The Phoenix Suns are not good.
So bad is interim head coach Jay Triano’s squad, they needed a garbage-time (albeit beautiful) alley-oop to avoid a 50-point loss last week.
What an alley-oop by the Suns to avoid losing by 50 pic.twitter.com/LN2XMjv4y6
— CJ Fogler (@cjzero) February 8, 2018
And so, with a win all but in hand heading into his Golden State Warriors’ matchup with Phoenix on Monday night, head coach Steve Kerr decided to let his players coach themselves, a decision he’d informed them of ahead of time.
Cleveland: Overhauls entire roster at the trade deadline
Golden State: Steve Kerr has his players coach pic.twitter.com/86sjEJyynx
— Yahoo Sports NBA (@YahooSportsNBA) February 13, 2018
Coach Dray to KD 😂 pic.twitter.com/fgLUHdB9rj
— Jordan Ramirez (@JRAM_91) February 13, 2018
In addition to Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala, Stephen Curry and David West tried their hands at leading the huddle.
“It had to do with me trying to reach my team,” Kerr said after the game, according to the Mercury News. “I have not reached them for the last month. They’re tired of my voice. I’m tired of my voice.”
It apparently worked—the Warriors flattened the Suns 129-83 for their third straight win on the heels of a 1-3 stretch.
Kerr and Triano had a lengthy conversation following the game about the Warriors coach’s decision.
Looks like Steve Kerr may be explaining his decision to have players run the huddle tonight to Suns coach Jay Triano postgame pic.twitter.com/6GHdnm2cch
— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) February 13, 2018
Triano later said he “didn’t have a problem” with Kerr’s choice, but multiple Suns found the tactic disrespectful. Guard Troy Daniels even threw a jab in at Kerr.
“It’s disrespectful,” Daniels said. “I don’t think it’s hard to coach those guys, though. So I think anybody can do it.”
VIDEO: Troy Daniels on Warriors players calling plays: ‘It’s disrespectful’ pic.twitter.com/McUg220JDH
— azcentral (@azcentral) February 13, 2018
Jared Dudley to ESPN on Steve Kerr allowing his players to coach. “It shows a lack of respect for an opponent, and maybe right now, we don’t deserve respect. When you keep getting beat by 40, teams won’t respect you. But it’s up to us to change that.”
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) February 13, 2018
Rising star Devin Booker, however, applauded Kerr’s decision to let his players coach themselves.
“You can look at it two ways: You can say anybody can coach that team, or you can say it’s a [good method],” Booker told ESPN’s Chris Haynes. “I liked the move personally. If I was a coach, I’d do that throughout the year, so I wouldn’t even look at it as disrespectful.
“I’m sure people are going to say it’s disrespectful, but I think Steve is an easygoing guy who has that relationship with his guys. But if he didn’t have four All-Stars, I don’t think he’d be doing that.”