An NBA general manager typically doesn’t need to confirm in the hours following a championship that his head coach will return for the following season, but in Steve Kerr‘s case, it wasn’t necessarily a sure thing — for health, rather than performance, reasons. However, despite Kerr’s back issues, Warriors general manager Bob Myers is confident that his head coach will be back on the bench for the 2017/18 season, as he tells Chris Haynes of ESPN.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that he will return as the coach of this team,” Myers said after Game 5. “I’m confident we’ll have him back. Steve will be our coach.”
Kerr expressed a similar sentiment in a recent interview with Tim Kawakami of The San Jose Mercury News, suggesting that even if he wasn’t able to make it back to coach the Warriors in this year’s Finals, he’d be ready for opening night in the fall. Ultimately, Kerr returned to the sidelines in time to lead the Warriors to their second title in three years.
Here are a few more Finals-related odds and ends worth passing along:
- Although it only took five games for the Warriors to dispatch of the Cavaliers, Cleveland head coach Tyronn Lue doesn’t believe there’s a “big gap” between the two teams, as Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com details.
- Within McMenamin’s piece, LeBron James acknowledged that the Warriors will “be around for a while,” but said he doesn’t think the Cavaliers are going anywhere either. “I know our front office is going to continue to try to put our franchise in a position where we can compete for a championship year in and year out,” James said. “Like I said, teams and franchises are going to be trying to figure out ways that they can put personnel together, the right group of guys together to be able to hopefully compete against [the Warriors].”
- The Warriors are already massive favorites to win the 2018 NBA Finals, according to professional oddsmakers. “They’re going to be the highest favorite we’ve ever had going into a season, any team in any sport,” Jeff Sherman of the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook tells David Purdum of ESPN.com.
- The Cavaliers need to find a way to get younger and more athletic, according to Sam Amico of AmicoHoops.net, who writes that the club’s bench is “a mess.”
- After 14 NBA seasons, Matt Barnes finally has a championship under his belt, but he doesn’t plan to ride off into the sunset. According to Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee (Twitter link), Barnes said that he has no plans to retire and hopes to return to the Warriors.
- Two years ago, David West left $11MM on the table by turning down his option with the Pacers to chase a ring. Dakota Crawford of The Indianapolis Star takes a look at the culmination of West’s hunt for a championship.