game and live up to the hype.

Don't kid yourself into thinking he's "working harder because the Warriors finally have a shot with Baron Davis" or something. #1, if that was the case, I'd seriously dislike him (why? Because that proves that without an established star on our team, he never tried his hardest and that's lazy to me). #2, it's his contract season. He's working harder to make more money. Dampier did the same thing (before leaving for Dallas). Mike Dunleavy is working hard so he can make money, not win games.

zshook wrote:Why do you have to dis Mike D for trying to better himself.


Exactly. Better himself, not the team. He wants more zeros on that contract.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2005 4:51 am
NOTHING MORE TO SAY

:D
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:57 pm
Lets just wait and see what kind of contract he settles for before making him out to be all about the money. Anyway more power to him if is trying to make himself more valuable. I personaly hope it works, THAT would make the Warriors a better, stronger team.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 4:11 pm
The question always is - Why didn't he try to get better from the beginning of his nba career???? It has to be about the money more than anything else!!!!
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 5:21 pm
I agree. If he wasn't trying to get a little job security (and a couple bucks while he's at it), he would have done this two or three years ago. The fact that he's just now starting to push himself shows that he has put out little to no effort in trying to grow during his NBA career.

I was somebody who was upset that we picked Mike Dunleavy to begin with (we had Antawn Jamison at the time... why would we use our #3 pick to draft another small forward?) Nevertheless, I watched him with an opened mind and tried to see what the Warriors saw in him. Regardless of what the Warriors were looking at, I saw a lazy college player who wasn't putting any effort into improving. He's always been able to spot open threes. He's always been able to drive the lane (when opened). He's always been decent from midrange. He's never had anything but average defense. And his other skills are all average to poor. Nothing has changed since his days at Duke.

He's finally trying to put on a couple more pounds of muscle so he can put up better numbers so he can get a new, larger contract at the end of the season (maybe even for another team! There's no guarentee that he'll resign). Like I said, Eric Dampier did the same thing. He twiddled his thumbs and dragged his ass his entire Golden State career until his final season, where he put up all-star numbers so he could get more cash. I don't see how you can say any different for Mike?
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 6:47 pm
Really does look disgusting when a guy has the ability to play quite well (like Dampier and some other players have shown in contract seasons) but instead give half hearted efforts and don't even try to do their jobs properly and with some dignity!
Guys like that should not be given anything! The nba has just become a haven to get rich without much effort and that is why alot of European players, who do not have that great athleticism but do work their arses off, are able to go to the U.S.A and make an impact and become popular and even get rewarded for it with the money.

IT IS ALL ABOUT EFFORT AND RESPECT - SELF RESPECT I THINK!!!!!!!!
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 7:36 pm
Well said. Work ethic seems to be a dying art in the current game. Where are the Chris Mullin's and Larry Bird's of today? Our hardest worker is Troy Murphy, but I never hear stories about his endless hours in the gym practicing his jumper. Basketball is a game of practice. Sure, the game is played primarily above the rim nowadays, but the Euro players have proved that skilled athletes are still highly valued as well. With the influx of all the young stars who were born in the air, tireless effort and practice seem like chores instead of mandatory actions towards a better game. I'd take a hard worker over a naturally gifted athlete any day.
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