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News » Golden State Warriors Roster Report 2008-06-18

Golden State Warriors Roster Report 2008-06-18

Golden State Warriors Roster Report 2008-06-18
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: You could argue Monta Ellis posted better overall numbers and it would be fair to say the Warriors would have made the playoffs if Stephen Jackson hadn't missed the first seven games of the season, but Baron Davis was the no-doubt-about-it team MVP. He ranked among the league leaders in scoring (21.8) and assists (7.6), but nobody league-wide was better in one surprising category -- games played. After having been dubbed fragile following consecutive seasons in which he missed 34, 28 and 19 games, Davis was the only Warrior to play in all 82 this season.

MOST DISAPPOINTING PLAYER: When the Warriors dealt Jason Richardson for a draft pick last June, they knew they'd need Mickael Pietrus to fill some big shoes and have a big season. He appeared ready for it, having improved from 9.3 points and 3.1 assists a game in 2005-06 to 11.1 points and 4.5 rebounds last year. Playing for a new contract in 2008-09 only added to his potential. But the Frenchman, who saw his agent get rejected time and again in sign-and-trade offers to get out of Golden State, didn't have his head on straight for four months, then suffered a groin injury just when he was playing his best basketball in March. In the end, the Warriors wish he'd played elsewhere.

BIGGEST NEEDS: In order to build upon the momentum of a 48-win season, the Warriors must re-sign young free agents Monta Ellis and Andris Biedrins. Both are restricted free agents. Presuming that is done, they must then decide which is their greatest need -- another little guy to take the minutes burden off Baron Davis, Ellis and Stephen Jackson, or a quality big man to complement Biedrins and Brandan Wright -- and then determine whether their best way to get this player is through the draft, trade or using Davis in a sign-and-trade.

FREE-AGENT FOCUS: The Warriors enter the offseason with a remarkable 10 free agents: Ellis, Biedrins, Mickael Pietrus, Matt Barnes, Patrick O'Bryant, Kosta Perovic, Austin Croshere, Troy Hudson, Kelenna Azubuike and C.J. Watson. An 11th player, Davis, can opt out of the final year of his contract before June 30. The Warriors will be at least $12 million under the salary cap and $24 million under the luxury-tax threshold, figures that would vault to close to $30 million and $42 million if Davis were to opt out of his $17.8 million guarantee.


--Stephen Jackson, whose season began on a seven-game suspension because of a gun-shooting incident while a member of the Pacers, was selected as the Angela & Christopher Cohan Community Service Award winner. Among the veteran's numerous charitable acts in 2007-08 were: flying 10 winners of the Stephen Jackson Essay Contest from Port Arthur, Texas, to Oakland to attend a game and meet the team; donating $500 per point scored one game (he scored 15, totaling $7,500, which he doubled to $15,000) to the Show Me Campaign; and creating the Jack 1 Foundation to assist underprivileged families.

--Patrick O'Bryant likely has played the last game of his undistinguished Warriors career. The former first-round pick saw action in just 40 games over his two-year career as a Warrior, contributing just 66 points and 50 rebounds. The Warriors did not offer the 7-footer an extension past his two-year, rookie-contract guarantee.

--Kelenna Azubuike accepted a personal invitation to attend "The Summit of a Lifetime" in Tanzania from June 2-6. The trip ended at a "President's Dinner," where the two-year Golden State swingman presented Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete a orange-colored, No. 7 Warriors jersey.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: June 18, 2008


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