Andre Iguodala adjusting to life as a Warrior
OAKLAND — Golden State Warriors training camp doesn’t start until September 28, but the Warriors are back in the Bay Area getting an early start.
Andre Iguodala, the 6-foot-6 swingman acquired over the summer from Denver, is getting a feel for his new teammates and for life in the Bay.
After a team workout Wednesday, he told SFBay he’s not worried the transition phase especially since he’s surrounded by knockdown shooters like Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson:
“I think the good thing is that I won’t have to make too many adjustments. I think if anything just be more aggressive … just continue to attack.”
Since arriving in the first week of September, Iguodala said it’s been the earliest and most organized offseason workout schedule of any team he’s been on.
Impressed early on by the competitive nature of the Warriors, he already expects that he’ll be pushed to new limits by the team.
Right now, Iguodala said, he’s more interested in figuring out how the other guys play and what they like to do on the court, and that he will assert himself more offensively once training camp starts:
“I’ve been really trying to get a good feel for where guys like to shoot, how our bigs cut, who likes to pop, how guys like to go into the post.”
Getting their rhythm back after the offseason is important — and the Warriors are trying to get it early. Iguodala said everyone on the team is invested in building team unity and creating something truly great for the upcoming season.
Trying not to sound disrespectful to past teammates, Iguodala said that though he’s played with some great guys, meshing personalities seems to happen a little easier with the Warriors.
Top to bottom, Iguodala said, Golden State feels like the best fit he’s had:
“The good thing is that we have a bunch of good character guys. The number one main thing for us is winning. We put winning as a team over any individual goals, those are the type of things that don’t show up on the stat sheet that can help our team win.”
All around, the Warriors have high expectations for themselves in the 2013-2014 NBA season. Iguodala said he has goals higher than 50 wins, though he would prefer the team to fly under the radar while keeping the bar set high:
“I think we have a coaching staff who has expressed that early, we have high expectations, we expect to win. Everything we do we have to have a winning mentality with it.”
Iguodala said that he doesn’t think he’s received the type of credit he deserves in the past for the contributions he’s made on previous teams, and looks forward to taking defensive pressure off Thompson:
“I’m really excited for Klay. There’s going to be a lot of pressure taken off him with having to defend certain guys on certain nights and you can switch up the assignment defensively and I’ll take the pressure off him and let him do more work offensively instead of exerting so much energy on the defensive end.”
Off the court, Iguodala has been settling into his new life in the Bay Area, finding a new place, building a relationship off the court with coach Mark Jackson, and even taking his son to a 49ers game.
He said the transition has been smooth and the fans here have been great, though he’s been getting some flack for being a diehard Niner fan:
“They’re really passionate about their sports. Especially the Oakland Raiders. They kind of got on me because I’m a 49ers fan, so I get that on twitter a lot. … I’m just enjoying the environment, so far the area’s been great.”
One thing he can’t seem to get away from is “Iggy,” the nickname that follows him wherever he goes. Iguodala isn’t crazy about it, and said very few get away with calling him that these days:
“I never liked that, since I was a kid I’ve been called that. But my teammates can call me that, I feel like they kinda know me and they can get away with it but, I’m not a big fan.”