Matt Barnes Reveals the Meaning Behind All His Tattoos

Matt Barnes was drafted in 2002 and has played in the NBA since 2004. He has carved out a role on the Los Angeles Clippers as a starter who brings defense and physicality. 

Aside from his game play, Barnes is known for the ink on his skin that NBA fans can see on his arms, neck and anywhere that is not covered by his uniform. Barnes took Bleacher Report through the stories and meanings behind particular designs on his body.

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What Will Make 2014-15 a Successful Season for Harrison Barnes?

Few NBA players have gone from star in the making to potential roster filler faster than the Golden State WarriorsHarrison Barnes.

Following a promising rookie campaign, the former North Carolina standout flat-lined in his sophomore year—the product, in no small part, of Andre Iguodala’s stranglehold on the team’s starting small-forward position.

With just two years remaining on his contract (the second being a team option), Barnes, at just 22 years old, is already at a career crossroads: Rebound and regain his phenomenal promise, or risk sliding forever to the NBA fringes.

So what does Barnes have to do to make this a successful season?

As with anything, Barnes’ prospects are as much about tapping into his otherworldly ability as they are another, more unpredictable factor: opportunity.

Between Iguodala, Barnes, veteran Leandro Barbosa and ascendant third-year forward Draymond Green, Golden State’s wing depth doesn’t leave much in the way of wiggle room. And while Barnes’ minutes actually increased from 25.4 to 28.3, his starts dropped dramatically, from 81 his rookie season to just 24 a year ago.

With his role reduced from steady-minute starter to unpredictable reserve, Barnes struggled to forge a consistent rotational niche.

Despite Barnes’ year-two swoon, however, first-year head coach Steve Kerr has been positively effusive about the former All-American. Stressing “everything’s open” as it concerns lineups, Kerr had this to say, as reported by the San Jose Mercury News’ Tim Kawakami:

I’m a big fan of Harrison’s. I think he’s got a ton of talent. He can play a few different positions–I think he can play 2, 3 and 4.

One thing I’m just going to be really open with our team about is that depth is our strength. We have to embrace that. And that means that there are going to be certain nights when it’s going to be your night and certain nights when it’s not.

The best teams accept that and embrace it and end up being stronger for it. And that will be one of our challenges as a group.

No one should take this to mean Barnes’ road to redemption will be laid out before him, of course. Still, there’s a healthy dose of perspective in Kerr’s analysis—the recognition that, at the end of the day, we are still talking about a kid who would’ve just graduated had he stayed in school all four years.

Even if Barnes’ third year winds up being equally disappointing, it seems unlikely to think Golden State would decline his $5.2 million player option. Particularly with the NBA’s new TV deal all but guaranteeing a spike in the league’s salary cap over the next few years.

In the meantime, Kerr’s task will be to find lineups that best suit Barne’s still-blossoming strengths. The good news: Kerr’s triangle-hybrid offense, which places heavy emphasis on both spacing and playmaking ability, should suit Barnes’ skill set much better than Mark Jackson’s more nebulous system.

Indeed, even Barnes seems acutely aware that his biggest strength, at this stage of the game, lies in better picking his spots, telling the Mercury News Diamond Leung:

Those days at least for me, those are going to be put on hold for quite a while. It’s just changing my game and just understanding where I’m going to get my shots now. I’m not going to be iso’d (isolated) on the post, iso’d on the elbow. It’s going to be moving, cutting, some spot-up shots, that kind of stuff.

Without pigeonholing Barnes into one aspect of what is, at its conceptual core, an immensely complicated offense, there is something to be said for the swingman’s strengths jiving nicely with where the triangle tends to flow. Specifically, the corner, a sector Barnes has shown to be one of his most reliable.

Recently, Bleacher Report’s J.M. Poulard explored how Jackson’s insistence on using the young swingman as the primary second-unit scoring option stunted not only the lineup’s offensive flow, but the development of Barnes himself:

Barnes was often the recipient of some terrific passes, and his lone responsibility was to catch and finish. The arrival of Andre Iguodala in the 2013 summer relegated Barnes to the second unit, and that leads us to his second problem.

Former coach Mark Jackson routinely played Barnes with other reserves and asked him to carry the offense during those stretches. Barnes didn’t possess the tools necessary to accomplish that, and it made him look bad.

That’s not to say the only solution is to insert Barnes into the starting lineup; Iguodala is simply too valuable for Kerr to jeopardize his team’s tight-knit chemistry for the sake of assuaging a younger player’s ego. Rather, it’s in how Kerr uses Barnes off the bench that stands to change for the better.

Indeed, the additions of Barbosa and resurgent point guard Shaun Livingston—a pair of dangerous offensive weapons who should help buoy Golden State’s 19th-ranked bench from a season ago—are precisely the kind of players you want Barnes playing alongside.

To be sure, these aren’t magic basketball elixirs. What the Warriors’ new offense and bolstered bench could prove, however, is how important timing and circumstances can be to a particular player’s growth and development.

As for what would constitute a successful season? Statistical guesses tend to be fools’ errands, but here is an earnest attempt nonetheless: 12 points, five rebounds and two assists on 45 percent shooting (including 38 percent from distance) at around 30 minutes per game.

That might not be quite the leap many a Warriors fans were hoping for. But as a bellwether for Barnes’ basketball future, such statistical upticks, particularly as it concerns his efficiency, would be nothing if not encouraging.

Most young stars are compelled to make their name as the face of a lottery-bound loser—a paying of dues in hopes of proving oneself a consummate cornerstone. Embedded as he is with one of the league’s foremost championship contenders, Barnes, much like the San Antonio Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard, doesn’t have that luxury.

What he does have, on the other hand, is a golden opportunity to thrive for a time alongside some of the game’s most incendiary talents. The hope being that, in Barnes’ case, being so close to such soaring stars can somehow spark his own.

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Warriors and Harrison Barnes Unveil New Alternate Jerseys for 2014-15 Season

The Golden State Warriors offered the first glimpse of their new alternate uniforms for the 2014-15 season on Sunday evening.

The new uniform will include a new color for the NBA, slate.

The Golden State Warriors invited a group of social media influencers to Twitter headquarters to unveil the jersey. The influencers got the first look at the jersey and were encouraged to tell the story of the Slate Alternate Uniform on their own social media channels with the hashtag: #DUBSCONFIDENTIAL.

The Warriors will debut the new look on Nov. 15 against the Charlotte Hornets and will then wear them for every Saturday game throughout the remainder of the season.

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Is Harrison Barnes Entering Make-or-Break Season with Golden State Warriors?

Harrison Barnes‘ perceived upside has been saving him for years. 

It wasn’t that big of a deal when Barnes underwhelmed his freshman season at North Carolina. Or when he returned his sophomore year, only to experience similar problems with inconsistency and ultimately shoot 32 percent from the floor in the NCAA tournament.

With that 6’8″ textbook frame, smooth athleticism and all-around offensive game, Barnes’ upside remained intact despite his somewhat unconvincing play.

And he was OK his rookie year in Golden State—9.2 points, 4.1 boards, 43.9 percent shooting—though Barnes still left something to be desired.  

Regardless, his big-time NBA ceiling didn’t go anywhere. And in 2012-13, he flashed enough promise to keep fans and coaches excited—even if that promise came in sporadic spurts and doses, like in the 2013 playoffs, when he averaged 16.1 points a game. 

That April and May, Barnes finally appeared ready to break through as the star many had pegged him to be out of high school.

Until he didn’t. 

Barnes took a head-scratching step back as an NBA sophomore, having regressed or plateaued in a couple of key areas.

While it was disappointing to see his pedestrian scoring average stay roughly the same, the fact that his field-goal percentage dipped below 40 percent is really the bigger concern.

Though the bar has been set fairly high for Barnes since entering the national scene, given his previous status as an consensus top-five recruit, he’s continuously come up short, whether it was at North Carolina or through two years in the pros.

What happens if he fails to make any progress as a third-year NBA forward?

His upside has to expire eventually. How long do we wait before concluding that Barnes’ elevator simply wasn’t built to reach the ceiling his talent projects?

Maybe former coach Mark Jackson just didn’t know how to maximize Barnes’ ability or put him in position to succeed. Maybe new coach Steve Kerr has the formula.

At just 22 years old, it’s too early to write off Barnes, who’s just trying to find a way to convert those flashes into every-game occurrences. We’ve seen the complete offensive repertoire, from three-point shooting to mid-range scoring and explosive drives to the rack. The next step is putting it all together, a step he’s struggled to take.

Just studying his numbers and observing his tendencies, it’s not tough to pinpoint where he’s gone wrong.

As an on-ball, one-on-one scorer, Barnes has trouble getting to the basket, resulting in too many low-percentage jumpers—jumpers he’s capable of hitting, just not with legitimate consistency. 

He averaged just 2.9 drives per game this past season and ultimately shot only 27.2 percent on pull-up jumpers, a shot typically taken as a backup plan for getting to the basket. 

Barnes’ rookie year, 32.3 percent of his shots came at the rim. His sophomore year, that number fell to just 22.4 percent.

Off the ball, Barnes failed to capitalize as a shooter, having connected on just 40 percent of his catch-and-shoot jumpers and 37 percent of his spot-up threes. Those aren’t horrible numbers, but given his struggles getting to the basket, Barnes can’t afford to miss the good shots created for him by teammates.

Go ahead and blame the Warriors‘ ex-coaching staff for misusing Barnes in the offense. But the inaccurate shot-making is on him. 

The problem or concern is that despite sporting textbook shooting mechanics, his jumper really hasn’t improved much since 2010.

Barnes’ three-point percentage has essentially been the same since his freshman year at North Carolina—right around average. His free-throw clip remains below average, while his true shooting percentage plummeted this year to an ugly 48.6 percent. 

Obviously, Barnes will never reach his potential unless his shooting accuracy and consistency improve. 

With a good-looking stroke, I’d like to think some of Barnes’ shooting troubles are tied to confidence. He hasn’t exactly been used much in Golden State’s offense over the past two years—his usage rate has been under 18 percent in each. 

Hopefully that changes under coach Kerr, who seems motivated to get the most out of Barnes and keep him heavily involved. 

“Harrison is incredibly driven. So we’ve got big plans for him this year,” Kerr told KNBR-680 (via CSNBayArea.com). ”We think he can be a great player in this league…he’s going to continue to get better.”

It’s not just his offensive game that needs fine-tuning. With Andre Iguodala in the starting lineup, the Warriors have been a much tougher team to score on than when Barnes has been in there, as outlined by RealGM’s Benjamin Cantor. Feel free to add defense to the list of things in which Barnes must show improvement. 

Overall, it would ultimately be bad news if he didn’t take that next step in Year 3, considering how long he’s been stuck on the same one. At some point, there aren’t going to be any free passes left with Barnes’ name on them. 

Because upside only holds meaning for those capable of reaching it. There’s no denying Barnes’ NBA ceiling, but sooner or later, unless he finally takes off, we’re going to have to rule that his developmental elevator is officially out of service. 

 

Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference.com and NBA.com unless otherwise noted.

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Former NBA player Marvin Barnes dies at 62

Barnes led Providence College to Final Four in 1973

      
 

 

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Former NBA player Marvin Barnes dies at 62 (Yahoo Sports)

Marvin Barnes, who led Providence College to the Final Four in 1973 and starred in the old American Basketball Association, has died, a newspaper reported Monday. Kevin Stacom, a college teammate and one of Barnes’ closest friends, told the Providence Journal on Monday (http://bit.ly/1Bnw3vq ) that Barnes died at a home in Providence. ”Marvin will always be remembered as one of the greatest Friars of all-time,” Providence College Athletic Director Bob Driscoll said in a statement released by the school. As a senior, Barnes averaged 22 points and 18.7 rebounds and was the second overall pick of the 1974 NBA draft, behind only UCLA’s Bill Walton.

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Matt Barnes, DeAndre Jordan wear great costumes to party

Jim Racalto Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan held a costume party for Labor Day weekend, where he and teammate Matt Barnes did not disappoint in their attire. Jordan went as Jimi Hendrix and pulled it off flawlessly, while Barnes decided to go as Prince and basically looked just like him. Barnes posted a photo on Instagram […] Sports-Kings – The Kings of Sports Lists – Sports bloggers that cover the NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, fantasy sports, college sports and much more. From funny videos to pictures we have it all

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Matt Barnes and DeAndre Jordan Go All-out for Costume Party

Matt Barnes and DeAndre Jordan of the Los Angeles Clippers decided to go all-out for a costume party with these terrific outfits.

Jordan decided to go as Jimi Hendrix and pulls it off with the terrific Afro. Barnes went as Prince and posted the following picture on the way to Jordan’s party while enjoying some Fireball: ”Don’t judge me….. Headed to @deandrejordan6 costume party!! Ya boys going as Prince!! #LaborDayTurnUp #EndOfTheSummer.” 

[Instagram]

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Denver Nuggets: Trading For Harrison Barnes

Denver Nuggets: Trading For Harrison Barnes
By Mike Elworth: Owner and Publisher/Hoopstuff…
Nuggets Get: Harrison Barnes and Marresse Speights
Warriors Get: Timofey Mozgov and Randy Foye
The Denver Nuggets have some excellent talent. They have a franchise player in point guard Ty Lawson who is one of the best players at his position and elite on offense. They have a premier perimeter duo with Arron Afflalo who is one of the best 2 way players in the NBA and Danilo Gallinari who is an 16 point per game scorer and an excellent shooter. They have 2 very talented young big men in Kenneth Faried who is one of the best energy players and rebounders in the NBA and is playing for Team USA and JaVale McGee, who is one of the biggest and longest players in the NBA and a very strong rebounder and shot blocker (although his intelligence on the court is a problem). They also have a very solid group of role players with Wilson Chandler, J.J. Hickson, Timofey Mozgov, Randy Foye, Darrell Arthur and…

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Blueprint for Harrison Barnes to Get Career Back on Track Next Season

Harrison Barnes needs to find the blueprint to revive his young and promising career after spending much of last season at the lost and found.

Barnes was expected to take the next step after an impressive playoff run in his first NBA season. He transformed from an average starter during the regular season of his rookie campaign to a game-changer in the 2013 playoffs, partly as a result of the opportunity given him by David Lee’s injury in the first round of the postseason.

He posted a career playoff high of 26 points in a critical Game 4 overtime home victory against the San Antonio Spurs. In 12 postseason games in 2013, Barnes averaged 16.1 points and 6.4 rebounds.

As expectations started rising through the roof, Barnes was relegated to the sixth-man spot when the Dubs snagged free-agent wing Andre Iguodala.

As a result, the North Carolina product drastically underperformed this season. In 2013-14 season, Barnes averaged 9.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists. He averaged almost three additional minutes more than he did in his rookie season, when he put up 9.2 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game.

Barnes obviously has a few areas that he needs to improve to get his career back on track.

Shooting

Barnes’ shooting was one of his biggest hindrances this season, since his percentages dropped across the board. His field-goal percentage dove from 43.9 to 39.9 percent. His three-point percentage went from 35.9 to 34.7 percent, and his free-throw shooting fell from 75.8 to 71.8 percent.

He needs to work hard this summer by shooting the ball hundreds of times per day. He must find the spots on the floor and the go-to shots that work for him.

Yes, part of the decline was caused by being teamed with a bench that was unable to score consistently, and Barnes would occasionally force shots to compensate. The bench averaged only 28 points per game and posted a 41.0 percent shooting clip.

Confidence is the key to shooting, and Barnes needs to completely forget about last season. He still has a high upside, but it’s critical that early next season he focuses on taking (and making) high-percentage shots.

He also needs to work on his shots from behind the arc. His ability to hit the clutch three, like his teammate Draymond Green has demonstrated, will help space the floor and create driving lanes resulting in higher percentage shots closer to the hoop.

The bottom line is practice makes perfect, and Barnes needs to make shooting a high priority this offseason.

Dribbling

Barnes has already pointed out that he needs work on his handle this summer. 

With head coach Steve Kerr’s potential new offense so focused on ball movement and spacing, Barnes is going to need to improve on those vital skills, as noted by the San Jose Mercury News’ Diamond Leung.

Barnes will be tasked with being able to dribble in short spurts to facilitate a pass, drive to the hoop or create space for a transitioning teammate. By improving his ball-handling skills, Barnes can steer away from predictable moves that experienced and skilled defenders can sniff out.

He will also need to mix in some athletic moves, so that he doesn’t look like a robot.

Barnes’ needs to have the same mindset while handling the ball that he does going to the rack for the dunk. He looks fearless in those occasions. By looking for contact, Barnes should be able to approach doubling the paltry 2.3 free-throw attempts per game he averaged last year. He just needs to practice those free throws.

With a capable handle, Barnes can take the next step forward.

Learning How to Create

Barnes earned the “Black Falcon” nickname during a trip around the ESPN studios his senior year in high school. He cemented that nickname with his high-flying, rim-rocking jams in his first season. 

In his second season, Barnes still put up some highlight-reel moves but they were few and far between—at least when compared to the previous year.

Barnes is still going through the growing pains that often characterize the early stages of an NBA player’s career. But with the new offense, Barnes should have a lot more room to demonstrate his raw athleticism and skill level.

By improving in both of the aforementioned two areas, shooting and dribbling, Barnes should be able to put it all together on the offensive end. But, he needs to get more physical, so he can take the dribble and use his athletic frame to finish more convincingly around the basket.

Establishing consistency will be key to Barnes’ development on offense. He disappears too often and let’s his other teammates take over the game. Rather, Barnes needs to be a steady hand and be ready for a Stephen Curry pass or an Andrew Bogut kick-out. When he receives the ball, he must be assertive and drive into the lane and either finish or find another Warrior who has an open look.

Whether he is creating opportunities for himself or teammates, he needs to be productive every possession.

 

Bottom Line 

Barnes needs to take ownership of his future and the struggles that he had last season. He can’t dwell on the negatives but instead needs to turn those experiences into building blocks.

He has the word attached to him that no player entering his third season likes to hear: “potential.” Translated, it means Barnes hasn’t quite lived up to expectations based on his statistics and style of play. 

Coach Kerr’s offense is expected open a lot more opportunities for Barnes, but he has to take advantage of those chances. He needs to be a lot more aggressive on the court and not always allow the game to come to him.

He will have to learn how to succeed in coming off the bench or in whatever situation he is inserted. Being adaptable will show his teammates that he is fully invested in taking the next step in his maturation as a player.

Averages of 12.5 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists would be a strong improvement next season, but he also has to show that he can consistently make the four other players on the court better when he plays.  An offense that relies on more options than just the “Splash Brothers” (Curry and Klay Thompson) is a lot more effective.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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