Warriors Notes: Green, Kerr, Kuminga, Savings, Curry

The Warriors have lost their last four games, as well as five of their last six, and Draymond Green‘s suspension following an altercation with Minnesota’s Rudy Gobert on Tuesday makes matters more difficult, writes NBC Sports Bay Area’s Monte Poole. Green was suspended five games by the NBA for “escalating an on-court altercation and forcibly grabbing (Gobert) around the neck in an unsportsmanlike and dangerous manner.”

On top of being without Green, Stephen Curry is battling a minor knee injury and will miss his second straight game on Thursday night against the Thunder. To overcome the absences of Green and Curry, the Warriors are going to need everyone else to step up, including offseason acquisition Chris Paul, according to NBC Sports Bay Area’s Dalton Johnson. Paul started off the year with just six turnovers in his first eight games, including no turnovers in four straight games, but has 10 in his last four outings.

We’re not doing a great job of getting organized,” Green said. “I’ve got to do a better job of making sure we’re getting into some things. Chris got to do a better job. We both need to do a better job of getting us into things. When Steph’s got it going, he’s just moving and going. It’s on us to realize that and learn how to also use him when he’s got it going to get other guys looks as well.

Rookie Brandin Podziemski made the most of an extended opportunity without Green against Minnesota, finishing that game with 23 points, seven rebounds and five assists. He’s going to stay in the rotation moving forward, according to Johnson.

I look at myself like a spare tire,” Podziemski said. “Whenever something is wrong with the tire, I just go in and fix it. Whatever coach asks me, that is what I have to do.

Trayce Jackson-Davis and Dario Saric should also see their opportunities continue to grow. Saric started against the Wolves and recorded 21 points. Both his and Podziemski’s contributions allowed the Warriors to almost win that game and should keep them competitive moving forward. Johnson adds that Klay Thompson, Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody and Andrew Wiggins need to step up as well.

We have more on the Warriors:

  • Head coach Steve Kerr was fully supportive of the NBA’s decision to suspend Green when speaking to reporters on Thursday. According to ESPN’s Kendra Andrews (Twitter link), Green took it too far in taking action against Gobert and Kerr called the suspension “deserved.” “Draymond has to find a way to not cross the line – I’m not talking about an ejection or a technical – I’m talking about a physical act of violence. That’s inexcusable,” Kerr said (Twitter link via Andrews).
  • Third-year forward Jonathan Kuminga is starting in place of Green on Thursday, tweets The Athletic’s Anthony Slater. Kerr’s instructions for Kuminga were to “run the floor, rebound, dive, get to the line. I want him to shoot the 3.” Kuminga is averaging 11.5 points in his first 11 games this season. Thursday’s game will be his 29th career start and he averages 12.2 points as a starter in his career.
  • The Green suspension also has some financial implications for the Warriors. According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link), Green will forfeit $769,705 in salary, which will save the Warriors $2,597,762. The Warriors receive a tax variance credit which is worth 50% of Green’s lost salary and that variance is applied to team salary that counts toward the tax, Marks explains.
  • Curry remains one of the league’s top players, but he’s thinking about his post-playing career, according to NBC Sports Bay Area’s Dalton Johnson. Curry “absolutely” wants to be an NBA owner in the future. “Understanding the business and how the NBA is run, what all goes into this huge behemoth of an operation, it fascinates you to understand, where’s the future headed?” Curry said. “The league has changed so much in the 15 years I’ve been in and hopefully I’ll be still playing for a good while.
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