Warriors

Warriors

No player in the NBA attempted more 3-pointers over the first four seasons of Steve Kerr's tenure as Warriors coach than Steph Curry.

Yet, even Kerr initially sometimes was skeptical of Curry's shot selection.

"He changed my understanding of what was a good shot and what was not," Kerr explained Friday on 95.7 The Game's "Damon, Ratto & Kolsky."  " ... The first couple months that I coached Steph, half the shots that he took, I could hear my old coaches' voices ringing in my head saying, 'That's a bad shot. That's a bad shot.' "

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Curry was well on his way to winning his first MVP award during the 2014-15 season when Kerr said he finally learned to stop worrying and love the bombing from beyond the 3-point line.

By the time the Warriors played the Los Angeles Clippers on March 8, 2015, Curry already was averaging a then-career-high 8.1 3-point attempts per game. Golden State had a Western Conference-leading 48-12 record entering the game, attempting the third-most 3-pointers per game (27.3) in the NBA and making the second-most (10.7).

Yet, Kerr's old instincts remained, and he said he would throw his hands on his head in frustration with some of Curry's shots. That ended five years ago this March, when Curry did this.

 

"That was probably the last time I ever put my hands on my head when Steph took one of those shots," Kerr recalled. "That was probably [a few] months into my first season coaching, and it just took that long to realize, 'OK, these are actually good shots.' Because they were never good shots for anybody else who had ever played the game."

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The kinds of shots that used to make Kerr throw his arms up are now much more common, and ESPN's Kirk Goldsberry wrote earlier this year that 3-point shooters were notably more efficient this season than they were in the NBA's last season before Kerr joined the Warriors, with shooters league-wide nailing 3-pointers from 28 to 30 feet at a 31.3 percent clip.

Kerr agreed with the hosts that shots like Curry's against the Clippers over five years ago normalized such long-range efforts, from the NBA down.

"Steph has changed the game for everybody, at every level," he said.