After the madness of the NFL Draft died down a little (solid drafts by the San Francisco 49ers and Oakland Raiders I must say- in my mostly uneducated football opinion), we managed to catch GSoM friend Tim Kawakami for an end of the season Golden State Warriors wrap-up.
Jump for PART ONE!
Golden State of Mind: Not too long ago Monta Ellis and Andris Biedrins were anointed the "future" of this Golden State Warriors franchise. For various reasons it doesn't seem to be a given that either will even be on this team coming training camp next season. How likely do you think it is that either or both will be moved this offseason? What kind of interest do you think they would drum up on the trade market? Any potential targets?
Tim Kawakami: This might get to be a boring theme for these answers and this summer, but the only accurate way to address the Ellis and Biedrins situations is to say: We can't know until the Warriors' ownership situation is fully settled, which may not occur until the off-season is almost finished.
I can say that there's definite interest in both players. Memphis for sure has been asking about Ellis for years and offered OJ Mayo a few times, and I'd circle Oklahoma City if the Warriors want to move Biedrins for salary cap relief. If you look at OKC now, they've got everything you need to challenge or beat the Lakers except an efficient center--and if Biedrins is still that, he has big value for them.
But I just don't think the Warriors front office is going to have the stones or the approval to do anything dramatic this summer with Ellis or Biedrins. Don Nelson probably would like to move both, if it was up to him, but now it's totally out of his hands, Riley's hands and even Rowell's hands.
The new owner and GM have the right to make those kinds of decisions--that comes with the purchase, whenever it happens.
Golden State of Mind: Coming into this season one of the biggest question marks was whether Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis could co-exist in the Warriors backcourt. They did end up being the league's highest scoring starting backcourt tandem, but there are many obvious holes. Do the Warriors and people around the league think this is a good long term pairing? Any ideas on if Curry and Ellis like playing together?
Tim Kawakami: Again, that's a question the new owner and GM are going to have to address and maybe the main question.
I don't think the Ellis/Curry backcourt works, and I've said that too many times. The offense runs better when Curry is playing with a guard who moves without the ball and that's not Ellis. The defense would be better if one of the two guards was capable of handling a strong scoring guard other than the random nights when Ellis decides he has to play defense.
League execs I've talked to really like the talents of Curry and Ellis, but they're not sure how you play them together for long stretches, especially if Ellis gets stubborn and wants the ball in his hands.
Stay tuned for Part 2!
In the mean time make sure to check out Tim's blog Talking Points. You can follow him on Twitter @timkawakami
Follow GSoM on Twitter @unstoppablebaby
Part 2: Q&A: Tim Kawakami (San Jose Mercury)- Did Don Nelson back-stab Chris Mullin? + New Golden State Warriors ownership, new ownership, new ownership