July 19, 2024

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Brandin Podziemski, Trace Jackson-Davis gain late-game experience against Kings – NBC Sports Bay Area & California

Brandin Podziemski, Trace Jackson-Davis gain late-game experience against Kings – NBC Sports Bay Area & California

SAN FRANCISCO — In the big picture, the Warriors’ win over the Sacramento Kings in the California Classic final on Wednesday won’t matter much to the team, except for the fact that it gave them the chance to hoist the inaugural Mitch Richmond Trophy.

But it was important enough that Golden State coach Anthony Vereen brought summer league veterans Brandin Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis onto the court in the final minutes of the Warriors’ 91-90 win at Chase Center.

On the other hand, Vereen needed both to help stem the tide after the Kings cut a 16-point fourth-quarter deficit to 88-84 with two minutes left.

On the other hand, it gave Podziemski and Jackson Davis a chance to hone their closing skills, something Vereen believes will be crucial to both players’ futures and the Warriors’ future as a whole.

“For our team going forward, it’s really important for those guys to get those reps at the end of the game to see how they feel, try to impact the win, try to make the winning plays,” said Vereen, who praised both players for their improved fitness. “It’s kind of hard to leave and get back in the team and integrate into it, but I think they’ve done a really good job of that.”

“Ultimately, we got the win and they were able to get some valuable reps at the end of the game.”

This was the first time Podziemski and Jackson Davis had played in the California Classic this season. Before arriving on their waterfront court for Wednesday’s game, the two men were playing for Team USA in Las Vegas, where they helped prepare the U.S. men’s basketball team for the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris.

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For Podziemski, the effort he put into a game that had little consequence is no surprise. Since joining the Warriors as the 19th pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, the youngster has been a nonstop ball of anger every time he steps on the court.

“I love playing in games like this,” Podziemski said after scoring 15 points and going with four assists against the Kings. “A lot of guys are trying to get contracts, so they’re playing their best. That’s all you can ask for from a competitive standpoint. It was good to play against these guys.”

“Being on the pitch when the game matters the most is what you want. It doesn’t really matter if you come off the bench or start the game or whatever. Being on the pitch and being a leader and being trusted with the ball in your hands when it’s late in the game is what I want.”

Podziemski certainly did all that and then some against the Kings, continuing a trend he started during his rookie season.

“These are some of the things we told him that he would be judged on,” Vereen said. “How do you inspire and motivate people to play with you? We know you’re going to play hard, we know you’re going to try to play the right way, but how do you engage people and make them want to play with you?”

Jackson Davis, who had 11 points and six rebounds, is trying to become a more vocal leader, especially on the defensive end.

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“I’m happy to be back here,” said Jackson Davis, who missed most of last season’s Summer League with an injury. “We have a great group, we have a lot of firepower up front. When we move the ball, we’re hard to stop. That’s what we saw in the first half. In the second half, we stopped a little bit and let them come back, but we held on to the ball at the end and got the win.” [win]”.”

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