San Francisco – Warriors head coach Steve Kerr talks about the trade involving Gary Payton II and James Wiseman.
ON THE STATUS OF GARY PAYTON II:
“Well, one of the keys for us with the deal was that Gary was an easy fit. We just watched him help us win a championship. He knows our guys. He plays extremely well with Steph (Stephen Curry) and Draymond (Green). He’s a unique fit, but he fit perfectly with us. Sometimes it’s tough at the deadline. You get a guy that doesn’t know your personnel or vice versa, terminology and all of that, so there’s none of that. And obviously, Gary fills a position of need for us just with our on-ball defense and what he did for us in the playoffs last year. It’s exciting to have him and obviously we are hoping for the best on the health front.”
ON TRADING JAMES WISEMAN:
“I think, first of all, everybody here loved James, and I know that’s been a common theme and our affection for him because of what a hard worker he is and what a great young man he is. Just how much he wants it and how committed he is and just what he’s been through with the injuries, but I think between the injuries and the inexperience, coming to a team like ours, that’s fighting for championships and playing with a group that has been playing together for a long time, it was just difficult for me to give James the runway that he needed. He was, like I said, great every single day. Came to work with a great attitude and a positive spirit. He’s everything that you look for in a young player, in terms of his approach and his talent, but the timing was difficult just given what he needed and where we are as a franchise. I think this will be good for him to hopefully get a chance to play and make the mistakes that he needs to make and have a runway and grow and develop into the player he can become because he’s got a lot of ability and we know he’ll work for it.”
ON THE DECISION TO TRADE JAMES WISEMAN:
“Well, I think, it was hard on a personal level because of our affection for James and the talent level. I was all in on taking James when we did. I was part of the group and loved the ability and loved everything that we saw. I think you can’t always foresee circumstances. As you remember at the time, we had the worst record in the league and Klay (Thompson) had just torn his Achilles. We didn’t really know where we were as a team. Frankly, we didn’t know we would a championship a year and a half later. I think the important thing, and I was a GM once, not a very good one, but I’ve been in Bob’s (Bob Myers President of Basketball Operations/GM) shoes. The important thing in this league, and I think in all sports, you have to move forward. You can’t look back. You have to move forward and make whatever moves are necessary to allow you to succeed in the present and going forward. That was the determination that the organization made.”
Warriors General Manage speaks with the media today and addresses the concerns of the Gary Payton II trade with the Portland Trailblazers.
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