Western Notes: Wiggins, Nurkic, Daniels, Davis

Warriors coach Steve Kerr sought input from Tom Thibodeau after the team acquired Andrew Wiggins back in February, Marc Berman details in a story for the New York Post.

Thibodeau, who coached Wiggins in Minnesota from 2016-19, gave Kerr advice on how to maximize Wiggins’ game and playstyle. Golden State traded for Wiggins in a deal that shipped away D’Angelo Russell, acquiring a wing they hope can succeed alongside Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.

“We had just traded for Andrew Wiggins and he was really helpful,’’ Kerr said. “I had a long conversation with [Thibodeau] about Andrew. He gave me some good advice on ways to connect with Andrew, how much he enjoyed coaching him and why. We’ve gotten to know each other over the years. [Thibodeau has] been very helpful to us.”

The Timberwolves fired Thibodeau in January of 2019 after he reportedly failed to connect with a number of his players. Wiggins didn’t appear to be one of these players, however, as Kerr explained. It’s a vital reason why Kerr was elated to hear Thibodeau’s advice, along with how he’s a proven, veteran NBA coach.

“He showed some X’s and O’s and went over some actions they ran for [Wiggins],” Kerr said. “Some of the things they were trying to do. The thing with Tom is he’s a workaholic, loves the X’s and O’s, loves breaking down film and takes great joy in it. Our staff values his opinion.’’

“What is apparent is he and Andrew had a great relationship and Andrew said that as well. I know Andrew told me he really enjoyed playing for him and appreciated his commitment. When a coach knows his stuff and gets along with his players, he’s got a great chance to succeed. I think Tom’s got a great shot.’

Here are some other notes from the Western Conference:

  • The Blazers are rallying around Jusuf Nurkic as his grandmother battles COVID-19, Jason Quick of The Athletic writes. Nurkic learned the news last week and immediately urged his grandmother to visit a hospital. “I think people don’t realize that s— is real out there, man,” Nurkic said. “We’ve been fortunate to be here and in a safe environment, being tested every day, but please … take care of yourself. Wear your damn mask … if you are outside, by yourself, do what you got to do. But if you are inside … protect people.”
  • Nuggets guard Troy Daniels discussed his time with the Lakers, his path to Denver and more in an interview with Mike Singer of the Denver Post. Daniels was waived by the Lakers on March 1 and signed with the Nuggets four days later. “Early in my years, my agent used to tell me, he said it’s always good to be wanted,” Daniels said. “It’s good to feel wanted, and I want to be where I’m wanted.”
  • The Lakers could benefit from keeping Anthony Davis active by ensuring that he gets plenty of shots, Anthony Slater of The Athletic writes. Davis scored just 14 points in the team’s loss against Toronto on Saturday, shooting just 2-of-7 from the field. However, he believes he made the right decisions based on how the Raptors were guarding him. “We didn’t shoot the ball extremely well tonight at all from the field or from 3, which kind of let them continue with their game plan of doubling me,” Davis said. “I think if we had made a couple of shots, then they would’ve definitely changed a little bit.” 
newest oldest

15 thoughts on “Western Notes: Wiggins, Nurkic, Daniels, Davis

  1. El Don

    Out there so many people blames poor Wiggs for Thibs demise from MIN… I think you can’t look any further than Butler to see the why, how, when & where it went all wrong for MIN.

      • El Don, Wiggins is a nice guy, he’s a good kid. He’ll go out there use his unpracticed and unrehearsed athleticism and go out and get you 25. But when it’s the fourth quarter and the game on the line he can’t get you 2. Normally this is okay. A DeMar DeRozan type high-volume scorer who doesn’t close out games with effectiveness.

        Back in the day this was Tom Chambers, or to a lesser extent, Dominique Wilkins. Unable to put his team on his back and get it done. The last Vision you have of these guys is them sprawling on the floor and nine other guys running the other way after a turnover.

        The thing with Wiggins is he is so athletic and gifted in a natural way. Two dribbles and he dunks it, one step and the ball is gone he’s going the other way with a steal, or the defender is on him like a glove yet at the last second finds an impossible angle and Scoops it in with ease. Stuff like that.

        The problem is we expect Michael Beasley to do it every time. To “want it” every time. And that’s wrong, it’s not their personality. And guys who are closers like Jimmy Butler, who are Michael Jordan mentality types, get frustrated.

        • harden-westbrook-mvps

          Clearly anyone in their right mind would. I just said that after the OP was blaming Butler for the Wolves problems instead of Wiggins. I have nothing against Wiggs, but he’s hardly going to help the Old Big 3 in Golden State in bringing them back to their championship ways. Even if the add a decent player with the TPE and draft another good one with their top 5 pick.

          • Old big 3??? Coming from a Houston fan that is funny because their team is even older. Only reason Houston ha sa shot is the warriors are out of it. This is Houston’s last chance at a championship. They are the old team and if they don’t make it this year its all down hill from here. You do know that Harden and Curry is about the same age as Harden and Westbrook? Difference is warriors have Wiggins 25 and another top draft pick about 21 coming in.

          • Yeah Butler’s definitely a winner. He’s hard-nosed Jordan type mentality an effective closer with great defense. But I think Wiggins can be channeled by the people in San Francisco. I think he can become more than he was shown so far with this environment and this team. Kerr will find a way and the players will find a way to help him be more successful than ever.

            • Wiggins is not the first option like with the T-wolves. He can just play and not worried about being expected to carry the team. Some players are not leaders so GS is the perfect fit for him.

  2. KnickerbockerAl

    Butler didn’t get along with Wiggins. And he felt his leadership was too passive and affecting team. Surprised to hear Thibs speak well of Wiggins. Always felt they didn’t get along. Owner got rid of Butler not Wiggins. Real superstars are made. Just cause you are a lottery pick, top 5. Don’t mean you got Mamba mentality. Looked at Bron and Kobe. They came in stars. And then wanted to be better than MJ. That’s what you want in your team leader. Sports is about always getting better. Cause you grow physically, mentally, and emotionally. Wiggins for #1 pick. Has always been soft to me.

  3. And here we read two months early of the demise of the Lakers this season. We all said this in the offseason when they were picking up players to fill out the roster. No shooting.

    Danny Green plays like he’s 40 you can’t count on him to make eight threes a game, he’ll get you two or three and maybe Pope will get you a couple and kuzma a couple. But this fact will do the Lakers in. JJ Reddick needs to go to the Lakers LOL

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      The losses of Bradley and Rondo were bigger than most people thought.

  4. harden-westbrook-mvps

    Portland is overworking Dame and McCollum in the first two games, they won’t last long at this rate. Lillard played 45 minutes against Memphis and 44 minutes against Boston. CJ played 46 minutes against Memphis and 41 minutes against Boston. It will be interesting to see of both of them are forced to play 40+ minutes for their 3rd straight game against Houston on Tuesday.

  5. jessaumodesto

    Top 5 Warrior Jersey Colors of All Time:

    1. Blue
    2. White
    2. (Tie) Yellow
    4. Orange
    4. (Tie) Black

Leave a Reply