Saturday, January 03, 2009

The Warriors Need Their Own Todd McLellan

Back to back losses to the Oklahoma City NBA Franchise (which shall not be named) and the Minny T-Wolves leave me struggling to even put together complete sentences. The season is getting worse and worse. It is currently in the process of spiraling into a pit of darkness, frustration, and despair.

I was at the Raptor game at Oracle last Monday to view a rare win. The Dubs tried their damnedest to give the game away, but luckily Rocky Bellinelli, Captain Jack, and CJ Watson made a few shots.

That's the last fond memory I have of them. They come and go quickly these days. Even the rare wins don't feel as good as they used to. These are not wins that lend us confidence or hope. They are simply a two hour break from the ever-storming raincloud that has been following us Warrior fans around since the day Baron left.

Whenever I get down about the Warriors (which is approximately every 2 to 4 hours), I shift my thoughts onto my other teams.

I dream of the Singletary-led 49ers next year giving Frank Gore a proper 35 touches per game. I think of the Giants winning games behind a sick rotation in a weak division. But if I really want to smile, I glance into my closet.

Next to my white Patrick Willis and red Garrison Hearst jerseys hangs my home teal jersey of Evgeni Nabokov.

I won't turn this into an article about the Sharks, because we all know the story. They're dominant, they're fun to watch, and they do things right. They are the Bay Area's lone model franchise.

They have an ownership group and a front office on the same page. They draft character guys who fit. They trade draft picks only to get better. They lock up young players. They operate seamlessly as one unit; as one franchise.

This season, the difference-maker has been new coach Todd McLellan. Granted, puck-moving blueliners Dan Boyle and Rob Blake have been extremely important, but it's the Saskatchewan-born former Red Wings assistant has been the simultaneous glue and rocket fuel the Sharks have needed. His system fits his players and his GM knows it.

I'm taking a deep breath and slowly sighing right now...

If only the Warriors had that. I swear they did two years ago... Didn't they??

The splintered infighting, powerplaying, and disturbing behavior from Chris Cohan on down has been well-documented. As a result of this bizarre Al Davis-like leadership, we can safely assume that this roster is unfixable at this juncture.

What can we fix then?

First, Don Nelson must be fired or reassigned. Immediately.

If Mike Shanahan can get fired after 14 years in Denver, Dennis Savard can be fired 4 games into the NHL season by the Chicago Blackhawks, and six NBA coaches have been fired less than halfway into this season, Don Nelson should be standing on the breadline yesterday.

Of course, none of us get it. We don't get why he got a lucrative extension. We don't get why Nellie hates Anthony Randolph. We don't understand why our team is not competing on the floor. We don't get any of it.

The only hope for this team in the next two years is to find a coach that fits our roster and our strengths. Unfortunately our strengths are streaky shooting, sub-par guard skills, and a lack of defense, but dammit, there must be something we can do with these guys.

We need a Todd McLellan/Doug Wilson combo to save the Warriors. Hell, I'd take Ron Wilson at this point.

When Monta returns to his old form (crossing my fingers and making the sign of the cross), we will have a combo guard pair to end all combo guard pairs. Jamal Crawford and Monta are very similar players, but that will at least give us some sort of intriguing possibilities on offense, won't it? Defensive liabilities will abound, but what else is new?

What we're looking at is a drive and kick offense that relies heavily on the ability of Stephen Jackson, Rocky Bellinelli, and Corey Bleepin' Maggette to hit jump shots after Monta and Crawford penetrate the lane. I really cannot think of any other options. Can you?

What's really scary about that, is that's basically what they Warriors look like now, minus Malpractice Maggette and Moped Monta.

Rick Carslisle and Jeff Van Gundy are looking pretty good right now...

I just threw up in my mouth a little bit.

Not even Phil Jackson channeling the spirits of Red Auerbach and Vince Lombardi could save this team from losing...

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