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Monday, December 6, 2021

How Juan Toscano-Anderson is keeping life in perspective despite a dwindling role with the better Golden State Warriors

CLEVELAND — Perspective was the word of the day for Juan Toscano-Anderson, the underdog Oakland native, who was dropped at the end of the Golden State Warriors’ roster this season.

Despite being replaced in the rotation this week by 19-year-old lottery pick Jonathan Kuminga, it was the 28-year-old former two-sided player who was called up by coach Steve Kerr on Thursday night when the Warriors needed a spark in the second half. , fulfilling the prophecy Kerr has been campaigning for since she opted to pick the rookie.

“You just have to stay positive and be ready when your time comes because your time always comes,” Kerr said before tipoff. Toscano-Anderson had gone more than a week without looking at the floor for more than 7 minutes in any given night. But he gave Golden State 16 solid second-half minutes, a crucial part of its 36-8 final quarter that sealed their comeback victory over the Cavaliers. Later, Kerr said, “That’s why you need a guy like Juan. … I couldn’t be more proud of him. I decided to go to Jonathan before him, and he handled it beautifully.” And be ready and take advantage of your chance tonight.

The local kid has endured over the past two seasons as a role player for his teammates and Warriors fanbase on teams that, at best, fell short of the playoffs, or worse, the worst records in the NBA. ended with

A self-conscious Toscano-Anderson described her journey last season as a Cinderella story.

But after getting a glass slipper last season, it doesn’t quite fit this year.

With extras introduced by Cuminga and Moses Moody as well as stalwarts such as Otto Porter Jr., Nemanja Bezelica and Andre Iguodala, Toscano-Andersen knew this season would be a struggle for minutes. He averages only 11.8 per game this season, which is almost half of what he was in the previous two years.

But that’s only part of the perspective Toscano-Andersen is talking about. (He used the term at least half a dozen times in interviews on Thursday alone.)

Just the day before, Toscano-Anderson got a new dose when her phone rang. At the other end was his brother. Something serious had happened, although Juan declined to elaborate on exactly what.

“So I’m sitting here and sometimes upset that I don’t get to play, but my family, my brothers, who are closest to me, have to deal with (abusive) real life,” he said. “And here I am complaining about basketball.”

Growing up as a Warriors fan during the first half of the last decade and given their pedigree, Toscano-Anderson wants to taste the Larry O’Brien Trophy for himself, whether that means a spot minute or a starring role.

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Hometown kid, playing for the local team, earning money playing basketball on television and in front of thousands? Toscano-Anderson realizes this sounds like a pretty sweet gig.

“Yeah, I definitely want to play more. Everybody wants to play,” he said. “But I’m on the best team in the NBA, my hometown team, I get to play with the Hall of Famers. … I could be anywhere else in the world. I could be on another team. I could be on the losing team. I can return to the G League. … it’s perspective, man.”

It helps to have a coach who was in a similar position to trying to establish himself in the league more than two decades ago. Despite tough choices, Kerr has the trust and respect of Toscano-Andersen, which hasn’t always gone in his favor. Through it all, Kerr continued to tell her that her time was coming.

“I’ve been in his shoes since I was a player. It’s a tough place,” Kerr said. “Human nature is to get down when you’re not a part of things. To really make it into this league as a reserve, you can never let yourself go down that path. ,

Added Toscano-Anderson: “When you have a coach who believes in you, it’s the difference maker. … I think Steve is really great at what he does. I think his Has a really great experience for his players. … I believe in what he is doing.”

On Thursday night, he again brought himself into the limelight. One of their lineups, Bezelica, Porter, Steph Curry and Damien Lee, restricted Cleveland to eight fourth-quarter points. Kerr left him there for the entire quarter. When it was time for Drummond Green’s sub to arrive, Kerr called Porter off the floor.

“I always tell Juan that of course the minutes are up and down but when the going gets tough, your number will be called,” Green said. “Tonight, we couldn’t get any traction on the defensive end, and his number was called, and he was ready.”

“His energy was infectious,” Curry said. “And then in the fourth quarter, it took off on both ends of the floor.”

Toscano-Andersen returned with 3:58 in the third quarter for the first time. He never left the court.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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