Steve Kerr's reaction to Warriors blowout over Lakers is the reason he's a great coach
Not only do the Warriors have all this talent, but their coach is one of the best
Golden State beat the pants off the Lakers for a second-straight game, 109-85 Friday night at Staples Center. The Warriors have now won 10 in a row, and have the best record in the league for the first time this season after the Clippers' loss to the Pistons Friday.
The Warriors shot 52 percent from the field, and held the Lakers to 37-percent shooting. Golden State only lost the rebounding battle by one despite having so many fewer offensive rebound opportunities, won the turnover battle (narrowly), had more points in the paint and more fast-break points. All this in a game in which Draymond Green went down with an ankle injury. (X-rays were negative, Green is day-to-day.)
Good times, right?
Nope. Steve Kerr was not pleased with his team's performance Friday night, and let everyone know about it in the post-game presser.
The Warriors beat the Lakers by 24 and Steve Kerr called it one of the worst basketball games he's seen in his life pic.twitter.com/qRswBZYMDD— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) November 26, 2016
"We were awful," kind of sums up Kerr's position in a nutshell.
Now, it's funny that Kerr was so blunt and harsh in a blowout win when everything is rolling for the Warriors, but it's also a telling quote.
There are coaches, often former players (as Kerr is) that will take any win. It doesn't matter how the game was played, after the win they are ebullient and after losses they are distraught. These coaches are living and dying with results and everything else is secondary. But in an 82-game season, you're going to lose some games you play well in -- well, most teams will, maybe not the Warriors -- and win some in which you play terribly. Understanding that process and the difference is important. It's why Gregg Popovich lit up the Spurs after a win over the Mavericks.
The process matters. How you play matters. And the Warriors were sloppy (17 turnovers), the Lakers were just sloppier (18 turnovers). Golden State gave up 42 points in the paint, and 15 second-chance points. They generally played badly, they just made six more 3-pointers (11-of-28) than L.A. (5-of-22). It's a good thing that this is Kerr's approach. It means he values how the Warriors play over what the result is. If you let the opponent have open looks consistently, that's not good. If you don't move the ball well enough, that's not good.
At the same time, Kerr has to be careful. It's a long season, and the Warriors are going to have games where they just don't play well. Like the loss to the Spurs in the opener, for example. Getting a double-digit win that's never in doubt when you play poorly is a sign of how good the Warriors are (which everyone expected). You don't want to go overboard. But overall, this is a great example of what sets Kerr apart from so many coaches who wind up valuing results over process.
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