Steve Kerr was officially introduced as the head coach of the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday afternoon, courtesy of a crowded press conference that featured him, some high-ranking members of the organization and a faulty microphone that had trouble at the beginning of the festivities.
You can view the proceedings in their entirety at NBA.com, but for those of you who don't want to spend a half-hour listening to Kerr for yourself, we've got you covered.
One of the biggest topics of conversation centered around why the TNT analyst decided to jump on board with the Dubs, especially when the New York Knicks had come calling at the same time. And in addition to revealing that he'd turned down an initial meeting with the Warriors, Kerr gave quite a few reasons.
Phil Jackson played a central part in the decision, telling Kerr to go with his gut:
Steve Kerr said Phil Jackson told him to make a decision based on his gut and heart. Kerr chose the Warriors.— Diamond Leung (@diamond83) May 20, 2014
Kerr: I'm convinced Phil is going to make it work in New York. But when I sat down with the Warriors it just clicked.— RealGM (@RealGM) May 20, 2014
But the strength of the management also mattered quite a bit, according to the new head coach.
"The most important thing I’ve learned in sports is owner/GM/coach, that troika, that relationship between those three, is critical. The relationship between those three will determine how you get through the bumps," he said, as transcribed by NBC Sports' Kurt Helin.
Mark Jackson also came into play, but only because Kerr was curious as to why he was fired. And the responses from the team officials were quite positive:
Kerr said he asked a lot of questions about why Mark Jackson was fired ... He said it was refreshing that Bob and Joe admitted mistakes— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 20, 2014
Let's not forget that the former/current analyst is coming in with no coaching experience at any level, so job security was obviously going to be on his mind prior to signing with a team that had just fired a relatively successful head coach. That shouldn't exactly come as a surprise.
The strength of this team also came into play, as Kerr revealed that he'd rather deal with expectations than have no pressure but with a rebuilding process ahead of him. Despite that view, he wouldn't call Golden State a championship team:
Kerr was asked if this was a championship team: "This is a really good team."— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 20, 2014
He wasn't insulting them, though. Far from it, as he was just trying to avoid creating any tabloid fodder and unreachable expectations right off the bat. Let's wait until the offseason finishes before declaring any 2015 title favorites.
Kerr did reveal that he expects a strong showing throughout the foreseeable future:
Kerr: "We've got a chance to be really good for the next decade. Let's take a swing every year."— Rusty Simmons (@Rusty_SFChron) May 20, 2014
Steve Kerr: "This organization is on the rise. Where it is now compared to 3 years ago is remarkable."— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 20, 2014
And while he'd like for the team to add a stretch 4, he did revel in having the weapon named Stephen Curry at his disposal:
On top of that, Kerr went out of his way to compliment the Golden State fanbase.
Always a good move by a first-year coach, right? Helin, obviously in agreement, wrote, "As you would expect of a polished broadcaster, Kerr was smooth and said all the right things during his press conference."
That would be one of those "right things."
Of course, part of the focus was on Kerr's coaching experience, or lack thereof. He revealed that he does have some training, even if his resume is rather threadbare:
During his broadcasting years, Steve Kerr attended training camps of coaches Don Nelson, Gregg Popovich and Hubie brown.— Rusty Simmons (@Rusty_SFChron) May 20, 2014
And Bob Myers, the team's general manager, had kind things to say about his background, which always helps:
Bob Myers: "When you strip it all away, what matters most is winning. And (Kerr) is someone who has won at every level."— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 20, 2014
But no matter how adept Kerr proves, the team would like to have an experienced staff of assistant coaches surrounding him, a sentiment echoed by the new head coach himself. So far, he hasn't had any trouble finding potential candidates, though none have been hired at this stage of the proceedings:
Steve Kerr on assistants: "I want head coaching experience next to me."— Diamond Leung (@diamond83) May 20, 2014
Bob Myers said Steve Kerr's phone is already ringing with good assistant coach candidates. "Everybody is calling me," Kerr said.— Rusty Simmons (@Rusty_SFChron) May 20, 2014
For Dubs fans, though, most reassuring of all was Kerr's willingness to work hard at mastering his new job:
Kerr: "I've been preparing for this. I'm well aware I haven't done it and I have a lot to learn. I'm willing to put in the work ..."— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 20, 2014
All in all, Kerr said the right things and didn't provide any shocking revelations. Sure, it would be great to find out which two players he hasn't spoken to, but he'll likely remedy that as soon as they pick up the phone and return their missed calls.
Was Steve Kerr a good hire?
So far, so smooth for Kerr's tenure.
It's already a pretty drastic difference from the M-Jax era, in which pressers were sometimes rather testy. After all, the previous head coach occasionally showcased an abrasive and confident personality, which makes for some interesting conversations with the media.
Now we just have to wait until the 2014-15 season to see if that's where the differences end.