Warriors

Alec Burks explains how Steve Kerr sold him on signing with Warriors

Alec Burks explains how Steve Kerr sold him on signing with Warriors

Alec Burks agreed to a one-year contract with the Thunder on July 1, but everything changed four days later when Oklahoma City traded Paul George to the Clippers.

The Thunder allowed Burks out of his deal, and on July 8 he elected to join the Warriors.

"I talked to Steve Kerr and he sold me on it, basically," Burks told reporters in Oakland last Friday. "An opportunity. Playing winning basketball -- playoff basketball. Playing with great players."

With Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston no longer with the organization -- and Klay Thompson sidelined because of a torn left ACL -- the opportunity definitely will be there.

As a member of the Jazz in 2013-14, Burks averaged 14.0 points and 2.7 assists per game, while shooting nearly 46 percent overall and 35 percent from deep.

But injuries limited the University of Colorado product to 100 games combined over the next three seasons, and Utah eventually traded him last November to Cleveland, who shipped him to Sacramento in February.

The soon-to-be 28-year-old will get a fresh start with the Dubs.

Did Kerr mention anything else during his pitch to Burks?

[RELATEDCurry's one-word answer when asked if Dubs make playoffs]

"Playing out here with the fans," he said. "The fans -- what I've seen being a visitor -- the fans are amazing.

"That's pretty much it."

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Steph Curry fires back after Kevin Durant criticizes Warriors offense

Steph Curry fires back after Kevin Durant criticizes Warriors offense

Kevin Durant has sent some mixed messages about what he wants in his basketball situation.

He was the man in Oklahoma City, co-starring with Russell Westbrook in an offense heavily predicated on isolation basketball. In search of playing a more beautiful game, Durant left OKC in 2016 to join the Warriors and Steve Kerr's ball-movement offense.

After three years and unparalleled success, Durant exited the Bay to head to Brooklyn, signing with the Nets in free agency in July. The two-time NBA Finals MVP discussed his exit from the Warriors in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, and he had some critiques of the ball-movement offense. Durant believes the system is limited, and there would come a time in the playoffs where he needed to "go into his bag" to get his own shot because the opposition had figured out how to slow down Kerr's offense.

Curry, who has been almost unstoppable in the Warriors' system, had something to say about Durant's criticism.

"Well, I don't care what plays we ran," Curry told ESPN's Rachel Nichols. "We won two championships. And at the end of the day, we had a lotta talent and there was an expectation of us figuring out how to balance all that. And we talked a lot about it throughout the three-year run. It wasn't always perfect, but I think in terms of, you know, the results and what we were able to do on the floor, that kinda speaks for itself. We all wanna play iso-ball at the end of the day in some way, shape or form. But I'd rather have some championships, too."

[RELATED: Steph responds to KD's belief Warriors never accepted him]

It's hard to argue with either point of view. Durant is one of the most talented scorers in NBA history, and was a seamless fit in Kerr's offense. But his isolation game almost is unguardable, so it's understandable why he would want the ball in his hands more. Really, who wouldn't want Durant to have the ball?

But as Curry said, the Warriors' results over the past five seasons speak to the success and potency of their ball-movement offense, one of the reasons the Warriors almost were able to win the 2019 NBA Finals even after Durant ruptured his Achilles. Just turn on the tape, and you can see how effective the offense is, both with and without Durant.

Warriors' Steph Curry plans to play for Team USA in 2020 Olympic Games

Warriors' Steph Curry plans to play for Team USA in 2020 Olympic Games

The year 2020 is going to be different for the USA, and I'm not just talking about the upcoming presidential election.

As you're aware, every A- and B-level star elected not to play for coach Gregg Popovich and Team USA this summer (no offense, Donovan Mitchell). As a result, the Americans sputtered to a seventh-place finish in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. But don't expect the big names to take the same approach to the 2020 Olympic Games.

Steph Curry, for one, is ready to get buckets on the international stage.

"That is the plan, for sure," the Warriors star told ESPN's Rachel Nichols on if he plans to play in Tokyo next summer. "You know, obviously knock on wood, you don't want any injuries or things like that to interfere.

"Definitely wanna go," Curry said. "I've never been on the Olympic team. I've been on two World Cup championship gold-medal teams. But the Olympics is the experience that I want. And next year will hopefully be it."

Team USA is just as excited for Steph to join the squad.

The seventh-place finish was Team USA's worst international showing since its Bronze Medal in the disaster that was the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. The Americans have won three straight gold medals since then, buoyed by teams led by Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Kevin Durant and coach Mike Krzyzewski. With Curry's commitment to the 2020 games, expect other marquee names to line up behind him to lead the Red, White and Blue to another gold medal.

"We're still the best," Curry said. "If we get the guys that are supposed to be there, in terms of, you know, representing us in the Olympic stage and the commitment's been there, and I think it'll be there next year."

Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard also said he plans to play in 2020.

[RELATED: Steph responds to KD saying Warriors never accepted him]

With Team USA's latest redemption tour underway, Curry will be tasked with being one of the leaders in getting Team USA back to its rightful place atop the international basketball world.

That's bad news for the rest of the world.