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News » Nelson to miss 5-game road trip

Nelson to miss 5-game road trip

Nelson to miss 5-game road trip Don Nelson will coach his last game for at least 11 days tonight, and he'll do without the services of the team's third-best scorer, guard Anthony Morrow , the Warriors announced Friday.

Nelson will not travel with the team on its five-game road trip, which begins Monday at Oklahoma City, because of lingering effects from a bout with pneumonia. He felt dizzy after Thursday's 111-109 loss to Houston - his first game back after being diagnosed Nov. 23 - and felt hot and was sweating during a meeting with general manager Larry Riley on Friday morning.

After meeting with doctors, the training staff and management, Nelson heeded advice that he shouldn't make the road trip and again will turn over the reins to assistant Keith Smart . The swing through Oklahoma City, New Jersey, Chicago, Detroit and Philadelphia includes four time changes and four flights that land later than 11:54 p.m. over an eight-day span.

"To me, it's just a formula for disaster," Riley said. "We can't have a setback. That's our concern right now."

The Warriors will get Morrow back in Oklahoma City on Monday after he attends the funeral of a family member in North Carolina. When they get Nelson back for good is anyone's guess, though Riley said he hopes it's sooner rather than later.

"I know there will be a lot of speculation about this, but I'm going to give it to you straight," said Riley, addressing rumors that Nelson might not complete his contract through the 2010-11 season. "This is about his health, and this is about the fact that this is a difficult trip.

"I want him back, and there's no question about that."

The 69-year-old coach has stopped medication but hasn't regained his strength or energy. He'll start walking on a treadmill while the team is traveling.

The Warriors expect Nelson to recover by mid-December, setting up a possible return for home games against San Antonio on Dec. 16 and Washington on Dec. 18. Nelson has been told it could take several months to feel healthy, which puts into question the Memphis-New Orleans trip after Christmas and the Portland-Denver-Minnesota roadie after New Year's.

"I have to listen to the people who are smarter than me," Nelson said. "It's easy for the team, but it's not easy for me not to be there. There shouldn't be any adjusting."

The team went 2-3 under Smart from Nov. 24 through Tuesday and played some of its most inspired ball of the season. That hasn't stopped the players from rallying around Nelson.

"We're going to try to make this a great trip, not for us, but for him," guard Monta Ellis said. "Pneumonia is something serious."

Briefly: The Warriors have not decided whether Ronny Turiaf knee or Andris Biedrins groin/abdomen will make the five-game road trip.

Warriors tonight Magic 15-4 vs. 6-127:30 p.m.Oracle ArenaCSNBA/680Orlando has won 13 of the past 19 meetings.

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Added: December 5, 2009


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