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sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The Pacers have one.

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* BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The PacAllen
`- Re: BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. TheRobin Miller

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BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The Pacers have one.

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From: ala...@yahoo.com (Allen)
Newsgroups: alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors
Subject: BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond
Green. The Pacers have one.
Date: Fri, 22 Mar 2024 20:24:08 -0700
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 by: Allen - Sat, 23 Mar 2024 03:24 UTC

The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The
Pacers have one.
To protect Draymond Green long-term, the Warriors need to find a stretch
center to play with him

>Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green (23) celebrates his three point
basket against the Milwaukee Bucks in the fourth quarter of a NBA game
at Chase Center in San Francisco, Calif., on Wednesday, March 6, 2024.
(Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group)

Danny Emerman is a Bay Area News Group sports reporter
By DANNY EMERMAN | demerman@bayareanewsgroup.com | Bay Area News Group
PUBLISHED: March 22, 2024 at 2:56 p.m. | UPDATED: March 22, 2024 at 3:21
p.m.
https://www.eastbaytimes.com/2024/03/22/the-warriors-need-a-special-type-of-center-next-to-draymond-green-the-pacers-have-one/

SAN FRANCISCO — The Warriors’ situation at the center position is a
Catch-22.

At this stage in his career, and with the way the league has trended
with big men, Draymond Green is a center.

The 34-year-old Green needs extra maintenance, though. The 6-foot-6
defensive savant endures more physical punishment at center, banging
bodies inside on box-outs. And the Warriors can’t afford to put another
non-shooter beside him in today’s pace-and-space era.

“I can do it, I’m cut out for it,” Green said when asked if playing
full-time center is sustainable.

Since the Warriors made their midseason rotation changes, Green has
played almost exclusively at the five, save for a few minutes with
rookie center Trayce Jackson-Davis. Green’s defensive prowess and
playmaking ability have always made Golden State’s small-ball lineups
lethal. But they’ve always come in small doses to prevent running Green
into the ground, and that’ll be even more important as he ages.

“He’s best suited for the five in the modern game,” Warriors coach Steve
Kerr said. “Everybody spreads you out and makes so many 3s.”

To keep Green healthy and productive long-term, the Warriors might need
to save his minutes at center for high-leverage spots. The best way to
do that would be to acquire or develop a center who can stretch the
floor to play alongside him.

Golden State has seemingly come to the same conclusion. The Warriors
reportedly targeted 6-foot-11 stretch center Kelly Olynyk at the trade
deadline. They signed Dario Saric to give them minutes as a floor spacer
this year, but he stopped hitting shots in February. JaMychal Green last
year was supposed to play that role.

The Pacers, who come to the Chase Center for a Friday night game with
playoff implications for both teams, have a prime example in Myles
Turner. The 27-year-old center has often found himself in trade rumors
over his nine-year career because of his ability to stretch the floor on
offense and protect the rim on defense.

Since veteran center Kevon Looney has fallen out of favor, the need for
another center who can play next to Green has never been more apparent.
Green has been dealing with a back injury for several weeks and missed
last week’s game in Dallas to reset his health. He sandwiched two
excellent games — in Los Angeles and against the Grizzlies — with a dud
against New York in which he seemed to be laboring.

Before his 10-point, 12-rebound, 7-assist performance against the
Grizzlies, Green revealed that he needed to go through a “full session”
in the morning with trainer Rick Celebrini to get his body right. That
entailed three-and-a-half hours of table work, core workouts and getting
shots up. He thought it would take 90 minutes.

Celebrini kept telling Green “one more.” The session worked, getting
Green’s body in a “good place” and stronger, he said.

It’s still a lot for a 34-year-old to go through just to feel ready for
one game. The Warriors have Green under contract for at least the next
two seasons (he has a player option for 2025-26) and nothing’s going to
get easier as he ages.

Especially if he keeps playing 30 minutes of center a night.

“It’s definitely more taxing, because at the five, you’re involved in
every possession,” Green said. “Fours don’t crash every time, so you may
not have to box out every possession. At the five, you’ve got to box out
every play. Fives are trying to get the offensive rebound every play.
Even something as simple as that, call it 20 more box-outs a game —
that’s contact, that’s a battle.”

Green has complete confidence in Golden State’s training staff to get
him healthy enough to play, he said. Still, he said that in recent weeks
he’d overcompensate even his shooting motion because of his sore back
the day after games.

Performance staffs have more information than ever to make medical
decisions. Teams have cameras to track in-game player movement and
biometric-tracking wearables during practices.

Kerr said the training staff doesn’t factor in who Green is guarding as
a data point for health, but that seems like it’s already concluded:
Playing heavier minutes at center takes more of a toll.

A center like Turner could play alongside Green because the Pacers big
can shoot 3-pointers well enough for defenses to respect him on the
perimeter. Turner shoots 34.3% from deep this year and has taken at
least four triples per game in each of the past five seasons. Defenses
need to at least pay attention to him when he’s behind the arc.

The same can’t be said about Green, Looney or Jackson-Davis. Even with
Green shooting a career-high 39.4% from 3, defenses are still happy when
he shoots. Pairing Green with a center like Looney or Jackson-Davis
while also playing Jonathan Kuminga — who isn’t yet a consistent 3-point
threat — doesn’t provide enough spacing.

Turner has also led the league in blocks twice, blending the rare
combination of rim protection and outside shooting.

It’s not easy to find a player like Turner. Of players 6-foot-10 and
taller, only 12 shoot 3s with volume (at least four per game) and
precision (at least 34%). The list includes players like Kevin Durant,
star rookie Chet Holmgren, and All-Stars Karl-Anthony Towns, Kristaps
Porzingis, Lauri Markkanen and Paolo Banchero.

They do change hands occasionally, though. Boston acquired Porzingis
last summer for Marcus Smart and two first-round picks. Towns’ name
could be floated in rumors if Minnesota flames out of the postseason
early. Who knows where Jabari Smith Jr. stands in the pecking order of
Houston’s rebuild? Chicago’s Nikola Vucevic is flawed but might be a
decent fit and shouldn’t cost much in draft capital.

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Regardless of how this season ends, the offseason is shaping up to be
pivotal for the Warriors as their dynasty continues in its late stage.
To pry open their championship window with Steph Curry, Mike Dunleavy
Jr.’s front office will need to take a big swing.

A stretch center will likely have to come from outside the roster.
Besides Jackson-Davis developing a reliable outside shot to keep
defenses honest, the Warriors don’t have any internal candidates likely
to mature into a stretch five. And the rookie shoots just 55.9% from the
free throw line, which is often an indicator of shooting stroke.

The Warriors once hoped former No. 2 pick James Wiseman would develop
into the Turner mold. They haven’t found a true replacement for the role
since they realized he wasn’t the answer.

For both Green’s sake and theirs, the Warriors will have to find one.

Re: BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The Pacers have one.

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From: robin.mi...@invalid.invalid (Robin Miller)
Newsgroups: alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors
Subject: Re: BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond
Green. The Pacers have one.
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In-Reply-To: <utli0t$3dpoc$1@dont-email.me>
 by: Robin Miller - Sat, 23 Mar 2024 15:00 UTC

Allen wrote:
> The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The
> Pacers have one.
> To protect Draymond Green long-term, the Warriors need to find a stretch
> center to play with him
>

> SAN FRANCISCO — The Warriors’ situation at the center position is a
> Catch-22.
>
> At this stage in his career, and with the way the league has trended
> with big men, Draymond Green is a center.
>
> The 34-year-old Green needs extra maintenance, though. The 6-foot-6
> defensive savant endures more physical punishment at center, banging
> bodies inside on box-outs. And the Warriors can’t afford to put another
> non-shooter beside him in today’s pace-and-space era.

I'm just not convinced this is true. First of all, the Warriors only
have two three-point shooters who scare anyone as it is with Steph and
Klay, so it's not as though they have four shooters to pair with Green.
I think playing Green and Jackson-Davis at the same time is perfectly
possible, as TJD is a scoring threat, just inside rather than outside.
In fact, I think having players who threaten both inside and outside
makes defense more difficult for the other team.

For this season, the Warriors really need Wiggins to rediscover his
touch from outside (he seemed to be on his way until last night), and
for Podziemski to develop some offense. Longer term, Kuminga will be
unstoppable if he develops a consistent outside shot.

--Robin


sport / alt.sports.basketball.nba.gs-warriors / BANG: The Warriors need a special type of center next to Draymond Green. The Pacers have one.

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