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sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG/Kurtenbach Mailbag: Return Klay Thompson to the Warriors’ starting lineup? [+ 49ers]

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o BANG/Kurtenbach Mailbag: Return Klay Thompson to the Warriors’ starting lineup? Allen

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BANG/Kurtenbach Mailbag: Return Klay Thompson to the Warriors’ starting lineup? [+ 49ers]

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From: ala...@yahoo.com (Allen)
Newsgroups: alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors
Subject: BANG/Kurtenbach_Mailbag:_Return_Klay_Thompson_to_the_Wa
rriors’_starting_lineup?_[+_49ers]
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 by: Allen - Thu, 21 Mar 2024 02:50 UTC

Kurtenbach Mailbag: Return Klay Thompson to the Warriors’ starting
lineup? Will the Niners trade Brandon Aiyuk?
Sports columnist Dieter Kurtenbach answers readers' questions about the
Warriors and 49ers.

>Klay Thompson #11 of the Golden State Warriors reacts during the first
quarter of the game against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on March 03,
2024 in Boston, Massachusetts. 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 Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
By DIETER KURTENBACH | dkurtenbach@bayareanewsgroup.com | Bay Area News
Group
PUBLISHED: March 20, 2024 at 2:17 p.m. | UPDATED: March 20, 2024 at 4:15
p.m.
https://www.eastbaytimes.com/2024/03/20/kurtenbach-mailbag-return-klay-thompson-to-the-warriors-starting-lineup-will-the-niners-trade-brandon-aiyuk/

Great questions this week.

If you want to get into next week’s mailbag, shoot me an email
(dkurtenbach@bayareanewsgroup.com) or text (510. 479.0932‬).

Let’s get after it with a question I received from more than a few folks
this week:

- Is it time to put Klay Thompson back in the starting lineup? – Michael
in San Jose

>SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH - FEBRUARY 15: Klay Thompson #11 of the Golden
State Warriors celebrates a three point shot during the second half of a
game against the Utah Jazz at Delta Center on February 15, 2024 in Salt
Lake City, Utah. 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 Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)

I don’t see it.

This bench role works for the Warriors and for Klay. And the Dubs’
second unit is the one advantage this team currently boasts over its
opponents.

Plus, if Thompson is playing well, he can still close games. That’s what
really matters.

Yes, the Warriors’ starters need to play better. That didn’t happen on
Monday night against the Knicks, who pushed around Brandin Podziemski
and knocked both Andrew Wiggins off his game (though that’s not hard to
do these days.)

But that performance against New York isn’t enough to throw everything
into the shuffle.

What would the swap even be? Thompson for Wiggins? There’s obviously an
easy argument for that move — Wiggins has been woeful as of late — but
now you’re torpedoing your second unit for the sake of a marginal
upgrade (at least one that is inconsistent) in the starting lineup.

Thompson for Podziemski? That’s ignoring why the kid is in the starting
lineup.

No, the Warriors starting lineup makes sense with Podz. The rookie
covers defensively for Curry and on the glass for Wiggins and Kuminga.
His hustle and energy are necessary alongside his four starting teammates.

Thompson deserves plaudits for accepting and thriving in this role. It
seems dangerous to mess with that now.

[The rest is about the 49ers. -AL]

- Would the 49ers really trade Brandon Aiyuk? — David in Fremont

>San Francisco 49ers' Brandon Aiyuk (11) reaches to catch a deflected
pass in the third quarter of their NFC Championship Game at Levi's
Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024. The San
Francisco 49ers defeated the Detroit Lions 34-31. (Jose Carlos
Fajardo/Bay Area News Group)

They could, but they won’t.

Aiyuk is being cryptic on social media — flirting with other teams and
removing the Niners from his Instagram page. That’s par for the course
with a contract negotiation like this, particularly with wide receivers
who are, on the whole, weird and self-involved.

These folks can’t throw the ball to themselves — they innately know how
to draw attention.

Now, the Niners’ modus operandi is to pay top players top dollar. They
love “rewarding” their guys.

But they also wait until the summer to do it.

Nick Bosa just missed all of training camp. Deebo Samuel signed a new
contract on July 31, 2022. Fred Warner was paid in July, too. George
Kittle signed his contract extension in August.

The Niners don’t have much say in contract negotiations like those or
Aiyuk’s—it’s easy to figure out how much money and how long a deal for a
top-tier player should be. But the Niners can afford to wait longer than
any player—Aiyuk still has to play 2024 under his fifth-year option. By
waiting, they gain a bit of leverage in negotiations.

So they’ll wait. And Aiyuk will complain. And come the summer, they’ll
agree on a new deal.

Aiyuk is Brock Purdy’s favorite receiver, after all.

- The Niners have gone all-in on special teams this offseason. Do they
know something we don’t? – Brian in San Francsico

>San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch speaks to the press on
the first day of training camp, Tuesday, July 25, 2023, in San Jose,
Calif. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group)

They might!

The Niners have brought back George Odum, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles,
and added Chase Lucas, Ezekiel Turner, and Isaac Yiadom.

That’s a lot of special teams guys.

But my 49ers Gameday podcast partner Jake Hutchinson thinks the Niners
are loading up because the NFL kickoff rules might change for the
upcoming season.

I subscribe to the theory. (Just like you should subscribe to the podcast!)

The NFL competition committee has proposed a radical change to kickoffs.
The short of it is that it’s the XFL rule: teams would line up away from
the kicker, with five yards separating the coverage and return teams.
Neither team can move until the returner has the ball. The theory is the
lack of run-up should make kick returns safer.

It also increases the need for good open-field tacklers.

The league is also proposing a rule that would effectively eliminate
touchbacks on kickoffs. While I think this is a step too far —
touchbacks would now come out to the 35-yard line and there would be a
“receiving zone” between the goal line and the 20 — it might just get
the votes to be implemented this season.

And with all these special teamers they’ve added, the Niners might be
ahead of the rest of the league should that happen.

Given that this team appears to have taken a step back on defense, being
a top special teams operation could help mitigate that blow.


sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG/Kurtenbach Mailbag: Return Klay Thompson to the Warriors’ starting lineup? [+ 49ers]

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