Warriors (W-L): 0-1
Clippers (W-L): 0-0
Time: 7:30pm PST
TV: FSN Bay Area
Radio: KNBR 680
As Atma Brother #1 wrote earlier today, "... the last time the Dubs lost their season opener they made the playoffs!"
Our overflowing (and at times overwhelming) confidence is always tempered by the reality that there are definitely some problems in the offense and defense. Not having emotional anchor Stephen Jackson (wow, saying that about him is weird) for 6 more games is going to hurt, but its a perfect opportunity for young backups Bellinelli and Azuibuke to step up and show folks why Mullin and Nellie trusted them to fill gaps left by JRich's departure (and also the aforementioned Jax's suspension).
The Warriors face division rival, the LA Clippers, tonight in their first away game this season. Luckily, they too, are missing several key pieces (Warrior killers Elton Brand and Shaun Livingston) due to injuries, which seems to give us a much better chance of winning. The Warriors finally ended their cursed losing streak against the Clippers last year post-Dunleavy trade, with the Jax and Harrington combo at the wing positions lifting the hex that the older Dun had on his NBA fantasy basketball reject, Dun Jr. in all his years at Golden State. I'm predicting big things for the Warriors tonight.
The marquee matchup, in my opinion, is going to be how well Andris Biedrins matches up with Chris Kaman, who's recent contract (5 for 52.5 million) seemed to set the precedent for big men (that is, centers). With talk swirling around whether Biedrins is the most bang for the buck, I would instead urge us to look to Kaman as the barometer of Biedrin's cash value. Kaman, who by far is more offensively skilled but having his set of motivational issues, made his 3rd year jump with quite similar stats, averaging 12 points and 10 rebounds, on a Clippers team that also had also broken it's post-season drought of its own proportions that year. Kaman, when motivated, can get those hustle points that Biedrins gets, but has the ability to score with the left and right hand with a variety of baby-hook shots in the paint. And word is that after cutting his hair, this man is ready to deliver this year. Though many have claimed that judging a player based on offensive output alone is limiting to a big man's true value and if we are generally judging Biedrins based on his defensive capabilities on and off the ball, shouldn't Biedrins be able to play some shut down defense against a player of similar or worse calibre? And shouldn't that then ALSO be a quantifiable indicator of his worth? Granted, this game isn't a one-on-one match between the two, but if matched up together, I think it could be a lens by which to think about Biedrins (future) worth.
* Warriors by 3, wining off game winning 3 pointer by Bellinelli!
* Kelenna Azuibuke has several tight dunks
* Al Thorton makes a good poster out of Patrick O'Bryant
* We see T-Hud's album on sale on Warriors team store this holiday season
What are your predictions for today's away game? Drop your thoughts and comments on the game by clicking "comments" below.
Also, check out Clipperblog.com and ClipsNation for some interesting news about the game and about the Clippers!
UPDATE (Atma Brother #1): Warriors lose 114-120.
Stay tuned for the recap...