Warriors

Steve Kerr's absence from Warriors' bench means two things for sure

Steve Kerr's absence from Warriors' bench means two things for sure

Programming note: Warriors-Blazers Game 4 coverage starts tonight at 6:30pm with Warriors Pregame Live on NBC Sports Bay Area, and streaming live right here.

Steve Kerr’s physical absence from the stage in the NBA Playoffs means a lot of things. It all depends on what you want from this development.

If you think the Warriors should win anyway, you will decide it will mean something but not a lot. If you think they should lose, it is a catastrophe, and when layered with Kevin Durant’s injury, it is a three-story catastrophe with a massive entry hall, a huge spiral staircase, a vast backyard with an Olympic pool and a shooting range.

But here are two things it means for sure.

One, nobody will be able to say they were lucky if they win, which for some reason still bothers people around here, as though luck is some sort of shame-inducing insult to be avoided.

And two, they will not accept your pity if they lose, least of all Kerr. Kerr is much better at showing anger than he is acknowledging pity, and you saw plenty of the former at his presser Sunday.

In an attempt to both granularize and overthink what has been pretty boilerplate playoff series so far, many folks have gone to Mike Brown, Kerr’s new Luke Walton, to declare an Achilles heel.

Except that (a) players determine success in the NBA, and only the very worst coaches impede talent from achieving its true level. Mike Brown is not among those coaches, and those who think he is are fools.

Except that (b) Kerr will be around for planning sessions, and there will be the rest of the coaching staff at Brown’s side so that continuity will not be an issue unless Brown’s voice is so alien that a group of veteran players who have won one title and nearly won a second will somehow lose their way.

The danger here is that we might be minimizing his absence, when in fact we don’t have the slightest idea how it will affect the Warriors. Even with the 43 games Walton coached in Kerr’s absence after this first back reaction, when people feared the team would fall off the earth, the Warriors played more than half those games against non-playoff teams, while playoff games are almost by necessity are high-leverage situations piled atop each other in a gigantic heap.

It’s not comparing cats and dogs, but it is comparing terriers and rottweilers. In short, this could be a lot tougher than we think it is. We have no idea, because there is no real metric for this, only a lot of half-educated guesswork.

You know, what we do best.

Even Five-Thirty-Eight.com, The Place Where Twos And Fours Go To Find Love, took the Warriors’ two wins last week, factored in Kerr’s absence and decided that the Warriors are now 67 percent favorites to win the title, up from 63 percent.

But if the Warriors cannot navigate the postseason without Kerr, then they’ll have failed, pure and simple. Context is all well and good, and we believe in context with all our might, but one of the contexts of this Warrior team is that no excuses will be accepted. It is the price they pay for being a 2-to-1 favorite from the second they signed Durant. After all, life is as windy as it is lonely at the top.

Kerr will return when he can, and it is hoped that he won’t do it until he knows he can, rather than thinks he can or hopes he can. But as it affects the Warriors . . . well, the nation has spoken.

No alibis. No luck. Until there is new evidence, they do, or they do not. Period.

Steph Curry out at least 10 more days for Warriors with groin injury

Steph Curry out at least 10 more days for Warriors with groin injury

Programming note: Watch Thursday night's Warriors-Rockets game streaming live at 5 p.m. PT on the MyTeams app.

Steph Curry is Houston bound.

The two-time NBA MVP is traveling with the Warriors to Texas for the three-game road trip, but he will not play in any of the contests, the team announced Wednesday.

The Warriors will face the Rockets on Thursday, the Mavericks on Saturday and the Spurs on Sunday.

Curry will be re-evaluated in 10 days, which means he's scheduled to also miss next week's games against the Thunder (Wednesday) and the Trail Blazers (Friday). Golden State will host the Kings next Saturday, which is 10 days from now.

[RELATED: Report: Steph went to Draymond's house to get his side of the story]

The three-time NBA champion has missed the Warriors' last three games -- wins over the Nets and Hawks, and a loss to the Clippers. He is averaging 29.5 points, 6.1 assists and 5.0 rebounds this season, while shooting 51.5 percent from the field and over 49 percent from 3-point range.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

Two positives, two negatives from Warriors' back-to-back vs. Clippers, Hawks

Two positives, two negatives from Warriors' back-to-back vs. Clippers, Hawks

OAKLAND -- The Warriors on Tuesday completed the third of 12 back-to-back sets that they will have this season, and this one might have a lasting impact.

There are few moments to remember and many to regret, most notably the blow-up between Kevin Durant and Draymond Green on Monday night.

Here are two positives and two negatives culled from splitting the two games, a loss to the Clippers in Los Angeles and a win over the Hawks in Oakland:

POSITIVES

The bench didn’t waver

With Stephen Curry missing both games and Green missing the second while on suspension, the Warriors needed a boost from their reserves. They generally got what they wanted.

The bench scored 39 points on 68.2 percent shooting against the Clippers. It was the starters' 77 points on 40.3 percent shooting that failed the test.

Against the Hawks, the bench didn’t shoot as well, perhaps because two reserves -- Quinn Cook and Jonas Jerebko -- were in the starting lineup. Cook and Jerebko combined for 32 points (46.4 percent), 17 rebounds and eight assists.

If Cook and Jerebko keep making shots and stretching the floor, the Warriors will benefit.

Iguodala’s shot looks niiice

If there is a sense the Oracle Arena crowd holds its collective breath every time Andre Iguodala hoists a 3-pointer, it’s because it does.

When he misses, and sometimes badly, there is a groan.

[RELATED: Iguodala references Kobe-Shaq when asked about Draymond-KD beef]

When they go in, there is plenty of extra hearty in the cheer.

These days, they’ve been going in. Iguodala, the team’s multi-skilled Sixth Man, scored 22 points, on 8-of-12 shooting, including 4-of-5 from deep, over the last two games.

Since missing his first eight shots from beyond the arc, Iguodala is 8 of 14. That’s 57.1 percent. He won’t maintain that pace -- nobody does -- but that scoring boost is particularly timely with Curry out.

NEGATIVES

The Green-Durant quarrel

The Warriors can’t hide this one. They can’t deny it. Durant and Green squabbled in plain sight Monday night, with teammates trying to soothe each of them.

With the score tied and about five seconds remaining in regulation, Green yanked down a rebound. Durant was a few feet away pleading for the ball. Green ignored him and went dribbling up the court. He committed a turnover, the Warriors did not get off a shot, and the game went into overtime, with Durant fouling out and Golden State fading over the final minutes.

That led to the dispute on the bench that carried over into the locker room. It also prompted the Warriors to suspend Green for conduct detrimental to the team.

This might be the biggest tiff yet involving Green, a firebrand that injects energy and enthusiasm but in this instance might have become too abrasive for the general good.

Will it have any lasting effect? If comments made by players and coaches are any indication, it possibly will.

Young bigs struggling on the glass

The Warriors determined this was the year they’d go away from a veteran center rotation and turn things over to the three youngsters: Jordan Bell, Damian Jones and Kevon Looney. Results have been mixed.

One element that has been fairly consistently disappointing is rebounding. Bell played just 13 minutes over the last two games and grabbed three. Looney played 45 minutes and grabbed seven. He has been the best rebounder of the group.

Jones has started every game. In 32 minutes over last two games, he had six rebounds. His season high is six. He has had eight games with three or fewer boards.

The Warriors need them to be better.