Programming note: Watch the Warriors take on the Nuggets tonight at 6 p.m. PT streaming live on the MyTeams app.
It sounds like Warriors fans should thank the former Milwaukee Bucks medical staff every day.
In March 2012, Golden State traded Monta Ellis for Andrew Bogut. But according to Bucks owner Marc Lasry, the Warriors were prepared to ship Steph Curry to Milwaukee instead.
Lasry sees the Golden State Warriors as a model franchise, although he did chuckle when Warriors owner Joe Lacob told New York Times Magazine three years ago that the organization is “light years ahead” of the other 29 teams.
“I don’t know if they can be light years ahead if they traded Steph Curry to the Bucks for Andrew Bogut,” Lasry says of a proposed trade before he purchased the Bucks, which has been reported as both fact and urban legend. “That was the deal. But the Bucks’ medical staff didn’t think Steph’s ankle would hold up. That killed the deal.
So, I don’t know if that’s being light years. It’s luck. And that’s fine.” Lasry then smiled and added, “I think we got rid of that medical staff when we bought the team.”
Remember, Curry only appeared in 26 games during the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season because of ankle issues, and he was shut down after playing just nine minutes vs the Clippers on March 11. He underwent surgery on his right ankle in April 2012 and his future was very much up in the air.
Bob Myers — who was hired as assistant GM to Larry Riley in April 2011 — was promoted to general manager on April 24, 2012. Two months later, Golden State drafted Harrison Barnes, Festus Ezeli and Draymond Green. And four months after that, the Warriors signed Curry to a four-year extension.
Needless to say, everything turned out more than OK. But it’s crazy to think about how different things would be if Curry, not Ellis, was sent packing…
Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller