OAKLAND — With a defensive arsenal up to his elbows and offensive weapons to spare, Mark Jackson and the Warriors are well-armed and ready for the regular season.
But this is preseason, and Jackson is determined to keep his team healthy. So don’t expect to see the big guns play big minutes until Oct. 30 at Oracle Arena.
Jackson told SFBay he plans to keep guys like David Lee, Andrew Bogut, Andre Iguodala, and Jermaine O’Neal to 24 minutes or less during the preseason games.
And as for Curry, Jackson insinuated his star guard might not see any minutes and would be red-shirting:
“I will tell you that Steph Curry will have the red jersey on, like in football.”
The Warriors head coach says he has a plan for Saturday’s exhibition game against the Lakers and for the rest of preseason. He knows who he will play, but he’s keeping that information to himself for now:
“I know who I’m going to start tomorrow. … but don’t read anything into it whatever way I go.”
Though Jackson refused to say who would be starting, he did say that his decision has nothing to do with how guys have done in training camp. He said the most important thing was the health of the team.
Jackson said he has probably changed his mind five different times deciding the starting lineup for the Warriors preseason opener in Ontario, Calif. Saturday night.
One thing important to Jackson is that the young players and training camp invitees get a chance to showcase their talents:
“Its going to be a great opportunity for them to make a statement and show that they’re ready. It’ll be a lot of fun for them.”
One of the young guys looking to stand out is Draymond Green, who shined in Summer League and has dramatically changed his body since last season in his continuing effort to get better.
Green told SFBay both he and the team are getting better because they are going so hard at each other every day in practice. But Green is eager to start going against other teams:
“Its time to see another team. If we can go at each other like this on a daily basis, when we see a different team, it’s gonna make it that much easier for us.”
The Warriors will return to the Bay Area to face the Sacramento Kings at Oracle on Tuesday.