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News » Golden State Warriors Getting Inside 2009-12-03

Golden State Warriors Getting Inside 2009-12-03

Golden State Warriors Getting Inside 2009-12-03As Don Nelson prepares to return as Warriors coach, you have to ask: Was the club better off with Keith Smart running the show?

Let's study the numbers.

The Warriors have been severely short-handed since the Stephen Jackson trade to Charlotte on Nov. 17, which makes that a nice starting point to take a survey.

Nelson coached the first three games after the deal -- a surprisingly competitive loss at Cleveland, three quality quarters before tiring out the next night at Boston, and undoubtedly the team's most impressive win of the season to that point, a 14-point thumping of Portland at home.

When the rejuvenated squad flew to Dallas the next day, Nelson was not on board. He stayed home to deal with a bout of pneumonia.

Led by Smart, the Warriors trumped the Portland win by shocking the Mavericks in Dallas. Then, similar to the loss at Boston under Nelson, they hung with the Spurs for longer than most expected the next night before falling flat late.

That's been followed by two blowout losses to Western powers -- the Lakers at home and the Nuggets on the second night of a rough back-to-back -- that sandwiched another impressive effort in a rather comfortable home win over the Pacers.

So, what's the conclusion?

Both men have done wonderfully under conditions about as bad as you'll find in the NBA. Warriors fans can be comforted that the eventual handoff from Nelson to Smart will be smooth.

Will that prevent the same 12-year playoff drought that immediately followed Nelson leaving the club in his first tour with the Warriors? Only time will tell.

NUGGETS 135, WARRIORS 107: The Warriors checked into their downtown hotel in Denver at just before 4 a.m. Tuesday, just as they'd expected. And they checked out of their game against the Nuggets at about 8:30 p.m. -- again, pretty much as expected. Enduring what many consider the toughest back-to-back in the NBA -- a West Coast game followed by an early morning flight into Denver for a mile-high game that night -- the Warriors put little energy into defense and got blown out by the talented Nuggets. If there was a silver lining to the game, it was that Golden State finished with as many healthy bodies as had started the game (eight). It isn't often the Warriors have been able to say that this season.

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: December 3, 2009


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