Dime magazine recently dropped a list of players to watch this upcoming season. The names on the list were Raymond Felton, T.J. Ford, Jermaine O'Neal, Robert Swift, Josh Smith, Sebastian Telfair, and Mike Dunleavy. Here's what Dime had to say about Dun:
Maybe the most perplexing storyline to come out of Don Nelson's re-hiring as Golden State Warriors coach, has been Nellie's almost fanatical daily praise of Dunleavy in the press. Nellie almost immediately named Dunleavy tri-captain (along with Baron and J-Rich), and in his quest to go small and run his signature run-and-gun offense, has claimed that Dunleavy will "have his best years for me. He's a natural four, not a three." Nelson also has said the Junior will be his point-forward, and will initiate the Warriors' offense and has claimed various time that Mike is "the key" to making the whole thing go. That's a lot of pressure to put on a guy who looked like he was falling apart by the end of last season. Dunleavy's confidence was shot and he was struggling mightily in all facets of the game. So what is Nellie doing? Trying to restore Mike's confidence? Is he pumping him up in hopes of trading him? Or does he really think Dunleavy has never been used correctly by his coaches in the past and that he'll really be the valuable piece of his offense and is the most important cog in his system? We'll know soon enough.
Dunleavy's certainly talked the talk this offseason, but there's still tons of questions about him playing at the power forward spot. Nellie's a "what have you done for me lately?" kind of guy, so the first 20-40 games of this season might be Dunleavy's absolute last chance to shine as a starter for the Warriors.
What do you think Nellie is doing? Setting Dunleavy up for success as a Warrior? Hyping up Dunleavy for a trade?