NBA Finals: Steve Kerr to coach Game 2? Warriors GM Myers says it's 'still status quo'

A report from Friday indicated Warriors head coach Steve Kerr could return to the bench as early as Game 2, but in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, GM Bob Myers said it's 'status quo' for the coach who has missed all but two games of the postseason.

"I think we're going to hear, 'Steve might come back' for the rest of the series," said Myers. "It's an easy thing for someone to say. I could say that every day, and it could be true. But until it becomes something different than that, whether it means he's not or he is, it's going to keep being, 'he might.' 

"That's what keeps the question being asked, which is fair. People want to know. I would say nothing has changed from last night to today, when you're talking to me. Otherwise, we would have announced it. So it's still status quo. We're seeing how he feels and we'll read that on a daily basis."

Kerr coached in Games 1 and 2 of the opening-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, but took a leave of absence to deal with lingering health issues related to his back that has continued to cause discomfort and he hasn't returned to the sidelines since. In his stead, Mike Brown has taken over duties as the acting head coach and the team hasn't skipped a beat, going 11-0 under his watch.

Brown has served as head coach with both the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers, but not on an interim basis -- and especially not on a game-to-game basis like this situation in Golden State. Despite that, he said Saturday he doesn't feel his current status, which could change in the blink of an eye if Kerr returns to the bench, is a difficult one to prepare for mentally.

"No, because in my mind with what Bob and Steve both told me ... They both said 'hey, you're the coach until we tell you otherwise.' So it's simple for me to plan that way. If there comes a time I am not, I would've been prepared to coach the game, but it's easy for me to take a step back."

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, right, and assistant coach Mike Brown. Jaime Valdez / USA TODAY Sports

While Kerr's leave of absence is ongoing, he has remained intimately involved in the preparation and game-planning behind the scenes, and his health is said to be improving in the process. So what's the difference between preparing game plans/talking with the team at halftime and after the game compared to coaching on the sidelines?

"I think it's just sustaining a level for that amount of time. Not being able to pause -- for him, it might be laying down for a minute," Myers said. 

"It's all different as far as what gives him relief. So it's actually just feeling less pain, to be honest. We've all experienced pain in some forms that has made us feel debilitated in whatever we do. There are days where we say, 'I can't go to work today, I can't function.' It's not a sickness as we most know it, like the flu, but it's enough for him to say, 'I can't go to work in that fashion. I can sit in the back, speak my piece at halftime, before and after ..."

The Warriors are a perfect 13-0 this postseason and hold a 1-0 series lead in the NBA Finals over the Cleveland Cavaliers. Game 2 is Sunday night and they would gladly welcome him back onto the sidelines, health permitting, but at this point it doesn't seem his status has changed despite reports to the contrary.

Our Latest Stories