For the better part of a decade, the NBA has been painted in the colors of the Golden State Warriors. Spearheading a complete overhaul of the game, the Warriors introduced the basketball world to an unprecedented three-point centric style.
This transformation owes much to the trio of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green. The synergy of their skills, under the aegis of Steve Kerr, elevated the Warriors to one of the NBA's most dominant dynasties, bagging four NBA championships in nine seasons.
Steve Kerr, as the mastermind behind this dynasty, magnified the latent talents of his star players. However, the narrative took an unexpected twist when the Warriors faced a crushing defeat against the Lakers in the 2023 playoffs semifinals.
Adding salt to the wound, Kerr, still feeling the aftermath of the loss, banned LeBron's iconic "freeze" celebration during Team USA's summer training camp. The Western Conference semifinals witnessed the Lakers outmaneuvering the Warriors in a 6-game series.
This was primarily due to the Lakers maximizing their size advantage, with LeBron James and Anthony Davis leading from the front. Yet, amidst these giants, Austin Reaves made a significant mark. With an impressive season average of 13 points, 3 rebounds, and 3.4 assists, Reaves was no longer in the shadows.
Steve Kerr's Legacy Challenged
Following his standout performance, Reaves was called up for Team USA duty at the FIBA World Cup. However, his initiation came with a warning from Kerr to keep the "Freeze" celebration at bay.
Speaking on the matter, Reaves stated, "We had a chat about the 'Freeze' celebration, which Dennis [Schroder] introduced. Steve was clear, saying, 'I've seen it too often during the playoffs, and I'm done with it'" Reflecting on Steve Kerr’s illustrious career, his NBA journey has been nothing short of spectacular.
As a player, he shared the court with legends like Michael Jordan and Tim Duncan, securing five championship rings. Yet, it's his coaching role with the Warriors that truly cements his legacy. With a game-changing approach and the ability to nurture talent, Kerr transformed the Warriors into an NBA juggernaut.
However, the recent FIBA World Cup performance has sparked debates over Kerr's coaching prowess. Critics are in a frenzy, questioning his legacy. What are your thoughts on Steve Kerr's position in NBA history? Share in the comments below!