July 23, 2013

Harrison Barnes willing to be sixth man

The Golden State Warriors made themselves a formidable contender in the Western Conference with the acquisition of forward Andre Iguodala, the slasher and wing defender they visibly needed.

At this week's Team USA mini-camp in Las Vegas, second-year forward Harrison Barnes expressed to Sporting News his willingness to play whatever role is required of him, particularly since Iguodala's presence would likely make him the starting forward in a front court with David Lee and Andrew Bogut. First, this speaks to the communal, team focus and atmosphere Mark Jackson has cultivated in Golden State. Barnes' progressively notable rookie season ended with a significant role in playing the small-ball, "stretch 4" slot in light of David Lee's torn right hip flexor, which gave the Spurs trouble in the conference semifinal round. His selflessness (and Iguodala's versatility) gives Mark Jackson the luxury of using smaller, faster line ups with Iguodala or Barnes at the 4, or bigger line ups with a presumably healthy Lee and Bogut. Expect next year's ticket in Golden State to get even hotter.

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