For a few weeks, or at least a few games, Monta Ellis hasn’t played at an All-Star level. On the day the All-Star reserves were named, Ellis wasn’t on the list. He then proceeded to play like one in the Warriors 100-94 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.
In the 4th quarter of a game Golden State desperately needed to win, Ellis was at his best, including a 20-foot jumper to give the Warriors a 96-92 lead with 17 seconds left. From there, he and Stephen Curry calmly hit four free throws to secure a hard fought home win and give G’State there 21st win of the season.
Ellis claims he isn’t too disappointed with his exclusion from the All-Star team, and with players like Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge and Steve Nash by his side, he certainly is in good company. The league’s 6th leading score says he’s more concerned with trying to get the Warriors into the playoffs. And while that’s a worthy goal, that’s not going to happen either.
No, the important thing is to just win. Win as many games as possible, and turn this organization from a culture of losing into one of winning. That doesn’t happen overnight. That happens when you win and win consistently. The Warriors sit at 21-27 right now, six games under .500. To finish the year at .500 is also probably a little bit of a reach, but it’s a good goal. Even if they don’t reach it, the Warriors are certain to better last year’s win total by a substantial amount.
In 2010, the Warriors finished 26-56. Golden State could surpass that total by the end of the month. Yes, a losing record for the season is still probably, but improvement is most definite. And that begins with Ellis, All-Star or not. This is his team. If the Warriors are ever going to make that switch, it will be with him leading the way.
And if the Warriors start winning more games than they lose, being named to the All-Star team will be an afterthought.
About the Author
Written by Scott Johnston
Scott Johnston is a longtime Sports TV Producer/Writer from Los Angeles who now lives just outside of Boston. After a long career at KCAL-TV in L.A., where Scott covered such things as Kirk Gibson’s HR, Hank Gathers death, and Magic Johnson’s retirement, NBA ll-Star Game MVP performance and subsequent return to the NBA. His favorite team is the Oakland A’s and whomever happens to be playing the Yankees, USC or the Cowboys on that particular day. Scott left his staff position at KCAL and formed his own small production company in 1996 while continuing to freelance there and at other stations, including WTTG in DC for two years. His company, ProTVSports, started out covering one team during Spring Training in 1997 but now covers six of the Cactus League teams. He also covers tennis and golf events during the year and has had the privilege of covering 5 NBA Finals, including two of the last three. Scott loves all sports, but considers baseball to be his favorite. He loves politcs, reading, movies and his wife and two daughters—not in that order!