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News » Trail Blazers-Warriors Preview 2009-11-20

Trail Blazers-Warriors Preview 2009-11-20

Trail Blazers-Warriors Preview 2009-11-20The Golden State Warriors' injury report has nearly as many names as their active roster these days, but the team's biggest absence isn't hurt at all.

The Warriors play their first game at home Friday night since dealing Stephen Jackson, although they'll be without one of the players acquired in the trade when they face the surging Portland Trail Blazers.

Golden State (3-8) departed on its five-game road trip with a 2-4 record and a disgruntled Jackson, who had been trying to force a trade since August after clashing with coach Don Nelson.

The Warriors granted his wish Monday, dealing him to Charlotte along with Acie Law for guard Raja Bell and forward Vladimir Radmanovic.

"We can get back to playing basketball," general manager Larry Riley said of his team, which went into Tuesday's game in Cleveland with seven healthy players.

Golden State lost that contest 114-108 in Radmanovic's debut, and it got an eighth player the next night in Boston when Bell - who has a partially torn ligament in his left wrist - offered to play and scored 11 points in a 109-95 loss.

"It's hard to sit there and watch when you know a team is as undermanned as we are," Bell said. "I was hoping to get out there and (the injury) would be OK. Part of me in the back of my mind had a lot of high hopes for it."

Bell played 23 minutes, but that was his last action for a while. He decided to have surgery on the wrist Thursday and could be lost for the season, likely joining Kelenna Azubuike, who is slated for surgery to repair a torn patella tendon.

Golden State is in trouble up front as well, with Ronny Turiaf, Brandan Wright and Andris Biedrins out. The backcourt injuries, though, should spell more time for rookie Stephen Curry, who averaged 13.7 points on 55.2 percent shooting in the last three games.

The short-handed Warriors would seem to be in trouble against Portland (9-4), winner of seven of eight, but they have dominated the Trail Blazers of late in Oakland. Golden State won the last eight home meetings by an average of 12.0 points.

While Portland has been hot lately - its only loss since Nov. 3 came in overtime at Atlanta - it hasn't exactly been beating up on tough competition. The Hawks are the only team with a winning record the Blazers faced in the last eight games.

Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge scored 20 points apiece against Detroit on Wednesday and Portland led by 20 after three quarters, but was outscored by 14 in the fourth before escaping with an 87-81 win.

"We just blew that lead," Roy said. "We tried to get our starters back in there late and we did the best we could to get back in the flow of the game. We held them off."

Roy has averaged 26.0 points in four career games at Oracle Arena.

Portland doesn't have the volume of injuries Golden State does, but it suffered a key loss late last week. Reserve Travis Outlaw, who averaged 16.5 points in his last eight games against the Warriors, had foot surgery Wednesday and will miss three to five months.

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Added: November 20, 2009


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