Andrew Bogut goes through full practice with Warriors for second straight day

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As we broke down in our season preview, how this year turns out for the Warriors is perhaps more dependent on the health of the team’s stars than anything else. Now technically, that could be said about every team in the league — except with the history of injuries suffered by Stephen Curry and Andrew Bogut, they have more to prove there than stars with a history of durability.

So it is good news then, that Bogut has now gone through full practices with the team in consecutive days. And head coach Mark Jackson is now feeling better about the chance of having his new big man in the starting lineup for the season opener in Phoenix on Wednesday.

“He responded well. Now it’s about getting treatment. We’ll play (Wednesday) by ear,” Jackson said. “He did exactly what we needed him to do.

“In an ideal world, I’d love to know (if he was going to play) right now, but this is what we’re dealing with. We’re going to be very cautious with when he steps on the floor. We’re going to be smart with this thing, understanding that we need him for the long haul – not just (Wednesday) night.”

Also in the same report from Rusty Simmons at the San Francisco Chronicle was a tidbit about Bogut feeling no pain and suffering no setbacks after that first full practice on Monday.

As Bogut and Curry go, so will the Warriors go. It will help if they’re both in place beginning opening night, and it appears there’s at least a chance we may see Bogut on the floor in Phoenix on Wednesday to face the Suns.

PBT Extra: Disciplined Celtics highlight bad habits of Milwaukee Bucks

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Giannis Antetokounmpo has been every bit the top five NBA player in the postseason — 32.5 points per game on 63.2 percent shooting, plus with 11 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game.

Yet the Bucks are down 0-2 to Boston.

The Celtics have had a strong series from Al Horford and Terry Rozier, but the real difference is in the discipline this team has shown all season — Boston knows who it is. Clearly, Milwaukee does not. They turn the ball over too much and make too many mistakes.

I get into all of that in this PBT Extra, and I wonder if that’s something the Bucks can really turn around mid-playoffs.

Ettore Messina to coach Spurs in Game 3 following death of Gregg Popovich’s wife

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Spurs coach Gregg Popovich’s wife, Erin, died yesterday.

That sad news was felt throughout the NBA, and it obviously affects San Antonio most closely. That includes for tonight’s Game 3 against the Warriors.

Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News:

Ettore Messina was a longtime head coach in Europe. The Spurs lead assistant also took over for a few regular-season games Popovich missed. So, making – rather than advising – coaching decisions won’t be a brand new challenge to Messina.

But down 2-0 to defending-champion Golden State is a tough place to make an NBA playoff debut.

On the bright side, there will be no pressure. Not only has San Antonio been outclassed the first two games of the series, focus is rightly on the Popovich family. A win would be a pleasant surprise and help Messina – who’s up for the Hornets job – in his pursuit of a head-coaching position. A loss would be quickly forgotten with more important matters at hand.

To that end, hopefully the time away allows Popovich the space he needs to grieve. That matters far more than a basketball game.

Report: Knicks to interview Kenny Smith for head-coaching job

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The Knicks are casting a wide net in their coaching search.

It’ll apparently include a familiar, though surprising, name.

ESPN:

TNT analyst Kenny Smith will interview for the New York Knicks’ head-coaching job on Friday, a source told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith.

A quality organization, the Rockets, interviewed Smith (in 2016, before hiring Mike D’Antoni). So, this isn’t proof of the Knicks’ oddball thinking. (There are plenty of better examples, if you wish).

Steve Kerr opened the door for former players to go straight from TV to being an NBA head coach without having any coaching experience. He’s been a smash hit with the Warriors.

But Kerr was also the Suns’ general manager before Golden State hired him. Smith has no front-office experience.

So, it’s tough to judge Smith, whose role on television is more to entertain than inform (though he does both). He’ll have to really wow in his interview to get the job.

But at least he has that opportunity.

Pacers coach Nate McMillan slips and falls while arguing call (video)

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Nate McMillan slipped up in his handling of Victor Oladipo‘s early fouls during the Pacers’ Game 2 loss to the Cavaliers last night.

Then, the Indiana coach literally slipped while arguing that LeBron James should have been called for offensively fouling Lance Stephenson.