- Associated Press - Friday, March 13, 2015

DENVER (AP) - For an evening, the Splash Brothers will be the Bench Brothers.

Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson will have plenty of company in their sideline seats, too, as fellow Golden State players Andre Iguodala and Andrew Bogut join them for a night of rooting instead of shooting against the Denver Nuggets on Friday.

“They need a rest,” coach Steve Kerr explained after the morning practice.

In addition, the Warriors also will be without center Marreese Speights, who was suspended for one game by the NBA for pleading no contest to reckless driving, the league announced.

That’s 67 percent of the team’s offense this season on the bench against a Nuggets squad which has gone 4-2 since interim coach Melvin Hunt took over after the firing of Brian Shaw.

The lineup for the Western Conference-leading Warriors will look like this: Harrison Barnes, Draymond Green, David Lee, Justin Holiday and Shaun Livingston.

Kerr understands there will be disappointed fans showing up at Pepsi Center expecting to see the Splash Brothers, a nickname given to Thompson and Curry. But with the Warriors playing the New York Knicks at home Saturday, Kerr would rather rest his top players now.

“Our home fans pay good money to see us play,” Kerr said. “I’d much rather we did this on the road, even though I know there are people here in Denver probably coming to see Steph and Klay play, in particular.

“Unfortunately, we can’t base our own team’s welfare on that. We can at least sway it in the side of our own fans. So those guys will all be active and playing tomorrow night.”

San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich famously rested Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green by sending them home before a game at Miami in November 2012. But that was early in the season. The Spurs drew a $250,000 fine from the league for the maneuver.

More than anything, Kerr’s trying to keep his team fresh with the grind of the postseason just around the corner.

However, there was one small wrinkle to his plan that Kerr didn’t count on - the suspension of Speights. Kerr said he found out Friday morning.

“Bad timing. We had no idea that was coming,” Kerr said. “We might have timed it differently, but I’m not going to give a guy the night off and backtrack.”

The Warriors thought about bringing in center Ognjen Kuzmic from Santa Cruz of the NBA Developmental League. But he banged his shoulder the day before, Kerr said.

“Everything is happening at once,” Kerr said. “But the flip side of that is we’ve got great depth. We get to play some guys that haven’t been in rhythm. We get to see some different combinations. I have every reason to think we’ll come out and give ourselves a chance to win.”

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide