Kerr: “We Like the Path That We're On"
Coach Kerr and Bob Myers reflect on 2020-21, Look Ahead to Next Season
Warriors’ President of Basketball Operations and General Manager Bob Myers and Head Coach Steve Kerr wrapped up the Warriors’ season with a final meeting with media on Monday. They addressed questions from media regarding the Dubs’ 2020-21 campaign, player development, what their focus will be on headed into next season, and more.
Take a listen to their complete interviews, or take a look at some of the highlights below.
What is your assessment of how things were this season?
BOB MYERS: “Can look at it both ways. Some good things. The result obviously not what we wanted. The goal was to make the Playoffs. We didn't do it, so we have to accept that and deal with it and be better in that regard.”
“How you lose sometimes builds a foundation to winning. It doesn't excuse not making the Playoffs. It doesn't mean we're happy. But I do like what that locker room looked like in a loss and what that last month or so looked like and those last few games.”
What are your thoughts on the state of your roster and any perceived deficiencies?
MYERS: “Most teams deal with some deficiencies, and I think we've certainly acknowledged there's holes. We had a thin margin for error this year, and that's why you saw in the last week or so some very close games and games that could have gone either way. But they didn't go our way, and we've got to own that, too.”
How is the Warriors timeline to win another NBA Championship with Stephen Curry?
MYERS: “When you're lucky enough to kind of fall into a player like that in my position, I think you owe it to them to try to win. Those people don't come along too often with that kind of talent that he obviously has.”
“It's something we're constantly looking at and certainly we'll try and do. We want to win. Our payroll is not a payroll that will reflect any type of rebuilding. It's a payroll that's trying to win a championship, so that's how we're going to approach it.”
Will the team make additions through their draft picks or elsewhere?
MYERS: “It depends on who [the draftees] are, right, and it depends on what else we do, depends what's available, it depends on what optionality exists. I know those answers aren't what you want to hear, but the truth is you can look at a lot of different things and some come to fruition, some don't. I do know we need veterans, and the one area I can say without kind of equivocating is we have to add some veterans in free agency. We just have to. We're well aware of that. We'll try to do it.”
After Friday’s loss to the Grizzlies, Green said he expects to be heavily involved in the off-season moves. How involved are the core players in roster building?
MYERS: “The guy has never not been involved. He's not capable of not being involved, which I value and encourage in Steph and Klay…. Their opinions matter. They're harder to find than somebody like me. I love them weighing in. We just talked half an hour ago and [Green] has thoughts and opinions, which are great… Draymond will probably be telling us what to do when he's gone.”
How difficult is it to navigate between playing at a Championship level with a veteran ore while trying to develop young talent?
SEVE KERR: “Well, that's the job. Every year is totally unique… This year everything changed with Klay's injury, and that was the challenge was to say, Okay, how can we be really competitive but also try to bring our young players along at the same time. That was, I think, a worthy goal because to be where we want to be when Klay comes back, we need these younger guys to be pretty good. Was that easy? No. It was not easy. But you see the benefits as you go through the season.”
What from that last part of the year do you want to repeat next year and build on over the off-season?
KERR: “[Over the last 20 games] we were the No. 1 ranked defense. We were the No. 8 ranked offense. History tells us if you want to be a championship contender, you've got to be top 10 in both offense and defense. To do that for a quarter of the season with the group that we had, with the injuries that we had, was really encouraging.”
“What did we learn from that? Well, we learned that Juan Toscano-Anderson is an important piece of our team, that he can really help us next year; that Jordan Poole can really help us next year; that playing the way we did with the floor spacing and the movement was really effective for us.”
What did you learn anything about how to handle getting a smaller team to work on the boards this year?
KERR: “Yeah, I think one thing I learned, honestly, is that when I really held the players' feet to the fire, they rebounded well. When we played three or four good games in a row and we rebounded fine and we sort of forgot about it, we'd have a game where we just got destroyed.”
“I think I need to do a better job, frankly, of doing it every day in practice. Even if it's just two minutes, even if it's a comment here or there, jolting them. I've got to do a better job of helping them on a daily basis understand that if we're playing small we're undermanned and all five guys got to engage and nobody is allowed to go unaccounted for on a possession where they don't box out and we give up two points.”
Do you see Poole growing as that guy off the bench you can put the ball in his hands?
KERR: “Absolutely. You can see his play making down the stretch. He gets places most players can't get to. He's so much more than just a shooter. So he's very dynamic and made great strides, so I have no doubt if we have Klay healthy, it's really fun to think about Jordan and Klay in those minutes when Steph and Draymond are off the floor. That's exciting. Doesn't mean it's going to automatically work, but maybe Jordan, Andrew, and Klay together, that's a pretty dynamic group that you've got three guys who can score in different ways. And Jordan with the ability to make plays, get into the paint and distribute the ball, now you're talking about some firepower. That's exciting.”
What's your biggest regret and what are you most proud of this season as a coach?
KERR: “Biggest regret is just not making the Playoffs… As far as what I'm most proud of, it's for sure the finish and the fight the guys showed after 50 games where we were sort of lost in the wilderness. I thought our guys did a great job of climbing their way out of the hole and making the season very meaningful.”
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