Connor Letourneau
Connor Letourneau
Senior NBA and sports enterprise writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Portland, Ore., native. @thedbk alum. cletourneau@sfchronicle.comSource
San Ramon, CA
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How Roots SC is becoming a haven for Oakland’s downtrodden sports fans

How Roots SC is becoming a haven for Oakland’s downtrodden sports fans

Microphone in hand, G-Eazy stood in front of the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra as he surveyed the pregame spectacle of a Saturday night at Laney College Football Stadium: bleachers packed with rowdy soccer fans in Oakland Roots SC gear; huge banners emblazoned with “Know Your Roots” and “Oakland First. Always”; the smell of sizzling meat from more than a half dozen food trucks. “I’m so excited to be here,” G-Eazy, an Oakland native and the newest member of the Roots’ ownership group, told a capacity crowd of 5,509 as he performed his hit single, “Me, Myself and I.” “This is such an...

Oct 12
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How Marquese Chriss’ emergence affects Warriors’ draft decisions

How Marquese Chriss’ emergence affects Warriors’ draft decisions

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateMarquese Chriss has seen mock drafts projecting the Warriors to take former Memphis center James Wiseman with their top-5 pick in June’s NBA draft.Though he doesn’t seek out such speculation, Chriss might click a link if he stumbles upon it on Instagram or Twitter. The arrival of Wiseman likely would hurt Chriss’ chances of building off a . But over the past seven months, as he played on three contracts with the Warriors, Chriss came to realize that his new team is more invested in him than his previous three.Golden State views...

May 20, 2020
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Young Warriors relish learning about Michael Jordan, ‘the one who changed the game’

Young Warriors relish learning about Michael Jordan, ‘the one who changed the game’

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateEach Sunday evening, before taking a seat on his living-room couch in Windsor, Ontario, Warriors guard Mychal Mulder pulls on one of his more than 30 pairs of Air Jordans.Born in 1994, Mulder’s only memories of Michael Jordan’s playing days are from Jordan’s forgettable Wizards stint in the early 2000s. As a kid, Mulder knew Jordan more as a style icon, someone whose signature shoes were must-haves at Mulder’s grade school.Over the past several weeks, while watching “The Last Dance” documentary series in his Jordan Retros, Mulder...

May 16, 2020
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Warriors’ 1,720 layoffs are largest Bay Area coronavirus job cuts

Warriors’ 1,720 layoffs are largest Bay Area coronavirus job cuts

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateThe Warriors laid off 1,720 part-time event staff in mid-March — the to date during coronavirus — with the California Employment Development Department.Though the report doesn’t specify the duration of the layoffs, team spokesman Raymond Ridder told The Chronicle that the employees will return to work as soon as Chase Center is allowed to begin hosting events again. Employees were notified shortly after the NBA suspended play March 11 to help curtail the spread of the coronavirus.The layoffs were limited to employees whose job...

May 12, 2020
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Ugly defense overshadows Curry’s milestone as Warriors get blown out by Jazz

Ugly defense overshadows Curry’s milestone as Warriors get blown out by Jazz

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateThe Warriors landed in Salt Lake City around 2 a.m. Saturday after their flight was delayed multiple times because of mechanical issues with the team plane.Forced to cancel shootaround so his players could get much-needed sleep, Golden State head coach Steve Kerr only had a brief meeting with his team to go over the game plan for a potential title contender. Asked pregame how he was feeling, Kerr said, “I have no idea what to expect.”He got a worst-case scenario.From the moment they tipped off Saturday night at Vivint Arena, the...

January 24, 2021
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How Warriors’ Steph Curry became the best free-throw shooter in NBA history

How Warriors’ Steph Curry became the best free-throw shooter in NBA history

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateAs he acclimates to an overhauled supporting cast, Warriors guard Stephen Curry is coming to view the free-throw line as a sort of refuge.Fifteen feet from the basket, as he clenches his mouthpiece, taps his right toe just behind the nail at the exact center of the line, positions his right foot a couple of inches in front of his left, takes a deep breath, dribbles the ball once and shoots it, Curry forgets all the pressures of being the face of the franchise. In those several seconds, he lets his mind clear as he awaits the swish...

December 31, 2020
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Warriors’ Draymond Green, James Wiseman test positive for coronavirus

Warriors’ Draymond Green, James Wiseman test positive for coronavirus

Forward Draymond Green and rookie center James Wiseman — the No. 2 pick in last month’s draft — missed the Warriors’ first group practice of training camp Monday after testing positive for the coronavirus, a league source confirmed with The Chronicle.Head coach Steve Kerr is prohibited from naming the two players who tested positive last week. After announcing that Green and Wiseman were out Monday, he declined to elaborate about the reason behind their absences before telling reporters, “I think you guys all got it.”The awkward back-and-forth is the latest example of the strange new...

December 7, 2020
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Derailed by the coronavirus, NFL hopefuls go to Plan Bs to receive attention

Derailed by the coronavirus, NFL hopefuls go to Plan Bs to receive attention

Traveon Beck was feeling optimistic. For two months, the former Cal defensive back had awoken at 5 a.m. to slog through rigorous workouts, adding 15 pounds of muscle and improving his 40-yard dash time.After he didn’t land an invite to the NFL scouting combine, Beck — fresh off an injury-marred senior season — knew that the Bears’ March 20 pro day would be his best chance to convince a team to draft him. Then, just a few days before scouts were scheduled to arrive on campus, Beck learned that to limit the spread of the coronavirus.“I was a lot more explosive and a lot faster, so I was...

April 8, 2020
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How Juan Toscano-Anderson escaped ‘monsters’ of his youth to become Oakland’s Warrior

How Juan Toscano-Anderson escaped ‘monsters’ of his youth to become Oakland’s Warrior

Retired teacher Wilhelmina Attles was cleaning her kitchen last month when she came across a coffee mug adorned with signatures from one of her old third-grade classes at Montclair Elementary School.Toward the bottom of the cup was a familiar name in green marker: Juan Toscano-Anderson, now a 6-foot-6, 213-pound backup forward for the Golden State Warriors who has become a fan favorite.But when Toscano-Anderson first arrived at Mrs. Attles’ classroom in cornrows and a Larry Hughes replica Warriors jersey, he was an 8-year-old from the urban flatlands of East Oakland in a room filled with...

March 19, 2021
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How Warriors’ Steph Curry transformed himself into a quality defender

How Warriors’ Steph Curry transformed himself into a quality defender

This is a carousel. Use Next and Previous buttons to navigateBefore he added necessary bulk, before he cut down on reach-ins, before he stopped giving up a couple backdoor layups per game, Warriors guard Stephen Curry approached then-head coach Mark Jackson with a request: let him defend his position.It was fall 2013, and Curry was tired of hearing that he was a second-tier point guard. Perhaps he’d cement himself as one of the league’s best, he figured, if he could make life difficult on Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and others. The only problem? Curry was ill-equipped for such a...

February 26, 2021
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