Warriors’ Bob Myers on testing: “We’re treating ourselves like people. We’re not better than anybody.”

BASKETBALL NETWORK

NYC mayor Bill de Blasio put the NBA under the spotlight with a tweet criticizing the fact the Brooklyn Nets all got tested as a precaution while there are critically ill patients waiting still waiting for their tests. Nets and Thunder officials defended their organizations by saying they got the tests in private facilities and paid out of pocket, not to burden the public healthcare system.

Your mileage may vary with this explanation, but there are other ways of doing things, and the Golden State Warriors are proof. The Warriors were scheduled to play the Nets in San Francisco on the night the league suspended the season. The game didn’t happen, but it’s possible that players from both teams spent time together that night, mainly because Kevin Durant was in town with the Nets. Durant and several other Brooklyn players tested positive, meaning the Warriors can reasonably suspect they could be infected.

But unlike other NBA teams, the Warriors didn’t test anyone yet. As recommended by public health officials, particularly in a time where testing is in low supply, the Warriors are not testing asymptomatic team members or staff (asymptomatic means they are not presenting any symptoms of the disease: fever, tiredness, cough, shortness of breath.) Everyone is put in self-isolation and has to monitor for these symptoms; they get tested only if they start experiencing several of those.

“We’ve been told that the testing is in short supply and we’re treating ourselves like people, which is what we are. We’re not better than anybody, not worse. Just a basketball team. … I’ve been told by our doctors, medical community, we shouldn’t be testing asymptomatic people at this point in California. … We’ve been told there’s not enough tests to do that.”

Bob Myers, via The Athletic

In translation, once Gobert tested positive, everyone who was in contact could’ve gone into self-isolation as soon as possible and monitor their symptoms. If they show symptoms within two weeks, they get a test and find out if they have the disease. That way, they are responsible towards themselves, people around them AND the Jazz don’t use up 60% of the state of Oklahoma’s daily testing capability and 20% of their total testing supply at that time. There was a way to do this more responsibility towards the community, but it wasn’t as convenient.

To be fair, Adam Silver was on The Jump last night and addressed this criticism. Silver said that the decision to test all the Jazz players was not made at the request of the Utah Jazz, but by an Oklahoma public health official. The following tests, as explained by Silver, were according to protocols developed with medical experts.

I’m going to take Commissioner Silver at his best and trust him the Jazz had no choice. But for all other testings, the protocol was developed beforehand with medical experts telling them the possibly best case scenario. It was still within the NBA’s right, as we see with the Warriors, to say that only people with symptoms should get tested, and everyone else remains in self-isolation. The NBPA executive director Michele Roberts said she was “disappointed” in the criticism players have been getting for getting tested.

“There’s nothing irresponsible — if you’ve got that information [that you’ve been exposed] — about trying to get the tests.”

Michelle Roberts, via ESPN

If you know some people need tests more than you do, and you are not in critical condition or even presenting any symptoms – yes, it’s irresponsible. Roberts talked about the responsibility of the Federal Government and their failure to make sure there are enough testing capabilities for everyone, and I fully agree with that. That’s the central issue in the United States right now, and no-one should be held responsible as much as those at the top.

But if you talk about your love of fans, appreciating the community you play in, and the importance of everyone taking care of each other, then you can’t pick convenience and be “disappointed” that you are getting criticized. We are capable of saying the Federal Government has failed us, and the NBA in this regard disappointed us. That doesn’t mean we don’t acknowledge and appreciate everything else the players and the league did so far. We can hold more than one thought at the same time.

Warriors pledge $1M to Chase Center employees affected by coronavirus; Steph Curry’s foundation to help feed out-of-school students

Ali Thanawalla | NBC SPORTS

Joe Lacob and the Warriors aren’t forgetting about the people that make games at Chase Center flow like a well-oiled machine.

The organization announced Friday night that it will contribute $1 million to a disaster relief fund to help pay all part-time and hourly employees while the NBA is suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak.

“The last few days have been extremely challenging for all Bay Area citizens as we deal with the hourly changes in this unprecedented situation,” Lacob said in a statement released by the team. “Our players, coaches, ownership and management have been focused on creating a way to assist our part-time employees. We are addressing the potential hardships these hard-working individuals may encounter during this hiatus in the NBA season. While everyone and every business is impacted, those who are fortunate enough to be in a position to help, need to help.”

“The men and women who work our games at Chase Center are critical in providing an incredible game-night experience for our fans, including of course, the popcorn vendors,” Warriors guard Stephen Curry said in the statement released by the team. “As players, we wanted to do something, along with our ownership and coaches, to help ease the pain during this time.”

Lacob had indicated earlier in the day that the Warriors would take care of the people hit hardest by the stoppage, and the owner made good on his word.

Chase Center employs more than 1,000 hourly workers, so no games or concerts at the arena means no paychecks. But the Warriors are making sure those vital people don’t have to worry during the pause in the NBA season.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said Thursday that the suspension could last at least 30 days.

Several NBA teams have pledged to take care of their arena employees. Even a few marquee players — Kevin Love, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zion Williamson and Blake Griffin — each donated $100,000 to help support workers in their respective arenas.

In such an uncertain time, it’s good to see organizations looking out for the people that are so important to their operations.

Coronavirus: Steph Curry’s foundation to help feed out-of-school students

Brian Witt | NBC SPORTS

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted sports figures and everyday people alike.

Steph Curry and the Warriors were sent home after the NBA season was indefinitely suspended Wednesday. On Friday, the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) joined many others in doing the same with its students.

There are over 18,000 students within the OUSD that rely on their school for at least two meals per day. With school no longer in session, there is a huge void to fill. Curry and his wife, Ayesha, announced Friday night that they are attempting to help do so.

The Currys, through their foundation, Eat.Learn.Play., are donating to the Alameda Food Bank to help serve the displaced students, and they’re inviting you to join them in the cause.

“We’re trying to do our part,” Steph said. “Hopefully you can join the fight with us and have each other’s backs as we go through this uncertain time in our community.”

Those interested in donating to the cause can do so at:

https://donate.accfb.org/supporting-families

San Francisco bans large crowds including Warriors games for 2 weeks because of coronavirus

Jason Owens | Yahoo Sports

San Francisco is banning gatherings of more than 1,000 people for at least two weeks because of the coronavirus, a decree that will impact Golden State Warriors home games.

Mayor London N. Breed made the announcement Wednesday morning.

“We know that this order is disruptive, but it is an important step to support public health,” Breed said in a statement. “We’re following the recommendations of public health officials to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community.”

“We know cancelling these events is a challenge for everyone, and we’ve been talking with venues and event organizers about the need to protect public health. Today I spoke with the Warriors to discuss the steps we’re taking to cancel large events, and they are in support of our efforts.”

The order will impact at least two Warriors home games. The Warriors are scheduled to host the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday and the Atlanta Hawks on March 25.

The Warriors later announced that they will play Thursday’s game without fans.

The game will be the first major American sporting event to be played without fans since the arrival of COVID-19 in the United States.

The ban doesn’t extend into baseball’s regular season with the San Francisco Giants scheduled to host their first home game on April 3. The Giants noted that they are canceling a March 24 exhibition game against the Oakland A’s.

“We will not play our upcoming March 24th exhibition game against the Oakland A’s at Oracle Park in San Francisco,” the statement reads. “We have no other large public gatherings scheduled at Oracle Park during this time period. We are in the process of working with Major League Baseball and the A’s to finalize alternative arrangements.”

The ban goes into effect immediately and can be reauthorized after the initial two-week time frame by the city’s health officer Dr. Grant Colfax, according to the statement.

The news arrives the same day the World Health Organization declared the spread of the coronavirus a pandemic.

“A pandemic just means that there are many cases of infectious diseases in multiple parts of the world and that it constitutes something that’s above the baseline rate that you’d expect,” infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, MD, told Yahoo Lifestyle. “It doesn’t say anything about severity.”

Colfax wrote in the San Francisco statement that the step to prohibit large crowds is an effort to improve the odds of reducing the spread of the virus.

“For the general public, reducing the opportunity for exposure to the virus is the top priority, and by cancelling events, we are improving the odds,” Colfax wrote. “We encourage all San Franciscans to cut back on the time you spend in groups and wash your hands consistently.”

Steph Curry to return to Warriors’ lineup Thursday vs. Raptors

Ali Thanawalla | NBC SPORTS

Welcome back, Steph Curry.

The two-time NBA MVP has been cleared to play and will return for the Warriors’ game against the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night unless something “catastrophic” happens, a league source told NBC Sports Bay Area’s Monte Poole on Wednesday.

Curry, who hasn’t played in a game since breaking his left hand Oct. 30 against the Suns, has been itching to get back on the court.

Before the Warriors would allow Curry to play in a game, they wanted him to go down to their G League affiliate in Santa Cruz and scrimmage with the team. So on Monday, the man with a $200 million NBA contract drove himself down the coast and practiced with the Sea Dubs. It was the final hurdle Curry needed to clear before playing in an NBA game.

Now, Curry’s return is upon us and it couldn’t come at a better time for the Warriors.

Without Curry and Klay Thompson, who has been ruled out for the season, Golden State has the worst record in the NBA at 14-48.

While Curry’s return won’t have any impact on the playoff race, the coaches and front office will get a chance to see him play with first-year Warriors Andrew Wiggins, Marquese Chriss, Eric Paschall and Jordan Poole. Their minutes together will give the organization an early look at what they can do next season.

For Dub Nation, there hasn’t been much to cheer about. But the return of Curry will give them a reason to roar for the final 20 games of the season.

Watch Klay Thompson’s hilarious Anta commercial featuring dog Rocco

Drew Shiller | NBC SPORTS

In late June 2017, Klay Thompson reportedly signed a new contract with Anta that could pay him up to $80 million over 10 years.

It appears the three-time NBA champion recently filmed a new commercial for the Chinese company. And yes, Klay’s English bulldog Rocco is a key component.

Enjoy:

Will this ad air exclusively in China? Or will it be coming to a TV screen near you in the United States?

No clue.

But we do know that it’s an awesome commercial and very on-brand.

Plain and simple, the world needs more Klay Thompsons.

Klay Thompson, Rocco soak up attention in dog-themed shoe promotion


Jessica Kleinschmidt | NBC SPORTS

There are very few things better than Klay Thompson. When you throw puppies and shoes into the mix, even fewer things reign supreme. But that’s exactly what we got Sunday. 

Thompson recently dropped his latest Rocco-themed signature shoe, the Anta KT5 Rocco. Rocco, his beloved bulldog, was shown off all across the shoe and the five-time All-Star made an appearance at the Warriors Shop at Chase Center to promote them.

The best part? Fans brought their dogs to celebrate, all while Rocco took in the attention.

“Spoiled-a– dog,” Thompson said.

And he was. Rocco was soaking up every ounce of it.

So were the other pups who appeared to be enjoying the event as well.

Rocco is one of the loves of Klay’s life, so putting his face, along with some dog bones on the kicks, wasn’t too much of a surprise. 

The two just recently starred in an ad to promote the shoe in China.

Definitely a spoiled dog. 

Thompson more than likely has become closer to his BFF Rocco while rehabbing a torn left ACL, which will have Klay out for the remainder of the season. 

PETTY PAUL? Steph Curry left off Chris Paul’s description of ultimate point guard

Brian Witt | NBC SPORTS

Thus far through their NBA careers, Steph Curry has gotten the better of Chris Paul.

In three head-to-head postseason matchups, Curry’s Warriors have won two playoff series to Paul’s one. Curry is a two-time NBA MVP, while Paul is still waiting for first. Curry owns three NBA championship rings. Paul has never made it to the NBA Finals.

So, yes, it would be easy to understand if Paul was bitter about the younger Curry’s success. He might not have wanted to pass the torch of predominant NBA point guard, but it happened nonetheless.

Paul was traded from the Houston Rockets — after they were eliminated by Curry and the Warriors — to the Oklahoma City Thunder last offseason, and he has done a tremendous job in leading OKC (36-22) to what is currently sixth place in the Western Conference. The Thunder have outperformed expectations thus far in what has been a feel-good season, and Paul arguably deserves the bulk of the credit for that.

Despite all those good feelings, however, it appears some of that bitterness still lingers. Paul was recently asked to build the ultimate point guard, taking attributes from different players, and he had one glaring omission that, frankly, seems intentional.

“I probably want [Derrick Rose]’s explosiveness,” Paul told Bleacher Report’s Taylor Rooks on the newest episode of “Take it There.” “And then you’ve got the different arms, so like one hand, probably Kyrie [Irving]’s finishes and all that. And then on the other hand, Shai [Gilgeous-Alexander] nice with the finishes.

“Steve Nash was a really good shooter,” he continued. “Russ [Westbrook] — a great rebounder. [LeBron James] is always good at passing and all that different type of stuff. But I know my basketball IQ and awareness … nobody watches more basketball than me.”

All right. Some fair selections. No arguments there. But wait … 

“Probably [Deron Williams] or Baron Davis’ build. Shooting also might be somebody like Gilbert Arenas.”

Hold up … What?!?

Curry is the greatest shooter of all time. One could make the case for Nash as well, so his inclusion on Paul’s list makes sense. But Arenas?

Come. On.

Currently in his 11th NBA season, Curry is a career 47.6-percent shooter from the field and 43.5-percent marksman from 3-point range. He will own every 3-point record by the time his career is over. Arenas, meanwhile, shot 42.1 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from beyond the arc over his 11-year NBA career, never once coming close to Curry’s career effective field goal percentage (.581) in any single season.

Seeing Curry disrespected by NBA greats of past and present is nothing new. It’s certainly possible that Paul simply forgot to include him, but based on history, that’s awfully tough to believe

Andre Iguodala reveals why he wasn’t ready for his time with Warriors to end and shares his favorite memory with them

Why Andre Iguodala wasn’t ready for his time with Warriors to end

Drew Shiller | NBC SPORTS

In the days and weeks leading up to Kevin Durant officially becoming a free agent last summer, the Warriors were preparing for his departure.

And as Golden State owner Joe Lacob told Greg Papa on Monday night: “We were hoping it was Brooklyn if [Durant] left. And the reason is that we knew that D’Angelo [Russell] was a possibility in a sign-and-trade. That was really our only possibility of getting something back with Kevin Durant leaving.”

Unfortunately for the Warriors, they were forced to trade Andre Iguodala (along with a top-four protected 2024 first-round pick) in order to acquire Russell. They could have passed on D-Lo and kept the 2015 NBA Finals MVP, but that would have limited their flexibility to build out the roster beyond the 2019-20 season.

Iguodala told Ethan Strauss of The Athletic on Monday night that he was not ready for his time in a Dubs uniform to come to an end.

“I feel like we had something to prove again,” he explained. “The way we played that Game 6 [against the Toronto Raptors in the NBA Finals]. We had the game, like, one or two possessions to push it to a Game 7.

“The way we played that night, Steph [Curry] was due for a big game. I had it going that night. We felt like we were going to run it back. We always felt like we had something to prove. And we felt like people didn’t respect us like they should.”

Iguodala has a point. Many people in the basketball world completely wrote the Warriors off last year when KD went down in Game 5 against the Houston Rockets. The Dubs responded by winning Game 6 on the road (Iguodala recorded 17 points, five steals and three assists) — which is Steve Kerr’s favorite game as the franchise’s coach.

And despite going to the NBA Finals five straight years and capturing three championships along the way, there are those that still question the Dubs’ legitimacy.

Yet with NBA TV ratings down this year and the prevailing narrative that it’s been a “boring” season so far, perhaps the Warriors were a good thing for the league in general.

“I think they’re kind of missing what we brought to the table the last five years,” Iguodala explained. “You know, people don’t know what they’re missing till it’s gone. They don’t appreciate it till it’s gone.

“But we always knew it was something special. As long as we were connected and the core was together we were in prime position to keep making runs at it.”

Andre Iguodala reveals favorite memory from memorable Warriors tenure

Josh Schrock | NBC SPORTS

The Warriors lost their third game in a row Monday, falling 113-101 to the Miami Heat at Chase Center.

But that wasn’t the story.

Andre Iguodala, who was a key cog in the Warriors’ run to five straight NBA Finals, made his return Monday as a member of the Heat. He was celebrated with a tribute video and a short speech from former teammate Klay Thompson.

The 2015 NBA Finals MVP scored two points in the Heat’s win, but they acquired him at the trade deadline from the Memphis Grizzlies for the impact they believe he will have in the postseason.

After the win over his old mates, Iguodala spoke with NBC Sports Bay Area’s Kerith Burke on the surreal feeling of the entire night.

“It’s pretty interesting,” Iguodala said after the win. “We actually ran some plays that I would run — [coach Erik Spoelstra] is pretty good at that. He got me a bucket running one of the plays that we would run normally. It’s interesting, but seeing the young guys, seeing how they are developing — Damion Lee shot the ball great tonight, seeing Jordan Poole progress and develop is good to see.”

During his six seasons with the Warriors, Iguodala was part of a number of great moments, but one sticks out more than the rest.

“I think Steph’s unanimous MVP,” Iguodala told Burke. “That might be it. Steph’s unanimous MVP was probably my favorite moment because people don’t know the hard work he puts in. I think they know but they don’t know. I think he was a little bit overlooked. Players across the league didn’t quite respect him, but when they saw it, it was beautiful seeing like, ‘Oh s–t, this guy is really, really good.’ So that was beautiful seeing him humble the entire world and being a part of that.”

Many thought Iguodala eventually would return to the Warriors, but he signed an extension with the Heat upon the trade. However, he is open to a reunion, either on the court or in a different role at some point in the future.

“Oh, that’s no doubt. That’s a given,” Iguodala said about wanting a relationship with the Warriors in the future. “I still talk to the video guys like every other day. I was talking to them this morning. I was talking to Draymond two days ago. Those relationships never end, so they continue until we’re no longer here.”

Iguodala’s tenacious defense and clutch shooting helped the Warriors win three titles in five seasons. Now, he’ll try to help bring a title back to South Beach.

GOLDEN REUNION? Iguodala on wanting Curry to sit out the rest of the season for “selfish reasons”: He’s going to come back on a wrath next year”

Andre Iguodala says Stephen Curry should sit out whole year, subtly hints at a possible Warriors reunion

Iguodala said he has ‘selfish’ reasons for wanting Curry to rest up

Brad Botkin | CBS SPORTS

The Warriors didn’t want to get rid of Andre Iguodala; they were forced to. When they made the sign-and-trade that sent Kevin Durant — who they were going to lose for nothing — to the Nets in exchange for D’Angelo Russell, the result was a hard cap of $138.9 million, meaning the Warriors could not exceed that total salary at any point during the 2019-20 season. 

Someone had to go. Iguodala, who was traded to Memphis, was the casualty. Only Iguodala didn’t want to play for Memphis, or even live there, and so a handshake deal was struck that he was only on the Grizzlies on paper. He doesn’t practice with them. He obviously doesn’t play with them. 

Memphis wants to trade Iguodala to a contender, but so far nobody has offered anything to their liking. Everyone’s hoping the Grizzlies will end up having to buy Iguodala out, at which point someone else can sign him without having to trade any assets. 

In the meantime, Iguodala is making $17.1 million to chill. Speaking on ESPN’s First Take on Friday, Iguodala said the rest he’s gotten so far this season has been a “blessing in disguise” that he believes has “added years” to his career. 

He’s staying in shape because chances are he’s going to end up playing somewhere this season (the Grizzlies are running out of time to avoid buying him out) are pretty good. He talked about the Lakers and Clippers, long rumored as two of the favorites to land Iguodala should Memphis end up buying him out. 

Iguodala also had something interesting to say about his former Warriors teammate Stephen Curry, who’s been out since the second week of the season with a broken hand but is reportedly targeting an early March return. When asked if Curry should return to play this season, here’s how Iguodala responded

“Selfish reasons, no,” Iguodala said. “I think he needs to get a real break, in terms of being able to relax. I think it’s good for him mentally to be able to step away, be able to get a nice breather. He’s going to come back on wrath next year.”

So, about next year … Is a Warriors-Iguodala reunion a possibility? Yes. We’ve known that for some time. Golden State will not be hard-capped any longer after this season and would be free to re-sign Iguodala if he would agree to a contract that fits inside their exceptions. But two words have to make you wonder if this reunion is actually more likely than just a possibility: Selfish reasons. 

Watch the video. Look at the smirk on Iguodala’s face when he says he has selfish reasons for wanting Steph Curry to sit out the rest of this season and come back fully rested next year.

What possible other selfish reasons would he have for wanting Curry to sit the rest of this season? If he ends up on a contender in a few weeks, it’s not like he’d have to worry about going against Curry in the playoffs. The Warriors have the worst record in the league. So what, then? 

Obviously nothing definitive can be extracted from an off-the-cuff comment on TV, and even if Iguodala is hoping to return to Golden State next season, a lot can happen between now and then. He could end up on a contender this season, play great, maybe win a title, and decide he wants to stay for another year. The Warriors could want to go in a different direction once their offseason takes shape — though it’s hard for me to imagine, given their salary-cap options, that they wouldn’t take Iguodala back in a heartbeat if the money worked for both sides. 

We’ll see how it shakes out. But for now, Iguodala thinks Curry should take a nice long rest this season and come back fresh. For selfish reasons.