Saturday, February 24 2024
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Steve Kerr has stuck with Klay Thompson and Andrew Wiggins as both have gotten off to rough starts this season. Wiggins, especially, has been an eyesore and an anchor around the ankle of the starting lineup — which, in years past, has been an elite unit. 

So it’s strange that after riding Wiggins through perhaps his worst stretch as a Warrior, Steve Kerr is now regretting subbing in Wiggins, who was finally having a superb game, for Moses Moody over the final 4:26 of Golden State’s brutal loss to the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday. 

“I didn’t have my best game as a coach,” Kerr said on 95.7 The Game on Wednesday morning. “I should’ve left Moses in the game. Moses hits three 3s and he’s rolling, and we kind of overthought it. We wanted to get our best defensive group on the floor. But Moses was really good defensively, and watching the tape over again, that was really a terrible decision. I should’ve left [Moody] out there for at least a few more minutes. I regret that one.”

Again, Moody was replaced by Wiggins, who finished with 29 points and 10 rebounds. It was Wiggins’ best showing this season by a mile. But to Kerr’s point, Moody was cooking. All three of his 3s had come in the fourth quarter, plus an eye-opening baseline drive and slam. He finished 4 of 4 in his fourth-quarter minutes while the rest of the Warriors went 2-for-17. 

Kerr also could’ve left Moody in the game instead of Thompson, but either way, he was going to have to risk hurting the pride of one of his core veterans, and he chose not to do it. But it’s clear this is starting to weigh on him. 

The Warriors have lost eight of their last 10 games. It would be unfair to pin all these struggles on Wiggins and Thompson, but the reality is their current play has not warranted guaranteed closing minutes. It’s only happening because of their pasts. How long can Kerr sit back as the once unsinkable ship continues to go further under?

Moody, or Brandin Podziemski, of Jonathan Kuminga when he has it going, isn’t going to fix everything. These younger guys who are proving more and more ready to contribute may not fix anything. But it’s the principle of the matter. At some point, even the stalwart veterans have to earn their keep when guys like Moody are clearly ready for a bigger role. 

So we’ll see how long Kerr gives Wiggins and Thompson to find consistent footing. They’re going to have good games here and there, but if they don’t perform consistently, Kerr is going to have to make a change. It’s clear he’s already thinking about how tough that’s going to be, and laying the groundwork for actually doing it by speaking about it, if only between the lines, publicly. 



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