There were Wildcats everywhere in the NBA Championship series. The Golden State Warriors Wildcats under head coach Steve Kerr ended up winning in five games 4-1.
The NBA Championship series wrapped up last night with some Wildcats losing and some Wildcats winning. Steve Kerr and Bruce Fraser on the bench coaching and Andre Iguodala on the court came out on top with their Warriors 129-120.
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The postgame on the radio centered around the one loss the Warriors suffered in the series to the Cavs. The premise is, that if they hadn’t of lost, they would have found themselves not having to explain it for the rest of their careers. Do you agree?
Kerr just won his 7th Championship ring. He is the 4th coach in NBA history to win multiple NBA titles within first three seasons of coaching other than Phil Jackson, Bill Russell, John Kundla, according to ESPN Stats and Info. ESPN also pointed out that Kerr is one of four coaches who has won multiple championships as a player and as a coach, others include Bill Russell, Tom Heinsohn, and K.C. Jones.
But this was not only a momentous achievement for Kerr as far as rings go, yesterday was also the anniversary of a previous NBA Championship won with his final shot while playing with Michael Jordan for Phil Jackson on the Chicago Bulls.
Iguodala just won his second NBA Championship ring. Although he didn’t win the series MVP like in 2015, that went to Kevin Durrant, the NBA’s target for a ring this season, he did achieve something rather amazing. Iggy was the most positive teammate in more ways than you can count, but specifically, he was +20 in the +/- stat column in game five and +60 overall in postseason play.
Iggy made a seal-the-deal type of dunk, but he made it in only the second quarter. He had been waiting to have his moment, he was patient, and the door finally opened for him.
"Well, I’ve been seeing that the whole series, like, okay, it’s there. Okay. I see it. It’s there. Deron Williams is pressuring me, sending me left, okay, the drive is there, the drive is there. But I just haven’t taken it. And they have been playing me for the pass, but I’m like we’re up 3-0, don’t try to force it. Just be patient, be patient. When it’s the time to do it, you’ll know.…And they’re playing me to pass, and it was like exploit them tonight."
If you want to understand why Kerr is such a great coach and this team has bought into his philosophy, it’s because he treats everyone on the team the same. He plays everyone, even when a game is tight, his philosophy is one that resonates with me as this is exactly how I used to coach teens. It worked as far as team chemistry for my teams, and it seems these simple concepts work with grown men as well. Take a listen:
Kerr’s coaching methodology is exemplified by this conversation he had with Iggy during the morning practice (Via Cleveland.com):
"Steve and I had an interesting conversation this morning in shootaround, and he said, How many minutes you got? I said, Whatever you need. I’ll be ready.…Steve is just, he’s got a great brain. It’s always working. He’s trying to figure everything out like, okay, I know what I got, I know how to get the best out of each one of these guys. But we’re going to take it to the next level."
Iguodala is about to go into contract negotiations with Warriors GM Bob Myers (Via Cleveland.com):
"I can’t believe I’m giving him a compliment considering we’re about to go heads up in negotiating, but he’s done an awesome job of finding the right personalities to fit the culture and balancing it out."
The Cavs Wildcats, Richard Jefferson, Channing Frye and Derrick Williams flew home defeated, with a ton of questions about next season’s team.
RJ has another two years left on his contract, but he is slowly transitioning to be a sports broadcaster. He’s been doing a lot of practice runs on TV and with his podcast Road Trippin’, as well as continuing his ownership of a yoga studio in Hermosa Beach. As for Channing, now 34 years old, he has one more year to go with the Cavs, and Derrick Williams is a free agent, but a bargain for the price.
LeBron, well rumors are flying around that he may want to play for the Lakers or Clippers in Los Angeles since he and his family live there.
We all know Steve Kerr is not silent when it comes to politics, but it is his team who unanimously voted unanimously not to accept a White House visit with President Trump. Unfortunately, this move may prove to go down in history more than winning the Championship.
How many former Arizona Wildcats will play in the NBA Championship next season? We will see, but in the meantime, let’s just enjoy celebrating A Players Program’s success in the NBA, shall we?