Steve Kerr unhappy with Anthony Davis switch to Lakers: 'It’s bad for the league'

By Sports Desk July 24, 2019

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr is concerned with how the Los Angeles Lakers handled their recruitment of Anthony Davis.

The saga was well noted, with Davis publicly wanting a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans and Los Angeles blatantly going after Davis near the trade deadline in February before negotiations with the Pelicans fell through.

For Kerr, that left a bad taste in his mouth, even though other players have negotiated their way to different teams. Kerr said Davis' situation is different because he had a couple of years left on his contract with New Orleans.

"I’m talking more about the Anthony Davis situation," Kerr said on The Warriors Insider Podcast. "Where a guy is perfectly healthy and has a couple years left on his deal and says, 'I want to leave'. That’s a real problem that the league has to address and that the players have to be careful with.

"When you sign on that dotted line, you owe your effort and your play to that team, to that city, to the fans. And then (once the contract runs out) it’s completely your right to leave as a free agent. But if you sign the contract, then you should be bound to that contract.

"If you come to an agreement with the team that, hey, it’s probably best for us to part ways, that’s one thing. But the Davis stuff was really kind of groundbreaking — and hopefully not a trend, because it’s bad for the league."

Eventually Davis got his wish and joined Los Angeles this offseason, but only after he played on a part-time basis with New Orleans after the initial trade rumors.

"As a former player, I would always sort of lean toward player empowerment, guys who have earned their right to free agency," Kerr said. "If they want to make a move for their own careers, I’m all for it. They’ve earned that right.

"My only issue is when a player who is under contract decides not to honour the contract. That’s a problem. That’s something that can really affect the league."

Kerr cited LeBron James and Kevin Durant, both of whom moved on to different teams in 2018 and 2019, respectively, as the proper way to transition to another team in the league.

"There’s a way to move and a way to not move," Kerr said. "What LeBron did, played out his contract. What Kevin did both when he arrived at Golden State and when he left. You sign contracts, you play them out and you move on. That’s how it should be done.

"But it’s a little disturbing that there has been some action that happens before contracts are up, where teams are sort of held hostage and the league is sort of held hostage. I’m not a big fan of that. That’s damaging for everybody."

Related items

  • LeBron James criticises Morey's anti-China tweet: So many people could have been harmed LeBron James criticises Morey's anti-China tweet: So many people could have been harmed

    Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James criticised Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey for his "misinformed" tweet about the unrest between China and Hong Kong.

    Rockets GM Morey issued an apology for a now-deleted tweet, that read "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" amid the ongoing protests in the region.

    The tweet angered Chinese officials and caused backlash in the Asian country against the Rockets and the NBA, which has financial interests in China worth billions of dollars.

    James was asked about the situation on Monday and while he believes in free speech, the four-time MVP was not happy with Morey's comments.

    "I don't want to get into a ... feud with Daryl but I believe he wasn't educated about the situation at hand and he spoke," James told reporters. "So many people could have been harmed, not only financially, but physically, emotionally, spiritually.

    "Just be careful what we tweet ... even though, yes, we do have freedom of speech. But there can be a lot of negative that comes with that, too."

    Morey quickly issued a clarification on his tweet at the time, saying it reflected his opinion, not that of the Rockets or the NBA. The NBA issued an apology to China, which in turn drew widespread and bipartisan condemnation in the United States.

    "I think when we talk about the political side, I think it's a very delicate situation," James, who was speaking prior to the preseason matchup against the Golden State Warriors, added. "Very sensitive situation. For me personally, if any of you guys know me or always cover me, you guys know when I speak about something, I speak about something I'm very knowledgeable about. Something that hits home for me. Something I'm very passionate about.

    "I feel like with this particular situation, not only was I not informed enough about — I just felt like it was something not only myself or my team-mates or our organisation had enough information to even talk about it at that point in time. And we still feel the same way."

  • Silver over 'cowardly' Trump for Spurs coach Popovich Silver over 'cowardly' Trump for Spurs coach Popovich

    San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said he prefers Adam Silver's leadership to that of United States president Donald Trump.

    Popovich was responding to criticism from Trump, who blasted the Spurs coach and Golden State Warriors counterpart Steve Kerr last week for their responses to questions about the NBA-China controversy.

    Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey issued an apology for a now-deleted tweet, that read "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" amid the ongoing protests in the region.

    While Popovich and Kerr unwilling to discuss the matter, NBA president Silver drew praise for his response after saying the league was "apologetic" but added that "we are not apologising for Daryl exercising his freedom of expression".

    Popovich – who has been critical of Trump in the past – told reporters prior to the Spurs' 123-114 preseason loss to the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday: "[Silver] stood by our nation and its principles. That's pretty huge in these days.

    "Sometimes, it's kind of Orwellian. You think we're living in a place where, 'Is this really happening?' But that comparison was pretty stark when you put our president up against those leaders when he's with them or talking to him and how he reacts compared to the way Adam Silver reacted. I was proud of him. It was great."

    Asked about Trump's comments, Popovich added: "All I did was make a comparison between Adam Silver's show of principle and courage in a tough situation, as opposed to how our president reacts when in the company of authoritarian figures, whether it's Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Russia or Turkey, whatever it is.

    "It comes off as really feckless, impotent, cowardly by comparison."

  • Warriors star Curry is at his peak – Kerr Warriors star Curry is at his peak – Kerr

    Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said superstar Stephen Curry is ready to have a great season in the NBA.

    Following the departure of Kevin Durant in free agency and Klay Thompson's knee injury in the NBA Finals in June, all eyes are on Curry for the 2019-20 campaign.

    Kerr spoke with media after Golden State's practice on Sunday and was asked if Curry will be tasked to do more this season in the wake of Durant's departure and Thompson's injury.

    "Just the usual," Kerr said. "I'm not looking for anything different than what he's done for five years, but what he's done is pretty special: two MVPs and a perennial top-five player."

    Kerr went on to say Curry's had an "incredible camp" so far and thinks the two-time MVP is in position for a special season.

    "To me, he's at his peak physically, mentally," Kerr said. "He's seen every defense that people have thrown at him now during his career, and he's ready to have a great year.

    "He's in his prime age-wise, strength and conditioning-wise and defensively he's seen everything that's come his way... So he's kind of in his sweet spot right now, and he has been the last couple years. And hopefully that continues for the next few years."

    While Thompson is not expected to return to the team until at least February or March, Curry will not need to bear too much of a burden as the Warriors signed former Brooklyn Nets guard D'Angelo Russell to a four-year, $117million contract during free agency.

    "It's just the natural way of our offense and how we play," Curry said. "I'm going to have the ball in my hands a lot more. Just got to make the right plays, be confident, aggressive, assertive every possession." 

    "Steph's smart," Kerr added. "And he realises what we've lost in the last couple of years from a veteran leadership standpoint. So he understands he's got more responsibility in that regard now."

    The Warriors visit the Los Angeles Lakers for a preseason matchup on Monday, before Golden State open the regular season against the Los Angeles Clippers on October 24.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.