Leading by as many as 15, the Golden State Warriors were rolling late last night against the Oklahoma City Thunder. They just simply had to manage the game and maintain the lead. With a little over three minutes remaining, Glenn Robinson III hits a three to push the lead to ten.
Unfortunately for the Dubs, that was their last bucket in the game. The Thunder would go on to score 13 unanswered points to complete the comeback 100-97.
A reflective Steve Kerr shared with the media postgame that the loss was squarely on him.
“We were trying to find open shots,” Kerr said of the final 1:18 of the game, “ Ky (Bowman) was having a great game and we were putting him in the pick-and-roll”
“But we didn’t do a good job— I didn’t do a good job as a coach— of creating the right spacing, of getting the right pieces in the right places on the floor to enable Ky to have the space needed”
Kerr would also cite lack of execution as something that was his fault.
“Fourth quarter, when the pressure came, we didn't execute,” Kerr added. “That’s the next step for this young group. That’s what we’re aiming to improve on, as a group, the players but also the coaches. We have to do our part to put them in the best position to succeed.”
Now with that said, it is admirable that Kerr is putting the blame on him and is willing to learn right along with the young group of guys that he’s coaching. However, I don’t believe that this loss is squarely on Kerr’s shoulders. Granted, Kerr could have drew up a better scheme after the time out. He could have done more to settle the players down—I give him that. But this loss shouldn’t be Kerr’s burden to bear.
He wasn’t the one to tell the players to divert from the DHO’s and screens that were working on offense. He wasn’t among the ones who got caught slipping on defense and giving up backdoor lobs. That was on Omari Spellman to an extent, Robinson, and Willie Cauley-Stein.
Kerr wasn’t out there dribbling the air out of the ball with 12 seconds left. That was Bowman.
The warriors were in a perfect position to win. They had no business losing that game. That meltdown should not reflect the coaching in its entirety.
Let us know what you think! Should Kerr shoulder the blame for the meltdown against Oklahoma City? why? why not? The comments are open.