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Pietrus is Happy

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Mickael Pietrus is the happiest guy in the league. After a disappointing year under Monty, he's finally playing for a coach who understands his game and can utilize his talents. He has impressed Coach Nelson enough that he's starting for the Warriors. Oftentimes people compare Pietrus and Boris Diaw because the two have such a similar background. Both from France, both drafted in 2003, both play for the national team. So when Boris Diaw got his extension people were going to compare the two again. Pietrus most likely won't be getting a contract extension.

But while Pietrus came out as the more heralded of the two -- he was drafted 11th overall and 10 spots ahead of Diaw -- it's the Phoenix guard/forward/center whose soaring NBA stock culminated in Thursday's lucrative deal.

Pietrus has until Oct. 30 to work out his own extension with the Warriors, but that scenario is shaky at best. Despite being labeled by coach Don Nelson as one of the top players in training camp, neither side says it is anticipating a new agreement.

Despite not getting an extension, he's still got a chance to hit a big payday next season because he's secured the starting spot on the team.

"That's why I keep telling everybody that I'm the happiest guy in the NBA right now."

To be clear, Pietrus was referring only to his defined role in Nelson's system -- where he has won the starting small forward spot -- not any anticipated payday.

"I'm not putting this on my mind, saying 'Yeah, I can get the same contract if I can do the same thing,' '' he said. "I'm just trying to play and enjoy my life and it'll happen when it happens."

How's Pietrus going to do this year as the starter?