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OAKLAND – Effectively earlier than he even stepped on the courtroom, Andrew Bogut obtained the loudest ovation of the night time.

The explanation: the Warriors performed a tribute video capturing Bogut’s earlier four-year cease (2012-2016) that coincided with the crew’s first NBA title in 40 years (2015) and a record-setting regular-season (2015-16).

It solely appeared becoming the Warriors would play that earlier than their 112-89 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday at Oracle Area. It marked Bogut’s first residence sport because the Warriors signed him to a veteran’s minimal deal on March 6. It additionally defined why the Warriors imagine he can be instrumental for a one other championship push.

“I’m completely happy the followers gave him that due,” Klay Thompson mentioned. “He was an enormous a part of why he wont hat first championship. He was an anchor within the center.”

Bogut isn’t taking part in precisely the identical function as he as soon as did with the Warriors.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr likened Bogut to an “insurance coverage coverage function” to account for DeMarcus Cousins’ ongoing progress from his surgically repaired left Achilles tendon in addition to combined progress with fourth-year ahead Kevon Looney and second-year ahead Jordan Bell. So with Bogut posting 4 factors on 1-of-Eight capturing and 7 rebounds in 9 minutes, he mused that is the “first press convention for a man who performed rubbish time on the finish of the sport.”

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That didn’t cease Warriors followers and teammates, nonetheless, from feeling nostalgic.

“Followers acknowledged in lots of ways in which Andrew represented the sift within the Warriors group,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr mentioned.

Bogut represented a number of pivot factors.

Shortly after the Warriors acquired him from Milwaukee for star level guard Monta Ellis earlier than the 2012 commerce deadline, Warriors followers booed majority proprietor Joe Lacob at Chris Mullin’s retirement ceremony. Bogut quickly turned a fan favourite for bolstering the crew’s protection each underneath Mark Jackson (2012-2014) and Kerr (2014-16). The Warriors then traded Bogut to Dallas within the 2016 offseason to carve up cap house for Kevin Durant’s free company. Earlier this month, the Warriors signed the 34-year-old Bogut for the final month of the common season and their presumed playoff push.

“He’s welcomed again with open arms,” Curry mentioned. “He was a part of quite a lot of Warriors historical past profitable that first championship and what he meant from the brand new regime with the time they booed Joe. Its good to get again in entrance of Dub nation and Warriors fan at residence. It’s nicely deserved.”

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So when Bogut entered the sport with 1:46 left within the first quarter, it was hardly shocking Warriors followers gave Bogut yet one more standing ovation. Bogut has obtained loads of these moments this week within the Bay Space, too.

“It’s humorous. At my previous age, I’ll get sentimental,” Bogut mentioned. “It’s humorous how life works. I’m completely happy to be right here.”

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Durant stepped on the courtroom and confirmed what he nearly at all times does when he has a basketball in his hand.

He scored quite a lot of factors, notably on a handful of mid-range jumpers. He arrange his different All-Star teammates for open pictures. He chased down opponents and restricted them defensively.

As soon as it was all executed, the Warriors completed with a win over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday at Oracle Area partly due to Durant’s affect (15 factors, six assists). Beneath the floor, although, this sport meant one thing extra.

Durant had dealt almost all day grieving over the passing of good friend, Cliff Dixon, who was shot and killed at an Atlanta night time membership. Durant referred to as Dixon, a former AAU teammates, his adopted brother and thanked him when he received the 2013-14 regular-season MVP award with the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder. Warriors guard Quinn Cook dinner additionally knew Dixon.

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Therefore, Kerr famous there was a “very somber temper” at Thursday’s morning shootaround.

“For many of us who play this sport or coach this sport, that is our refuge with having the ability to play and having the ability to immerse your self within the sport,” Kerr mentioned. “That’s the easiest way to take care of one thing tragic or one thing troublesome. I do know he can be taking part in with a heavy coronary heart. I hope he can lose himself within the sport and discover some pleasure within the sport itself.”

Durant and Cook dinner didn’t converse to reporters afterwards. However Durant’s mom, Wanda, launched a press release on her Twitter account.

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